Angels on Memorials

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Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   Text © Copyright July 2023, Humphrey Bolton; licensed for re-use under a Creative Commons Licence.
Images also under a similar Creative Commons Licence.


This is a collection of angels, which are mainly sculptures on memorials. It was inspired by the angel on the Brighouse war memorial in Rydings Park, near to my home.
SE1423 : The angel on the war memorial, Rydings Park, Brighouse by Humphrey Bolton
I thought that she is holding a feather, but now realise that it is more likely a palm leaf, another symbol of victory.
by Humphrey Bolton


Like most angels on war memorials she is stern and aloof. She is standing on a ball, which seems to be a popular motif. She holds aloft a victory wreath and also holds what is probably a palm leaf.

War memorials

There are several types of war memorials including abstract columns or slabs, crosses, soldiers and angels. The ones in this article are angels, which can be classified as Angels of Victory and Angels of Peace, some of which are caring for an injured soldier.

War memorials, Angel of Victory

TQ0058 : Victory Angel by Colin Smith
Figure on top of Woking's War Memorial in the Town Square.
LinkExternal link
by Colin Smith


TQ3389 : Tottenham War Memorial by Jim Osley
"War Memorial. 1923. Bronze statue of angel representing Peace by L.F. Roslyn RBS, standing on a shaft and base of grey Cornish granite (from the Kit Hill quarry, Callington) by W. Griffiths and Sons Ltd, masons. " - Grade II listed - LinkExternal link.
by Jim Osley


TQ3182 : Finsbury War Memorial by Stephen Craven
This war memorial in a small park adjacent to Rosebery Avenue is listed grade 2 (list entry number 1389293). It was built in 1921, and designed by Thomas Rudge. It comprises a bronze Angel of Victory holding a wreath in outstretched hand, standing on the upper part of a globe. The plinth bears four bronze plaques depicting the Finsbury Rifles in various battles.
by Stephen Craven


NZ2464 : War Memorial (The Response) by David Dixon
This memorial ('The Response'), in the grounds of St Thomas’ Church, was commissioned by Sir George Renwick, a local ship owner and MP for Morpeth, to commemorate the raising of the Territorial Battalions of the Northumberland Fusiliers by the Chamber of Commerce, the safe return of his five sons from the war. The 'Commercials', as they became known, were among the 'Pals' battalions raised early in the war. The memorial was unveiled on 5 July 1923 by the Prince of Wales.

The memorial comprises a granite screen wall on a rusticated plinth with a raised curved centrepiece. The plinth projects to support an impressive bronze sculptural group by Sir William Goscombe John RA. The bronze group comprises dozens of highly detailed figures, those in front marching in step with two drummer boys and those behind tarrying to bid farewell to wives, children and friends. This remembers the massing of the 5th Northumberland Fusiliers in April 1915, and their march from their camp at Gosforth, down the Great North Road and through Newcastle to its Central Station. The battalion’s route was lined with well-wishers, parents, wives and children; some cheering, some weeping. A trumpeting angel soars above the advancing group, breaking the skyline of the screen wall. A front slab carries the bas relief inscription:
NON SIBI SED PATRIE (not for self but for country)
THE RESPONSE 1914

The memorial is Grade I-listed (List Entry Number: 1186201 LinkExternal link Historic England).
by David Dixon


SK2422 : War Memorial (1), Lichfield Street, Burton upon Trent, Staffs by P L Chadwick
Standing in its own gardens, this is an impressive memorial relating to the fallen of the First and Second World Wars. It is surmounted by an angel with laurel leaf as an allegory of victory. Originally unveiled on the 2nd August 1922. It was re-dedicated on the 29th October 2000 after restoration funded by public donations. The sculptor was H.C. Fehr who was also responsible for many other war memorials elsewhere. There is further information on the Imperial War Museums War Memorials website. Some information © IWM (WMR-1948).

