WAR MEMORIALS in The Charltons
The Charltons have a significant number of war memorials. There are Rolls of Honour for WW1 in both churches (and the clock in Charlton Adam church); a collection of photographs of 17 of the WW1 casualties from both villages in the Reading Room; and of course there is the War Memorial itself (at the junction of Ilchester Road and Collins Lane) which was designed by Capt W F Dickinson of Kingweston and commemorates not only those who died in WW1 (some added in recent years following research) but also three who died in WW2 and one more recently (2006) in Iraq.
In January 2015 our War Memorial and Garden of Remembrance became Grade 2 Listed.
The English Heritage listing details are here.
The war memorial which is less obvious though is the Memorial Playing Field next to the Community Hall. The field was “given by the two villages in tribute to those who gave their lives in the last war” [Tidings, July 1952] and was dedicated on 14 June 1952 together with the Memorial Gates (those half way along the field, rather than the newer entrance to the Community Hall). Originally, two memorial tablets were installed but, being bronze, they have gone the way of all things of any value which can be moved! At that time the villages had an active branch of the British Legion who held their Annual Sports Day immediately after the dedication of the memorials.The WW1 Memorial Board in the Reading Room was created by the Charlton Mackrell Post of the Comrades of the Great War (a precursor to the British Legion)and has photographs of 17 of those who died.
The Charltons Historical Society has scanned copies of these photographs for the local archives and a set is also held by the Reading Room Trustees.
The original drawing of the War Memorial by Capt W F Dickinson has also been presented for permanent display in the Reading Room.
The War Memorial and garden was built by men of the villages, assisted by boys from the village school, and was dedicated in 1930.
The old photo below also shows in the background the GWR station (R), which was closed in 1962, and the lime kiln (L), which was demolished in 1968.
The Charltons Historical Society is continuing to research the veterans of the two wars, with the intention of commemorating them in print and online. We aim to tell the story of both the casualties and survivors of the wars, expanding on the bare lists of names from the various memorials. The Society assisted with research and made a donation to the Parish Council's
War Memorial Appeal in 2012 and the restoration of the stone work has now been
Ongoing research has collected varying amounts of information, particularly about the casualties, mainly from official records. We would still like more background information for all of them though, and have very little for those who served in WW2 - not even a full list of names.
Please contact us if you have any information or memories; if you have photographs, medals or other memorabilia, could we please copy or scan them? However small your “snippet” may be it will be very welcome; as there were over 100 Charltons men in WW1 alone, don’t assume we already know it - we probably don’t!
** We have more recently discovered that Percival Leonard Edmonds BROOKS is commemorated on the Tower Hill Memorial to merchant seamen who died in WW1. He was a fireman and trimmer on SS Royal Edward which was acting as a troop ship in the Aegean Sea when it was torpedoed on 13 August 1915. Three other sons of Frederick Chalker BROOKS served in the army and survived the war. We do not know whether there were any other merchant seamen from The Charltons who died in wartime .
Known surnames of casualties and survivors from the First World War are:
ACKERMAN, ANDREWS, ATYEO, BALE, BARNES, BARRINGTON, BLAKE, BRAIN, BROOKS, BURCH, CAMPBELL, CANNON, CAVE, CHANCELLOR, CROOM, CROSSMAN, DANCEY, DAWES, DUNN, DYER, EADES, FIRMINGER, GAIT?, GAYLARD, GIBBS, GRIMES, GROWERSON?, HALLETT, HANHAM, HILBORNE, HOBBS, HODGES, HOLLAND, HUGHES, INGS, JEANES, JENNER, KNIGHT, LISTER, LUCAS, MANNING, MAY, MERRITT, MILLARD, MOGG, MOODY, NICHOLAS, NORRIS, PARKER, PERRY, POCKETT, PULLINGER, REEVES, RICH, SANDERS, SEAGER, SEALEY/ SEELEY, SIMS, SMITH, SPACKMAN, SUGAR, SWEET, TRIM, WAITE, WAREHAM, WELSH/ WELCH, WHELLER, WIL(L)COX, WILLIAMS, WYATT