The Memorials
Memorial Book title05
Winscombe Memorial (7) Memorial on remembrance day (2)

This is the War Memorial in the churchyard of St. James The Great, Winscombe; “The Beacon of Light” overlooking the village of Winscombe and the surrounding countryside. Originally raised by the Church to honour the men who died in the Great War it was dedicated on 2nd January 1921. Further names were added by the Parish Council in 1946 to honour the dead of the Second World War.

Click here for more information on the Memorial and pictures of the inscriptions.

In addition to this, there is also a Triptych in the porch of St James, commemorating the Great War, on which are inscribed the names both of the honoured dead and of those who served and returned home to the village and surrounding area. In Margaret Tucker’s “The Book of Winscombe” this was “Originally on display at the bottom of The Green”

St James’s Vestry book minutes records that item 7 of the meeting 29th March 1921 was:
“It was resolved unanimously that the War Shrine, at present near the station, be removed to the church porch until the proposed War Memorial Hall is prepared to receive it.”
While land near the Lynch was purchased by public subscription [Now the War Memorial Recreation Ground], no hall was ever built so the shrine, in the form of a triptych, is still in its temporary home over 85 years later.

Triptych on remembrance day Triptych (1)

There are 10 differences in the names of the Honoured between these two main memorials,
3 names appear on the Memorial Cross but not on the Triptych,
5 appear on the Triptych but not on the Memorial Cross
2 differences in the spelling of names [that on the Memorial Cross being the correct spelling that matches to the war records.]

The wood is reputed to have come from HMS Britannia, a wooden first-rate ‘battleship’ launched in 1860 but never fitted out for sea [having been made obsolete as a fighting ship by the invention of the ‘Ironclad’] and used as a training vessel at Dartmouth from 1869 until hulked in 1909. She was broken up in 1916

The War Memorial at Sandford, on the opposite corner to All Saint’s Church, in front of the car show room, has no names inscribed on it, the plaque having been mislaid during redevelopment work at the site. Mrs. Phyllis Cram gives a representation of the plaque in her book “From Parish Pump to Parish Present” and from this record it appears that the WW1 fallen of Sandford are commemorated on the Winscombe stone Memorial : There is one difference though, One man appears with the initial “A” on the Winscombe memorials BUT was apparently shown as an “R” on the Sandford memorial - This adds some mystery as to who exactly who A, or R, Dudden was.  We have been unable to find any references to any Sandford residents who died in WW2 being named on the memorial

war memorials (4)

There is also a Plaque in the Community Centre for the boys of the old Winscombe school: This introduces one further name with a Winscombe connection, not on any other Parish memorial [though he is named on Sandford’s]

Winscombe School [Community centre]

Other memorials also exist in the Parish, both to individuals and to groups :

The War Memorial Ground, just off the Lynch : This was funded by public subscription but doesn’t appear to record any names.

Several graves in the St James’ Churchyard, Plaques and a memorial window in the church.

A plaque honouring a former employee at the NatWest Plc Bank [formerly Westminster Bank] 4, Woodborough Rd.

Are there any others ?