SK2422 : War Memorial (2), Lichfield Street, Burton upon Trent, Staffs.
SK2422 : War Memorial (3), Lichfield Street, Burton upon Trent, Staffs.
by P L Chadwick


SE4048 : War Memorial, Wetherby by Humphrey Bolton
This is of the 'Angel of Victory' type, with laurel wreath and a sword held down by her side. The little lions at the base look rather comical. It is of bronze, by E. F. Roslyn, c.1920.
by Humphrey Bolton


SJ9499 : Soldier and Victory, Ashton-Under-Lyne War Memorial by David Dixon
The crowning group at the top of the memorial comprises the winged figure of Victory bending over a collapsed and wounded soldier in battlefield dress, her arm around his right shoulder. The soldier, wounded and exhausted, holds a spray of laurels in his bandaged left hand. The winged figure of peace supports him. Having received the laurels of everlasting gratitude, the soldier hands over his sword, the symbol of justice, which the winged figure takes into her keeping. Victory stands upon a jumbled assemblage of weaponry, equipment and machinery components symbolising the three armed forces, including an aircraft propeller, ropes, sails and an anchor, a tank gear-wheel, artillery guns, rifles and steel helmets. This crowning group is made of bronze and weighs two tons.
by David Dixon
Shared Description



SX9192 : Victory, War memorial, Northernhay Gardens, Exeter by Derek Harper
By John Angel in 1923, the figure of Victory stands on a dragon, holding laurel leaves aloft. She is on top of a plinth above four seated war figures (see SX9192 : VAD Nurse, War Memorial and SX9192 : Exeter war memorial). The memorial also appears in SX9293 : Northernhay Gardens, Exeter.
by Derek Harper


NZ2464 : Figure of Victory by Gerald England

On the top of the South African War Memorial NZ2464 : South African War Memorial. It was removed before the Metro tunnels were driven through and reinstated three years later with an entirely new cast bronze body and fibreglass wings. Before restoration it was locally referred to as "The Mucky Angel".
by Gerald England




War memorials, Angel of Peace and caring angel

SJ9698 : Angel with Sailor, Stalybridge War Memorial by David Dixon
The bronze angel tending to a dying sailor at the eastern side of Victoria Bridge.

1914 1918
JUTLANT
ZEEBRUGGE
THE FALKLAND ISLES

REMEMBER THE LOVE OF THEM WHO
CAME NOT HOME FROM THE WAR
SEE YOU TO IT THAT THEY SHALL
NOT HAVE DIED IN VAIN

The imposing war memorial, which stands at one end of Victoria Bridge over the River Tame, occupies either side of the northern entrance to Trinity Street was unveiled on 6 November 1921 and is Grade II* listed.

The memorial was designed by local sculptor FV Blundstone. Its walls are segmental in plan flanking each side of Trinity Street. At each end of the bridge, there are squared piers with swept abutments, crests of arms and moulded bases carry winged angelic figures supporting dying battle clad figures; to the west a soldier and the east a sailor. The walls carry granite plaques inscribed with rolls of honour carrying the names of the 628 men who gave their lives, their names being arranged in regiments. The walls end in carved stone lions on square piers.

LinkExternal link More images and detail of the Stalybridge War Memorial
by David Dixon


SO8554 : War memorial by Worcester Cathedral by Roger  D Kidd
Grade II* listed, sculpture by William Robert Colton (1867-1921), dating from 1908.

Wikipedia explains: The Worcester Boer War Memorial, located in the grounds of Worcester Cathedral, is a bronze depiction of a hatless figure who is protected by an angel. The memorial consists of a three-stepped base surmounted by a plinth, pedestal and figure of a soldier of the Worcester Regiment kneeling as he prepares to fire his last cartridge. A winged figure said to represent "Immortality" stands above him with a palm branch in one hand, and in the other hand a sheathed sword with laurel wreath on it. The memorial is dedicated to the men of Worcestershire killed in the South African War. It was unveiled on 23 September 1908 by Lt. Gen. the Hon. Sir N. G. Lyttleton. The monument was restored in 2005. LinkExternal link
by Roger D Kidd


NZ2464 : Newcastle War Memorial, "PEACE" by David Dixon
The Newcastle First World War Memorial in Old Eldon Square was unveiled by Earl Haig on 26th September 1923. It is in the form of a bronze statue of St George killing the Dragon. The statue is mounted on a tall white stone pedestal with a simple cornice and stepped base.

The left face of the pedestal carries the word PEACE; below it is a curved bronze relief depicting a mother and child and an angel.

LinkExternal link Public Monuments and Sculptures Association
by David Dixon
Shared Description


SU4519 : Angel of Mons, Eastleigh War Memorial by David Dixon
The original angel which stood on top of SU4519 : Eastleigh War Memorial was stolen and never recovered. Subsequently a replica sculpture of the Angel of Mons was commissioned by sculptor Jill Tweed and set in place.

