Culture Secretary Maria Miller has announced plans to list hundreds of war memorials across the UK after handing the highest statutory protection to Liverpool’s cenotaph
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Designed by Lionel Budden and completed in 1930, the Liverpool cenotaph was originally given a grade II listing by English Heritage in 1952. However the memorial has today been upgraded to grade I - one of just three war memorials in the country to be granted the top heritage status.
The other two grade I-listed war memorials are in Victoria Park in Leicester and the cenotaph in Whitehall, both designed by Edwin Lutyens.
Miller went on to reveal further plans to list up to 500 war memorials a year over the next five years, as part of a programme to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War in 1914.
There are currently 1,300 war memorials on England’s National Heritage list, but it is expected that there are many more in existence.
Miller said: ‘This centenary comes at a point where living memory becomes written history, so it is absolutely essential that our work to mark it speaks clearly to young people in particular. War Memorials are a precious part of our heritage that keeps alive the ultimate sacrifice that so many made. It is absolutely right that we cherish and protect them, and I welcome English Heritage’s initiative in launching this project today.’
She added: ‘Whether we have relatives whose names are on local memorials, or who fought alongside those who died, we all have a connection with remembrance. I would urge everyone to make sure their local memorial is in good condition. If it isn’t, then English Heritage, the War Memorials Trust and the Heritage Lottery Fund all have grants and advice available. English Heritage will be working with the War Memorials Trust and others to ensure that all war memorials are properly recognised and cared for, and encouraging volunteers to get more involved than ever before in the designation process.’
Roger Bowdler, designation director at English Heritage, added: ‘The Liverpool cenotaph is a remarkable monument, combining the highest quality of design and artistry with a dignified and painfully poignant memorial to the losses suffered by the people of Liverpool. It fully deserves this designation at the highest grade.
The Liverpool cenotaph is a remarkable monument
‘Researching, recording and recommending up to 2,500 more war memorials for listing over the next five years is a major task but one that English Heritage is proud to undertake. These memorials will gain a place on the National Heritage List for England to tell the story of this country’s sacrifice and struggle.’
Liverpool cenotaph given Grade I listing