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Peebles War Memorial

This is perhaps the most impressive War Memorials I have ever seen. Set off the High Street through an archway into the pathway to the entrance to the Town Hall this is a distinctive memorial; a domed alcove, with pillars.

The commemorated are not just those from Peebles but from the wider County of Peeblesshire. The plaques either side of the alcove are for WW2. This is for the villages and towns of Peeblesshire.

The plaque to the left is for Peebles and Manor.

A smaller plaque on the upper left commemorates a death in Afghanistan.

The names of the WW1 dead from the villages of Newlands, Skirling, Stobo, Traquair, Tweedsmuir, Walkerburn and West Linton are on the right hand panel inside the alcove.

On the left hand panel inside the alcove the WW1 fallen from Broughton, Drumelzier, Eddleston, Innerleithen, Kirkurd, Lyne & Meggat and Manor are listed.

These villages/towns may have their own War Memorials, some of which I have photographed:

Broughton

Traquair

West Linton

The central panel inside the alcove is for Peebles alone. A huge number of names.

The inner dome, the cross and the tiled mosaic decoration give this an unusual feel, Orthodox or even Moorish.

Commonwealth War Graves

Just beyond the churchyard gates at Crail there was a sign saying Commonwealth War Graves are located here. You have to go to the other side of the church to find them.

Most of the dates are for 1941. There was a torpedo attack training base at Crail airfield during World War 2. I presume these graves are for people who died in the course of training or were injured/killed on a sortie and buried on their return.

First there are three which stand on their own.

Private D Mason, Home Guard
Sergeant A H Cunningham, RAF

Pilot Officer W R Constable

Note the first of these was a member of the Home Guard and aged only 19.

Further into the cemetery there is a larger plot of 22 graves:-

Most of the names here are of Australians or New Zealanders but one of the 22 graves is more unusual in that it is of a woman; a Wren named Sheila R McCormack.

The inscription reads, “In loving memory of my dear wife. Tread softly: my darling sleeps here.”

Very few women’s names appear on War Memorials. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a woman’s war grave before.

Crail War Memorial

Crail is a fishing village set in the East Neuk of Fife almost as far east as you can get. Its War Memorial is a particularly aesthetically pleasing one set as it is into the churchyard gateposts.

The left hand gatepost (as you look at the above) contains WW1 names.

The other post holds WW2 names.

The bench to the left of the gates is also a memorial.

WW1 in general but the second plaque commemorates specifically Colour Sergeant J T Whitelaw.

Glasgow War Memorial, George Square

It was deepest darkest December when I took these. The Christmas lights were up and on.

This is from the south east:-

From the north:-

From the east:-

The George Square side is flanked by two statues of lions. This is the southern one:-

George Square aspect, with Remembrance Day wreaths. (City Chambers in background):-

Dyce War Memorial

On our trip up north we stayed overnight in Dyce.

The War Memorial is tucked away up a side street and acts as a roundabout. It’s dignified; in the cenotaph style.


Word War 1 names are on the sides. The reverse commemorates World War 2 and mentions one Corpl Isabella Ross.

Banchory War Memorial

At the end of October we had a trip up north and stopped at Banchory for an hour or so.

The Banchory War Memorial is very unusual in shape yet extremely elegant with a square cross-section but edge-on to the main road rather than side-on, flaring out a little at the base and surmounted by a pyramidal top with a samll cross. The lower portions contain names for WW2. The main columns commemorate WW1.

This view from the other side shows the memorial gardens and the cross a bit better:-

Canongate War Memorial, Edinburgh

In October I was in Edinburgh three Saturdays in a row. The third was the only one where I didn’t go to a football game. Instead the good lady and I went to view Gladstone’s Land, wandering the Royal Mile first.

The Canongate Memorial is a plaque set into the wall of the Tollbooth in Canongate, towards the bottom of the Royal Mile. Canongate was at one time a separate burgh from Edinburgh which is why it has its own memorial.

This contains WW1 names only. The WW2 dead are commemorated in Canongate Kirk.

Pullar’s of Perth War Memorial

We were in Perth a few weeks ago and discovered the memorial to the employees of the famous former Dye and Cleaning Works, Pullar’s of Perth, who died in the two World Wars. It’s set into the wall of Pullar’s House in Kinnoull Street. We don’t normally walk past it so it was serendipitous.

For close-ups of the memorial and the names on it see the Scottish War Memorials website.

Woodstock War Memorial

After Harwich/Dovercourt we headed to Blenheim Palace which is close to Oxford, specifically by the village of Woodstock. The journey took much longer than Google Maps had suggested it would so we didn’t really have enough time there. Though we saw most of the rooms on show the Palace is huge and the grounds enormous; so much so we’ll have to go back to take it all in. (The entry gives you the option of free return within a year. Maybe in spring.)

We wandered round Woodstock itself – the buildings are made from Cotswold stone, very warm in appearance.

The War memorial is situated in the churchyard and has a simple elegant cross design on a plinth inscribed, “To the Memory of the Fallen 1914-18 1939-45 In Sure and Certain Hope.”

Dutch War Memorials

I didn’t expect to see War Memorials in out of the way places in The Netherlands. The country didn’t take part in the Great War but was of course invaded by Germany in 1940. The Dutch were unable to combat the Luftwaffe bombers – the centre of Rotterdam was destroyed – and surrendered to avoid destruction of their other cities. The fighting lasted seven days.

But then there were also the almost constant Allied bombing raids over Germany in the latter part of the war (the run-up to D-Day excepted) which flew over The Netherlands en route and on return.

It seems two such aeroplanes were shot down over or near Opende.

This view shows both memorials:-

The distinctive headstones of Commonwealth war graves can be seen. I assume these were erected after the war.

The inscription on the brick wall reads :-

In Memory of the seven heroes whose plane crashed in Opende, 15 Feb 1944.
The Residents of Opende

This is the other end of the memorial:

The aircraft was a Halifax bomber with seven crew, six of whom were Australian. It was shot down. The details are here.

Links to more information about the crew can be found on this webpage.

The other plaque on the site is for a US B 17, “Sky Queen” which came down on 28 Jul 1943.

More information about this crew is here.

In the nearby town (I would call it a town but by the Dutch definition it’s a village) of Surhuisterveen there is a War Memorial plaque on the other side of the clock tower from this view.

The inscription reads:-

In memory. To our local fallen in the war 1940-45.

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