Friday 13 December 2013

Catastrophe Averted at St Mary's Worsbro' Village - Narrow escape for War Memorial

I come home from the Archives each week with a nice fat pile of newspaper cuttings (well, actually virtual cuttings in these electronic times) and then it takes me a while to process them.  I'm supposed to be labelling and tallying them into my War Memorials spreadsheet at the moment, but considering where GB and I went last night I can't resist this one.

Barnsley Chronicle 18 March 1922
(thanks to Barnsley Archives)


St Mary's Church - In December last, part of the West Wall of the above church fell, bringing down with it a small stained-glass window.  Fortunately only the outer part of the wall collapsed, the thick inner wall - on which is the War Memorial Tablet - remained standing.  The work of re-building had to be arranged at once and the necessary money provided.  In the meantime Mr W R Steele kindly sent men with timber and the wall was boarded up, to ensure safety.  The Vicar convened a meeting of the Parochial Church Council, and it was decided that a circular letter be written to all on the electoral roll, and distributed along with small envelopes - for contributions - by members of the Council.  In this way £34 2s 9d was collected.  Friends outside the parish were written to, and the following subscriptions received: - From Capt. Wentworth, £10; Mrs Cooper-Mann, £5; Miss Cooper-Mann £5; the Rev. W H Elmhirst, £2; Mrs Guest (Egremont), 5s and £5 10s was given from the proceeds of a Jumble Sale in the Church Room, Birdwell.  The cost of the work, including taking down and refixing the War Memorial Tablet, amounted to £75 5s 9d.  Mr W R Steele, managing director, Barrow Colliery, had generously offered to pay the deficiency, and gave the sum of £13 10s, that being the amount needed to cover all charges.  The Vicar (Rev F C Stock) and the Parochial Church Council wish to gratefully thank those who willingly and generously gave towards the fund, that their Church might be restored.  The work of building the wall was entrusted to Mr Rawson Porter, the window to Mr Rusforth and the taking down and re-fixing of the Tablet to Mr F W Oxley.
A white painted church wall, with a small window placed very high up.  The memorial tablet is decorated top and bottom with carving and there are four columns of names upon it.  On either side are dark slate strips with gold painted names for the 1939-45 war.  A shelf below carries candles and poppies.
The West Wall of St Mary's church, Worsbrough Village

In a follow up to a cutting I found a week or so ago about the unveiling of a mystery memorial in Worsbro' my friend GB and I visited St Mary's last night, were made very welcome and took lots of photos of the War Memorial tablet.  There is a full list of names on that linked post on the Barnsley War Memorials Project site and a larger picture of the tablet itself.

As you can see the Memorial plaque is a lovely marble tablet, with more recent additions in slate either side for the Second World War names.  I'm so glad it didn't fall and break when the wall collapsed!

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