Chedworth Remembers the Great War
Each year Chedworth holds a Remembrance Sunday service in St Andrews Church. We also mark the specific date of the Armistice every 11 November with a small ceremony which is led by our Branch of the Royal British Legion at a village memorial. We have 2 memorials bearing the names of those brave men of our village who made the ultimate sacrifice; one is in St Andrews Church and the other outside the former Congregational Chapel.
In the porch of St Andrews there are also 6 wood memorial panels (“The Roll of Honour”) listing 111 men from Chedworth who served with the colours in the Great War. In addition to the national commemorations of centenaries of World War I between August 2014 and November 2018 a small project team undertook a village history project to research and document the stories of those servicemen from our village who laid down their lives and of those who served and returned.
The Chedworth Remembers Project
The first stage of the project was the restoration of the Roll of Honour in the church porch. This was completed in November 2014 with the assistance of the Heritage Lottery Fund and village charities. An additional panel was added at that time, marking the restoration and adding the names of 4 men and 2 women whose names had been omitted from the original 6 panels in 1921.
The Book and Video
Apart from the restoration, the aim of the project was also to research and to record the many stories of those Chedworth men and the families they left behind at that time. The result was the publication in March 2014 of a 228 page book which, together with research material was lodged with archives, museums and libraries. A 9 minute video of photographs and stories of our men of who served in the British Forces during the Great War was also produced as a memorial to the men who would not return to our lovely village. The book (in pdf form) may be freely downloaded from this site. The video is available on YouTube.
Work on the project should have started forty years before when many of the men who went to war were still within our community, but the opportunity has largely been lost and cannot be reclaimed from history. However, the Roll of Honour in the porch of St Andrew’s church has been the rock on which this project has been built and we owe a huge debt of gratitude to our villagers of 100 years ago for creating this unique record and to the Heritage Lottery Fund and village charities for supporting its restoration.
The Chedworth Remembers the Great War project has been an interesting and rewarding experience for all of us involved and we hope that you feel that the result is a worthy tribute to those of our village who served.
Mike Tovey and Peter Seymour OBE