The War Memorial at Great Easton was built, and officially unveiled, before the end of the First World War. The foundation stone was laid, with ceremony, on 20th March 1918 by Lord Lambourne (a deputy lieutenant of Essex who became Lord Lieutenant of Essex in 1919). The Essex Chronicle provided a full account of the event, a transcript of which can be read here.
As can be seen in the photographs of this event, it was attended by a large gathering. The completed Memorial was unveiled by Brigadier-General Colvin, the local M.P. (who had been County Commandant of the Essex Volunteers in 1914) on May 1st 1918. A transcript of the Chronicle’s report of the event can be read here.
An article by the Rev. Capel explains that the Memorial was not erected by the Church alone, but by the parishioners of Great Easton and Tilty, nearly all of whom had subscribed to it:
There are over a hundred names on the List of Subscribers, who raised the sum of £110 to pay for the memorial (this would be the equivalent of around £6,000 today). They included people from all ranks of local society, from the Countess of Warwick to “the poor people” that the Rev. Capel particularly thanked in his article. The School Children had also contributed, as had The Garth, which was a Children’s Home at this period.
Many of the people on the List of Subscribers had direct and personal connections with the men who died during the war, and would have been grieving the loss of a loved one. It is possible to establish links between some of these people and the names commemorated on the memorial, and these are indicated below. These are the connections that are reasonably straightforward to make, and there will be others that are not so obvious. However, showing how many people were directly linked with the men remembered on the Memorial helps to demonstrate the impact of the war on the communities of Great Easton, Duton Hill and Tilty.
Photographs of Great Easton Memorial from Alf Wright’s collection:
A copy of General Colvin’s speech:
NB The photographs and documents on this page have been provided by Alf Wright who generously shares his extensive collection of local material with the Group, and with local residents.
Last updated on 9th November 2020