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Vange
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Vange War Memorial


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War Memorial, Vange Vange War Memorial War Memorial as seen in front of St. Chad's church.
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Location: Paynters Hill
Year of photo: circa 1925
Copyright: N/A
Source: Commercial Postcard
Comments: Vange war memorial in its original location at Paynters Hill.
Location: Clay Hill Road
Photographer: Bix
Year of photo: 01/12/2002
Copyright: Basildon History Online
Comments: Vange War Memorial seen in front of St. Chad's Church.
Location: Clay Hill Road
Photographer: Bix
Year of photo: 01/12/2002
Copyright: Basildon History Online
Comments: The 21 names on Vange War Memorial.
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St. Chad's Church, Vange   
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Location: Clay Hill Road
Photographer: Bix
Year of photo: 01/12/2002
Copyright: Basildon History Online
Comments: St. Chad's Church.
  
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Vange War Memorial was first unveiled on 26th November, 1922. It commemorates the twenty one men from the district who fell in the Great War (1914 - 1918).

Its original location was at Paynters Hill, which at that time was a short stretch of road forming the original route of the A13 London to Southend road. It stood on a piece of uneven land behind a metal fence on the bend of the main rise.

The unveiling ceremony was held on a Sunday and undertaken by the High Sheriff of Essex, Col. Francis Whitmore, C.M.G., D.S.0., J.P., of Orsett Hall, who served in the First World War. The 1st Bishop of Chelmsford, The Rt. Rev. John Edwin Watts-Ditchfield performed the dedication service. The service was attended by relatives and friends of the fallen who, along with the Laindon British Legion, laid wreaths at the foot of the memorial. The Comrades' Band from Billericay provided vocal accompaniment to the gathered congregation.

The memorial is made from Cornish granite and takes the form of a Celtic cross that sits atop a tapered plinth formed from a square shaped base which itself sat on a concrete base of unequal height to compensate for its uneven location. There is a single step abutting the plinth (see notes 4). The names of the twenty one men are engraved on its leading face.

A war memorial fund had been established in 1919 and with the aid of voluntary contributions by November had raised £105 8/- (40p) towards its eventual cost.

It was the first of three such commemorative monuments to first world war casualties to be erected within the area that would become Basildon New Town. The two others being at Station Lane, Pitsea, unveiled in 1928, and at Laindon in 1935, where it was placed in the High Road within the grounds of the then British Legion Hall. (See more information here: Pitsea War Memorial and Laindon War Memorial.)

Inscription

The non-denominational memorial commemorates the First World War - then known as the Great War - and is inscribed in black with the names of twenty one men from the parish of Vange who fell during the conflict.

TO THE HONOURED MEMORY OF

THE MEN OF THIS PARISH WHO

FELL IN THE GREAT WAR 1914 - 1919.
blank.gif
blank.gif F.W. AVERY

T. BLAKE

C. BLANKS

W.H. BROWN

F.J. BROWNJOHN - R.N.

J. CARTER - M.M.

J. CLARKE

R. J. CRANFIELD

L.W. DOE - R.N.

W.J. EDWARDS
E. HARRIS

F.H. HISCOX

J. HOOKER

A. HULL

E. JIGGINS

F. JOHNSON

J. JOHNSON

S.J. McLACHLAN - M.M.

ST. J.A.P. METHUEN

A. MOTTANT
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F.C. RUST
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THEIR NAME LIVETH FOR EVERMORE
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IN MEMORY OF ALL THOSE WHO HAVE

FALLEN IN THE SERVICE OF THEIR COUNTRY
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The full names of most of the twenty one are as follows:

Frederick William Avery (d. 11/10/1918), Thomas Blake (d. 20/02/1916), Charles Blanks (d. 15/04/1917), William Henry Brown (d. ??/06/1916), Frederick J. Brownjohn (b. 28/12/1880 - d. 09/07/1917), Joseph Carter (d. 26/09/1916), John Clark (d. 03/07/1916),
Reginald John Cranfield (d. 31/07/1917), Leonard William Doe (b. 26/06/1895 - d. 05/05/1918), William J. Edwards (03/05/1917), Emmanuel Harris (05/07/1917), Frederick Herbert Hiscox (d. 15/09/1916), James Hooker (20/01/1917), A. Hull, Edward Jiggins (d. 20/07/1916), F. Johnson, James Johnson (26/09/1917), Sidney James McLachlan (d. 08/11/1918), St. John Arthur Paul Methuen (b. 19/11/1892 - d. 20/07/1918), A. Mottant and Frederick Charles Rust (26/10/1916).

Resited to St. Chad's Church, Clay Hill Road

In the late 1950s a new church, St. Chad's, was built in Timberlog Lane (now Clay Hill Road) and it was to the grounds in front of the church that the memorial was later resited. It remains there to this day.

Page added: 2013
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Other points of interest:

(1) Col. Francis Henry Douglas Charlton Whitmore, C.M.G., D.S.0., J.P., (20/04/1872–12/06/1962).
Colonel Whitmore was a British military officer who served in the second Boer War (1899–1902) and the First World War where he was promoted to Lieutenant-Colonel in 1915, and later commanding the 10th Royal Hussars. He was awarded a Distinguished Service Order (D.S.O.) in 1917.

(2) The Rt. Rev. John Edwin Watts-Ditchfield, (17/09/1861-14/07/1923), 1st Bishop of Chelmsford (24/02/1914-14/07/1923).

(3) Due to the steepness of Paynters Hill a bypass road was constructed around the mid 1920s.

(4) The single stone step that abuts the leading face of the tapered plinth was not part of the original war memorial. It is not known when it was added but its white inscription: 'IN MEMORY OF ALL THOSE WHO HAVE FALLEN IN THE SERVICE OF THEIR COUNTRY' suggests it probably dates from sometime after the Second World War or maybe even after its resiting to Clay Hill Road.

(5) The initials M.M. after the names J. Clarke and S.J. McLachlan refer to the Military Medal. This was a military decoration introduced in 1916 and awarded to British armed force personnel for bravery during land offences. It was discontinued in 1993 and replaced with the Military Cross.

(6) R.N. is an abbreviation of Royal Navy.

Text researched and written 2013 with revisions 2019.
Copyright © 2013, 2019, B. Cox - Basildon History Online. All rights reserved.

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