Memorial Details

Photo: Robert Preston


Soldier Statue 1914-18 1939-45 Roadside





Map ref

NZ 295818

Original Location

The north side of the Cowpen Road beside the corrugated iron building formerly known as the “Tin Chapel”
at present being used as an old people's day centre. Relocated to the south side of the road after the 1939-45 war.

Present Location

Junction of Cowpen Road with Briardale Road.

Which war

a. 1914-18
b. 1939-45

Dedication, Creation or Publication date

a. Unveiled on original site December 1920; unveiled again after move 13th September 1924 by Lt. Col. Sidney, D.S.O., a native of the village, dedicated by Rev. H.P. Cutter.

Memorial Description

Soldier statue 6 feet(1.9m) high with rifle in reversed arms position, standing on a square column 20 inches (504mm) square and 6 (1.9m) feet high, itself standing on a base 42 inches square.
On the front face, on a sloping pediment, are carved several tools. There are carved panels of aircraft attacking a Zeppelin and submarines attacking a ship.
The inscription is on the pediment above this, the names for 1914-18 are listed on three marble panels and another bears the names for 1939-45, all in sans serif capitals.

Materials used

Stone and concrete with marble panels.


To the memory / of the men of / Cowpen and District / who made the / Supreme Sacrifice / in the wars of / 1914 -1918 and 1939-45
Their Name liveth for evermore.


Who commissioned

War Memorial Committee (Chair Rev. F. Kershaw)

How money was raised

Site gifted by Thoroton and Croft Trustees.

Present condition

Restored 1998.

Sculptor, Artist or Designer

Messrs. Endean of Cramlington and Blyth.

Ownership and maintenance

At the unveiling ceremony, the memorial was handed over to Blyth Corporation.


1. The men from the village had earned between them 1 D.S.O., 1 Military Cross, 2 D.C.Ms., 2 Croix de Guerre, 1 Military Medal with bar, and 11 Military Medals.

2. It was noted just before the 50th Anniversary of the end of WWII in 1995 that the rifle was missing. The missing rifle had been reported to this survey at least a year before that.

3. In 1998, an appeal to raise £1,175 was launched to have the memorial restored. Messrs. Bart Endean, Monumental sculptors, had agreed to supply and fix the rifle free of charge, which would have cost £400-500.

4. Following the restoration in 1998, a wooden structure surrounding the memorial was removed so the statue stands in the middle of flower beds.

5. In 1999 the rifle was stolen yet again. The pieces are being held by the local TA unit.

6. "The war memorial of the soldier standing with reversed arms, copies in Cowpen Village, Shiremoor Village and, I believe, other places in the north east was modelled by my father, who at various times worked for the sculptor, Bart Endean of Blyth. The original Plaster model stood in view in the workshop on Croft Road for at least 40 years." Letter dated 26/05/2005 from Mr. J.A. Crozier.

7. The 1998 restoration was partly funded by a donation of £200 from Friends of War Memorials.

8. The stone rifle was broken off below the hands. The black paint in the lettering was weathering away. Restored 1998 by Ken Common of Bart Endean who replaced the missing hand-carved rifle free of charge. It was stolen almost straight away.

9. The first world war list of names contains that of ‘C.S.M. Stokoe‘, which should have been ‘Stoker‘. This error was corrected at the time of the 1998 restoration at the request of his niece.

10. Lt.Col. Sidney, who unveiled the memorial in 1924, was “ a distinguished son of the village” and had come from Worcester for the ceremony.

11. In 2018 "The Cowpen memorial was cleaned and restored and the lettering on the plaques repainted. The most significant part of the restoration on this memorial was the replacement of the soldier which was beyond repair. Costs were £12,375.00 Substantial donations were made by the Elswick (Blyth) All Arms Association and the Freemasons of Northumberland towards the cost of the new soldier statue." Blyth Town Council website

Newspaper cuttings, photos or archival material

Photos: Tony Harding; Robert Preston; Photos of statue in arched surround: Jack Tait

Shields Daily News 26/01/1923 reports gift of site; 13/09/1924 reports unveiling; 06/07/1925 reports vandalism.

Morpeth Herald 02/02/1923 reports gift of site; 02/03/1923, 06/04/1923 and 03/08/1923 report fund raising; 19/09/1924 reports unveiling.

Blyth News 23/12/1920 reports original unveiling; 29/01/1923 reports new site for memorial given by Thoroton and Croft Estate; 15/09/1924 reports unveiling.

Illustrated Chronicle 15/09/1924 reports second unveiling with photos.

Newcastle Weekly Chronicle 20/09/1924 reports unveiling.

News Post Leader 16/11/1995 reports that the discovery of the removal of the rifle was made by Blyth Council Officials just before Remembrance Day 1995. An estimate to replace the rifle is given as £500. 21/05/1998 reports launch of fund raising appeal. 17/12/1998 reports restoration.

Source of quotation:
2Their name liveth for evermore" Apocrypha: Ecclesiasticus 44

External web link

Links to Source Material :

Research acknowledgements

The late Jack Tait, Blyth Local History Society; the late R.W. Gould; Northumberland County Council; J. Brown; J.A. Crozier; Dorothy Hall; Neil Patton

Research In Progress

If you are researching this memorial please contact

Soldier Statue 1914-18 1939-45 Roadside (C58.02)

COWPEN, Road junction with Briardale Road.


Column 1                       Column 2
     1914-1918                    1914-1918                
         To the memory            Griffiths, W.M.          
         of the men of            Grindley, E.            
       Cowpen and District        Haley, S.  M.M.          
           who made the           Henderson, R.G., D.C.M.  
        supreme sacrifice         Hood, W.                 
         in the wars of           Harris, J.               
     1914-1918 and 1939-1945      Irving, R.S.             
                                  Jackson, C.              
     Adamson, M.                  Jackson, W.H.            
     Agnew, J.P.  M.C.            Jackson, J.              
     Aitchison, J.                Johnson, H.              
     Bartlett, J.W.               Kettle, A.               
     Campbell, J.                 Lillie, J.T.             
     Cannon, J.W.                 Mattocks, J.             
     Chamberlain, T.L             McCourt, S.T.            
     Cotterill, P.                McGrath, M               
     Courtney, P.                 McNally, J.              
     Davidson, R.F.               Middlemas, W.            
     Devlin, F.                   Middleton, F.C.          
     Dodds, J.B. M.M.             Mitchell, W.             
     Ferguson, J.H.               Mulvaney, J.             
     Fothergill, W.T.             Newton, S.               
     Gibbons, W.
     Their name liveth
       for evermore.
Column 3                       Column 4

     1914-1918                    1939-1945
     Norriss, R.C.                Brooks, J.E.
     Ord, H.J.                    Brown, A.
     Penn, J.M.                   Easton, T.
     Percy, R.J.                  Elliot, J.T.
     Purcell, J.                  Foster, E.
     Reynolds, J.                 Foster, S.S.
     Rhodes, R.D.                 Orr, J.
     Robertson, C.                Ready, W.
     Robinson, P.W.               Storey, T.
     Rolfe, T.                    Wilson, J.
     Shields, S.                  Critchley, E.
     Smith, C.                    Henstock, W.
     Snow, E.                     Hume, J.
     Stephenson, J.               Jobson, R.N.
     Stoker, J.E., M.M.           Kensall, C.
     Storey, T.                   Stoker, J.
     Summers, J.
     Swinburne, M. D.C.M.
     Toothill, H.
     Tweedy, J.
     Tweedy, T.
     Wilkinson, J.

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Parish Notes

Every Name A Story