Rothwell War Memorial
Article by: Dave Roberts - First Published: 15 April 2011
Rothwell War Memorial was dedicated on (Armistice Day) 11 November 1923. A large crowd gathered at the public unveiling ceremony which included a parade of soldiers who were then stood to attention and inspected by two officers, a march past by men wearing medals along with boy scouts and girl guides were followed and accompanied by a brass band.
The memorial which stands approximately 20ft high poignantly depicts a life-sized WWI infantryman carved from white and mottled grey granite with his head slightly bowed, rifle pointing to the ground, he stands with his left foot slightly forward, right hand laid over the butt of the rifle, left hand folded over his right, a disconsolate expression on his face as he contemplates the loss of comrades fallen. Below his feet a sandstone cap tops a polished granite column bearing the 96 names of the fallen from World War One. Below that a tapering sandstone bears the names of another 40 from World War Two, engraved onto the front side of the sandstone cap - the words 'HONOUR THE FALLEN'. The whole memorial is seated on a two tier sandstone base which includes four steps, plus the addition of a modern steel fence which stands about 2ft high surrounding the monument.
The location of the memorial is at the road junction between Gillett Lane and Oulton Lane, between Rothwell shopping precinct and Rothwell Park. The land on which it stands along with the nearby houses was once farmland belonging to Whitehall Farm. The Report and Statement of Accounts record that the land was kindly given for the memorial by: Major H.W. Calverley. That Thomas Stainer was commissioned to make the piece and was paid a sum of £500.
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