In the aftermath of the First World War, the people of Britain needed a focus for their grief, loss and pride. War memorials were erected across the UK in the greatest wave of remembrance this nation has ever seen.
They form an important part of our rich cultural heritage and connect us with the global conflict that shaped the world we live in today. They provide insight into the changing face of commemoration as well as artistic, social, local, military and international history.
However there is not one definitive list of UK War Memorials or indeed an authoritative definition of that which constitutes a memorial. Memorials range from the deeply personal to grand public focal points of remembrance.
UK War Memorials was therefore created with support from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport to provide a single place where everyone can find information from all the major national organisations involved in the recording, conservation and listing of war memorials as well as those who provide expertise, access to funding and ways to get involved.
UK War Memorials is the place to find the answers to your questions and discover how you can get involved in preserving this important national heritage.
Finding what you need
- Apply for a grant
- Attend a local workshop
- List a memorial
- Research and record a memorial
- Get resources
- Get conservation advice
Government has made over £2 million in grants available for the conservation and protection of war memorials during the First World War Centenary Grants are administered by War Memorials Trust. If you would like to apply for a grant for your local war memorial(s) details of how to apply can be found here or you can contact them directly to enquire about funding on firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 7233 7356.
Civic Voice is running workshops where you can find information about engaging with your local war memorials. You can find details of these workshops on their website and also sign up to the war memorials newsletter which gives regular updates on the programme.
You can protect your memorial by applying to have it Listed. The First World War Memorials Programme aims to List 2,500 war memorials during the centenary period. If you would like to apply for your local war memorial to be added to the National Heritage List for England, details of how to do so can be found here.
You can search WMR records for information relating to a war memorial on the IWM site, and this page contains contact details should you wish to add updates to memorial information. You can search for information relating to the current condition of a war memorial using War Memorials Online. You can also add your own memorial condition updates– which can then be used by War Memorials Trust to identify memorials in need of conservation. If you wish to apply for a grant your war memorial should be on War Memorials Online.
If you are a teacher you can access information about visiting a war memorial and doing a condition survey with school children. There is also a range of downloadable teaching resources available from War Memorials Trust.
If you are a professional working with memorials (e.g. stone mason) you can access specialist conservation information. Advice can also be found through War Memorials Trust conservation help sheets. In addition, specific guidance is available if your memorial is in Scotland or Wales.