AINSDALE WAR MEMORIAL

The village green, Liverpool Road, Ainsdale, Sefton PR8 3NF

Ainsdale’s War Memorial is located on the village green. Listed upon the memorial are the names of 49 Service men and one military nurse, who gave their lives in The Great War.

The Memorial

Ainsdale’s memorial was procured through public subscription and erected in 1920.

A Celtic wheel cross with central Celtic knot-work design is carved in Stoke Hall stone. The dates 1914-1919 are carved on both horizontal arms of the cross, and below, the shaft portion is richly carved. The cross surmounts a smooth tapering plinth and two-stepped base. Mr W. Callard of Birkdale carved and erected the Memorial, and Mr H. Langman of Southport prepared the architectural designs.

The main inscription is on the front plinth face and the two bases; the names of the fallen are inscribed on three remaining plinth faces in Iat lead lettering. A paved area and a low stone wall with metal gates surrounds the cross; situated outside the wall are benches and planted fIower-beds. 43 names are recorded for the First World War, and this includes one woman. Names of the fallen from the Second World War and subsequent confIicts have been included.

Unveiling Ceremony

The Memorial was dedicated and unveiled on Saturday 27th November 1920. The procession from St John’s Church walked to the memorial and included scouts, 100 girl guides from 17 companies in Southport, pupils from the Farm School and their band, 250 local school children and bereaved relatives. Other dignitaries present included the Mayor, the Bishop Chavasse of Liverpool, ex-Service men, the Chief Constable, Col. White MP, and Sir James Paten JP. Clergy present at the ceremony were Rev. W. Webster (Vicar of St John’s), J.S. Drummond (Ainsdale Congregational), W. Brocklebank (Wesleyan) and the Vicar from Banks, R.H. Watts.

The ceremony started with “Oh God our help in ages past”. Colonel White gave a moving speech and drew aside the Union Jack from the cross. Rev. Drummond read a lesson (Revelations VII); the Bishop of Liverpool dedicated the cross, and Miss Leila Howard sang Tennyson’s “Crossing the bar”. The Bishop of Liverpool paid tribute the fallen heroes of Ainsdale, and the hymn “On the Resurrection morning” followed. The ceremony concluded with a blessing from the Bishop, and the “Last Post” being sounded. This was followed by the National Anthem.

A memorial re-dedication service was held on Sunday 19th October 2014. Ainsdale Civic Society organised a campaign to raise funds and refurbish the memorial, and add the names of the fallen from the Second World War and subsequent confIicts. Rev. Peter Todd represented the churches of Ainsdale and led the service. Members of the Ainsdale Civic Society read aloud the 36 names added to the memorial. Benefactors and other organisations, including Sefton Council, laid wreaths, and young people from local youth groups laid 100 white roses. Moving speeches and dedications followed, and the ceremony concluded with “Pack up your troubles” and the National Anthem.


Inscription

The front Cross dates 1914-1919
Front Plinth Base inscription:

“True love by life/ True love by death is tried/ Live thou for England/ We for England died”

First step front:

“Greater love hath no man than this that a man lay down his life for his friends”

Front Plinth Base:

“In memory of those who gave their lives in the second world war 1939 – 1945.

The names of the fallen appear on the remaining plinth panels.
The lower rear base plinth:

“Erected by the residents as a mark of respect and affection”.


Read the names of the fallen

Ainsdale War Memorial Report Tues November 30th 1920, Southport Visiter.


Images used on sample design accredited to:Photographs on Sefton Looking Back https://www.sefton-digital-archive.org/

Ainsdale War Memorial Gallery