Maltby War Memorial (Maltby Cenotaph), Blyth Road, Maltby, Rotherham, South Yorkshire.
The Maltby War Memorial was unveiled by the Earl of Scarborough and dedicated by the Bishop of Sheffield on Sunday 27th July 1924. Crafted from Cornish granite by Messrs Tyas and Guest of Swinton, it consists of a square-section pillar surmounted on a square, two-stepped plinth and a crowning finial.
At a cost of approximately £400(1) and funded by public subscription, the cenotaph was made to commemorate the 101 men of Maltby who fell in the Great War. Their names are inscribed alphabetically on three faces of the main pillar.
The front of the Maltby War Memorial faces Blyth Road. And on that face, above the names of the fallen, are inscribed the words:
1914 – 1918.
THE GLORIOUS MEMORY
OF THE MEN OF MALTBY
WHO FELL IN
THE GREAT WAR.
And beneath the names on the memorial’s main face, the words are carved:
“LEST WE FORGET.”
The list of names continues in alphabetical order on the right face of the memorial with the list concluding on the left face. The rear side of the memorial is blank.
Subsequently, metal plaques were added to the stone plinth beneath the main pillar to commemorate the 77 men of Maltby who died in the Second World War. Those names are also ordered alphabetically, following sequentially in an anti-clockwise direction around the monument, although there is no plaque on the rear side of the memorial.
Above the names on the first plaque, the words are written:
1939 ~ 45
“AT THE GOING DOWN OF THE SUN AND IN THE MORNING WE WILL REMEMBER THEM”
The memorial was rededicated on 27th July 2002 having been renovated by Elden Minns & Co. Ltd. of Sheffield.
Maltby War Memorial: Unveiling And Dedication, Sunday 27th July 1924
MALTBY WAR MEMORIAL
UNVEILED BY THE EARL OF SCARBOROUGH
Maltby War Memorial was unveiled last night by Major-General the Earl of Scarborough, and dedicated by the Bishop of Sheffield (Dr. L. H. Burrows). There were also present Mr. Herbert Smith (President of the Yorkshire Miners’ Association) and County Alderman E. Dunn.
The Earl of Scarborough, in unveiling the memorial, said as one who had lived in the parish all his life he regarded it as an honour and a privilege to perform that ceremony. He thought that that memorial completed a circle of remembrances in the group of towns and villages in that corner of Yorkshire. It was a visible and enduring tribute to valour and patriotic endeavour. They could not repay the men for their sacrifice; they could only do homage to their memory. That memorial stood first for remembrance, and, secondly, he thought, as a reminder and warning that a world war achieved nothing but misery and chaos to victors and vanquished alike. As regards the League of Nations, many regarded it as the world’s sheet anchor and hope for the future. We must pray God that it would be so, but so far the Anglo-Saxon race alone supported its full aims and ideals.
Among those placing wreaths on the memorial were Captain E. E. Dufty(2), Mr. Herbert Smith, and County Alderman E. Dunn.
“He thought that that memorial completed a circle of remembrances in the group of towns and villages in that corner of Yorkshire.”
The Earl of Scarborough’s unveiling speech intimates that Maltby was one of the last communities in Yorkshire to receive a permanent war memorial. And it is old church magazines that attest to this:
Twenty months earlier in 1922, the vicar of Maltby, the Rev. C. E. Hughes, called for a permanent War Memorial to replace the tiny, plain, wooden cross that ex-servicemen had erected on the Crags.
“I wish we had a permanent memorial of the Great Sacrifice in Maltby. Nearly every village and town in England possesses one.”
The intention of Hughes was to raise a substantial amount of money to purchase a memorial design that would easily accommodate the 101 names of the Maltby men who had fallen in the Great War. And the chosen design accomplished this.
Despite the efforts of Hughes, newspaper reports did not hesitate to state that the Maltby War Memorial was erected more than five-and-a-half-years after the Armistice of 11th November 1918.
The Maltby War Memorial was erected on the site of the original, tiny, wooden cross; the unveiling ceremony taking place before ‘an immense crowd of spectators’.
Notes & Acknowledgements:-
(1) – The purchase price of the memorial, £400, would be equivalent to approximately £21,000 in today’s money, based on inflation alone.
(2) – Captain E. E. Dufty – Could this be GP E. E. Dufty? (More research required)
References used: Rotherham & District War Memorials, Westwood, F. and Featherstone, A., Published 2003, Pages 194 – 196. | Alice Rodgers’ Article for Maltby History Society: The Origins Of The Crags War Memorial.
Many thanks to Ian Waugh of Old British News who located, with great speed, two news articles from July 1924 regarding the unveiling of the Maltby War Memorial.
Photographs taken Saturday 1st March 2014 with a Nikon D5100 and AF-S Nikkor 55mm-300mm Lens. Images shot RAW and converted to monochrome with Silver Efex Pro 2. High resolution images available on Flickr.