Monument | War dead, War served | WW1

St Johns Hackney war memorial

Erection date: 8/8/1921

Inscription

Courage
Sacrifice

{Incised in the projecting stones towards the base of the monument:}
{North face:}
To the glory of God and to the honoured memory of the men of this borough who made the supreme sacrifice during the Great War, 1914 - 1918.
{West face:}
To the glory of God and to the honoured memory of the men of this borough who made the supreme sacrifice during the Great War, 1939 - 1945.
{South face:}
The houses in Wattisfield Road Millfields erected for the use of disabled sailors and soldiers are a further tribute of the borough to the memory of the fallen.

The Listing text gives: "The almshouses in Wattisford Road for Disabled Soldiers and Sailors, referred to in the inscription, was opened in 1923. Designed by Gunton & Gunton, they consist of a row of six cottages {at the southern end of the road} with a semi-detached house at each end." and:

"On 28 July 1922, The Builder magazine published pictures of the memorial. It reported that through the design 'the connection of Hackney with the mediaeval crusades (the Knights Templar were located at Temple Mills in 1270) is linked up with the recent campaign in Jerusalem, in which Hackney churches took part'."

Cawthra created almost identical memorials at: Gwersyllt, Wrexham in 1923 and Monifieth, Scotland.

Unveiled by Sergeant Harry Kenny and Sergeant Issy Smith, both honoured with VCs.

Site: St Johns Hackney war memorial (1 memorial)

E5, Lower Clapton Road, St John, Hackney

The nearby information board gives: "It is probable that a church and surrounding churchyard has stood here since before the Norman Conquest, however no records survive of any building before 1275.  The small grounds of the old church, originally St Augustine's and later St. John's, were extended on the eastern side in 1763, where the walled garden is now, and again in 1790, to the north, to allow construction of the new church.

In the 1790s Harry Sedgewick, a trustee of the church, oversaw the planting of nearly 200 elm and horse chestnut trees in avenues throughout the churchyard.  Railings enclosed each area of tombs with high railings along Lower Clapton Road frontage. In 1893 large areas of the churchyard were cleared of tombs and then later in WWII the railings were removed from the site perimeter and around groups of tombs.

The Northern Recreation Ground on the north side of the church was designed formally. Its central feature is now the War Memorial which commemorates the 13,000 local men who were killed in action, many in the 1/10th (County of London) Battalion Territorial Force (Hackney) which formed in 1914."

Another board informs: "The present parish church of Hackney was completed in 1797. ... Designed by ... James Spiller...".

This section lists the subjects commemorated on the memorial on this page:
St Johns Hackney war memorial

Subjects commemorated i

World War 1

We'd always assumed that this war was known as the Great War until WW2 came a...

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World War 2

Sorry, we've done no research on WW2, it's just too big a subject. But do vis...

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This section lists the subjects who helped to create/erect the memorial on this page:
St Johns Hackney war memorial

Created by i

Joseph Hermon Cawthra

Other work in London includes: the Mother and Child in Bishop's Park, Hammers...

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Issy Smith, VC

Born Ishroulch Shmeilowitz (other spellings are available), to parents residi...

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