Memorial Details

NEWMP Memorial Image
Photo : John Rippon


Plaque 1914-18 United Methodist





Map ref


Original Location

Cornsay Colliery Methodist New Connexion Chapel (demolished)

Present Location

2015 - Church of St. Michael and All Angels at Esh

Which war


Dedication, Creation or Publication date

Unveiled Dec. 1919 by Mrs. Curry of Hawkshill Villa

Memorial Description

Plaque 3 feet 11 inches (1.19m) high x 3 feet 8 inches (1.11m) wide. (It use to rest on a black marble pattress). There is a border of red marble culminating in a raised motif in each corner. The central plaque is of white marble which is divided by strips of the red marble into four panels. The upper and lower horizontal panels contain the dedication and the quotation respectively. The two central panels are vertical and contain the names in a single column on each. Lettering is incised and blackened, using capitals for the names and lower case for the quotation at the bottom.

Materials used



In Memoriam. / The Great War 1914-1919 / (Names). / They died for King and Country.


Present condition

Fair, on the floor of the church not mounted. Hidden from view.


1. "Cornsay Colliery - Portrait of a Durham Mining Village" carries the following information:

The difficult days of the Second World War claimed sons of the village once more as its victims – some remembered include Clifford Walker, a flier in the R.A.F., Bernard Caygill killed as a dispatch rider and George Groves of the R.A.F. who died as the evacuation ship "Lancastria" was sunk off St. Nazaire. There was Thomas Bennet from Union Street who had joined the Guards before the war. Other names appearing on the memorial in Hamsteels Church which covers the Quebec and Cornsay areas are G. Stevenson, A. Caile, W. Rippon, J. Quinn, A. Armstrong, T. Armstrong and Edward Greener.
Perhaps the blackest years for the village families was 1914-1918. Many young men of Cornsay Colliery served in the Great War and many paid the Supreme Sacrifice. Sons of the village ‘went down’ at various times during the four years of the war, but perhaps the period around July 1st 1916 brought more communal grief than at any other time. The Battle of the Somme claimed many, and the Roll of Honour which used to hang in the Chapel and is now in the church at Quebec records the fallen of the First World War as follows"
: (Here the list is copied and agrees with the names below.)

2. The same paper records that Pte. A. Constantine, D.L.I. was awarded the Military Medal and Italian Croce di Guerra.

3. When the village chapel closed and was demolished in the early 1960s, this plaque was moved to St. John the Baptist Parish Church at Quebec. In 2011 this building was closed and put up for sale and the plaque, along with 2 others, was transferred to the Church of St. Michael and All Angels in Esh Village where they are in now storage.

4. There are plans to re-locate this Memorial.

Newspaper cuttings, photos or archival material

Photos: John and Mavis Dixon; James Pasby

Auckland and County Chronicle 25/12/1919 reports unveiling.

In Durham County Library ; Cornsay Colliery - Portrait of a Durham Mining Village": 1975; Thomas T Ayer. Updated with corrections in 2012 by his son Tom Ayer.

External web link

Research acknowledgements

Fitzhugh Collection, Middleton in Teesdale; John and Mavis Dixon; Tom Ayer; John Rippon: Pauline Priano

Research In Progress

All the names on this memorial have been researched. See Every Name a Story entries.

Plaque 1914-18 United Methodist (C116.01)

CORNSAY United Methodist Church 
   In Memoriam
   Great War 1914 – 1918
   Sergt. W. Chaplain   N.F.   Lce.Cpl. S. Steele       D.L.I.
   "      A. Keepin      "      Pte.    J.T. Dunning     "
   "      T. Rippon      "      "       F. Hird          "
   Pte.   T. McKenna     "      "       H. Walton        "
   "      J. Walker      "      "       W. Black         "
   "      W. Disberry    "      "       G.B. Walton      "
   "      R. Jackson     "      "       A. Constantine   "
   "      G. Luke        "      "       M. Bevan         "
   "      J.G. Morallee  "      "       G.N. Storey      "
   "      C. Dolphin     "      "       G. Hall          "
   "      C. Sadler      "      "       T. Liddle      K.O.Y.L.I.
   "      F. Chapman     "      Cpl.    J. Crabb       K.R.
   "      P. Crinnion    "      "       R. Hirst       E.Y. 
   "      G. Cutmore     "      "       J. Marriott    B.R.
   "      J. Tobin       "      "       C. Whiteley    R.F.A.
   "      J.W. Taylor    "      "       C. Smith       L.R.B.
   "      W. Hanley      "      "       W.C. Lewis     M.G.R.N.D.
   "      J. Harbisher H.L.I.   "       R. Wall        N.F.
   "      J.W. Cutmore D.L.I.   "       W.J. Barrett   G.H.
   "      J. Batey     "      
   They died for King and Country

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Parish Notes

Every Name A Story