LinkExternal link (Wikipedia) for more about the Angel of Mons.
by David Dixon


SE2933 : Angel of Peace, Leeds War Memorial by David Dixon
SE2933 : Leeds War Memorial, which originally stood in City Square, was designed by H C Fehr and was dedicated on 14th October 1922. It consisted of a bronze statue of a winged Victory holding a sword and a wreath which stood on a base of Portland stone.

The summit of the memorial now bears a draped angelic figure in bronze. The original statue sustained storm damage, and was finally replaced in 1992 by this gentler, more conciliatory, Angel of Peace releasing a dove, sculpted by Ian Judd.

LinkExternal link
by David Dixon


SO8376 : War memorial Angel of Peace by Philip Halling
Kidderminster war memorial was unveiled on 22 October 1922. The figure is of a winged Angel of Peace alighting on the world holding an olive branch aloft in her right hand, with a child, representing the 'Child of the Future', in her left arm and a broken sword in her left hand. The sculpture is the work of Alfred Drury. The memorial is Grade II listed, see: LinkExternal link
by Philip Halling


ST2937 : An angel appears by Neil Owen
The war memorial in Bridgwater's King Square is known as Angel of Bridgwater. As it happens it was sculpted by John Angel in the mid-1920s. However, it should more formally be called 'Civilisation' - holding a globe aloft and with a book of knowledge on her lap. Beneath her feet and those of the children are the 'demons of war'.

The monument was cast in 1924 and officially unveiled by Michael Lambart, 12th Earl Lord Cavan; it stands on a large plinth in the square and is on the site of the former Bridgwater Castle.

See ST2937 : An angel's back for a view of the rear.
by Neil Owen


SE8911 : The Crosby Angel by Jonathan Thacker
The Crosby Angel is the memorial to former pupils of Crosby School who died in the First and Second World Wars. The angel was recently repaired and re-dedicated by the Bishop of Grimsby, Rt. Revd. David Rossdale on 7th May 2010.
by Jonathan Thacker


SO7137 : Angel on Ledbury War Memorial by Bob Embleton
One of three mosaics on the war memorial. The other two being a sailor and a soldier. After WWII an airman was added on four tiles above the angel.
by Bob Embleton


ST7564 : Edward The Peacemaker, Parade Gardens by David Dixon
The King Edward VII Memorial consists of a tall plinth surmounted by a bronze angel of peace. It commemorates King Edward VII's diplomatic tactics in Europe, particularly with his cousin the Kaiser in Germany, and his establishment of an entente cordiale with France.

The memorial was moved to its current site in Parade Gardens, to the east of Bath Abbey, from Milsom Street in 1933 when the Bath Royal Literary Institution was demolished and the Gardens re-landscaped.

Many similar versions of this statue, known as "The Peacemaker", can be found in public parks and squares all over the country.
by David Dixon


TQ2904 : King Edward VII Peace Memorial by Ian Capper
Statue on the seafront at the old boundary between Brighton and Hove, funded by both towns, unveiled in 1912 in memory of King Edward VII. The bronze angel, depicting Peace, was by Newbury A Trent. Grade II listed - see LinkExternal link. For a wider view, see TQ2904 : King Edward VII Peace Memorial.
by Ian Capper


TQ2904 : King Edward VII Peace Memorial by Ian Capper
Statue on the seafront at the old boundary between Brighton and Hove, funded by both towns, unveiled in 1912 in memory of King Edward VII. The bronze angel, depicting Peace, was by Newbury A Trent. Grade II listed - see LinkExternal link. For a close up see TQ2904 : King Edward VII Peace Memorial.

In the left background is the first of a number of similar shelters along the promenade in Hove. This is also grade II listed - see LinkExternal link. For a closer photo see TQ2904 : Shelter.
by Ian Capper


I have included one wingless woman; maybe the budget wasn't enough for wings!
SE1929 : Statue on the Hunsworth war memorial, East Bierley by Humphrey Bolton
She is similar to the angel memorials, holding a victory laurel wreath and palm leaves, but without wings. She looks suitably sad. Grade II listed.
by Humphrey Bolton


KML

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