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Memorial details

Memorial type
Cenotaph
District
City Of Westminster
Town
Whitehall
County
Greater London
Country
England
Commemoration
First World War (1914-1918), Second World War (1939-1945)
Maker
SIR EDWIN LUTYENS, HOLLAND, HANNEN AND CUBITTS LTD.
Ceremony
  • Unveiled
    Date: 11 November 1920
    Attended by: HM KING GEORGE V
Lost
Not lost
WM Reference
104
Current location

In the centre of Whitehall
Whitehall
Whitehall
City Of Westminster
Greater London
SW1A 2NJ
England

OS Grid Ref: TQ 30161 79859
Denomination: Undefined

View location on Google Maps
Description
Cenotaph in the form of a tall plinth surmounted by a sculpted empty casket, symbolising the tomb of the dead. 'Cenotaph' is Greek for 'Empty Tomb'. There are carved wreaths on the front and rear faces and on the top of the casket. Flags are supported by flag holders on the south face.
Inscription
THE/ GLORIOUS/ DEAD/ 1914 - 1918/ 1939 - 1945
Inscription legible?
yes
Commemorations
  • First World War (1914-1918)
    Total names on memorial: 0
    Served and returned: 0
    Died: 0
    Exact count: yes
    Information shown: Undefined
    Order of information: Undefined
  • Second World War (1939-1945)
    Total names on memorial: 0
    Served and returned: 0
    Died: 0
    Exact count: yes
    Information shown: Undefined
    Order of information: Undefined
Components
  • Cenotaph
    Measurements: height 36FT
    Materials: Stone
Listing information
  • The Cenotaph
  • Grade I
  • This memorial is protected, and listed on the National Heritage List for England maintained by Historic England. View list entry
  • More about listing and the protection of historic places can be found on the Historic England website
  • Historic England
Condition
History
2013: Cleaned. English Heritage. Dec. 2010: A student was arrested for swinging from the flags on the Cenotaph during a student demonstration. 2000: Painted with graffiti in the May Day riots. Cleaned within days. Grade I listed
Costs

Memorial: £7325

Trust fund/Scholarship
No
Purpose: Unknown or N/A
Sponsorship
Other
Responsibility
English Heritage since 1999
Reference
  • AT THE GOING DOWN OF THE SUN: BRITISH FIRST WORLD WAR MEMORIALS by BOORMAN, DEREK 157 Source: Image Library NIWM Published:SESSIONS 1988 YORK
  • Carter Postcard Collection
  • Private Eye No.1366 (16-29 May 2014) Frequent recent cleaning has damaged surface of the Portland stone.
  • War Memorials Trust Bulletin No.59 (Nov. 2013) pp.1,6,7 Published:War Memorials Trust London Report on recent cleaning of memorial.
  • Metro 27 June 2013 p.41 Photographs of cleaning and repointing.
  • Sunday Times 5 / 20 Jan 2013 Proposed First World War Centenary project to have the names of the c9.5 million of all nations who lost their lives, projected on to a wall behind the Cenotaph.
  • The Guardian 8 / 14th Nov 2011
  • Daily Star 6,7 / 14th Nov 2011
  • Daily Express 5 / 14th Nov 2011 The Duchess of Cambridge attends Remembrance Service for the first time.
  • Daily Telegraph 6,7 / 14th Nov 2011
  • The Sun 9 / 14th Nov 2011 Double amputee Lydia Cross (10 yrs) joins parade of troops in recognition of her contributions to Help For Heroes.
  • The Times 15 / 14th Nov 2011 Double amputee Lydia Cross (10 yrs) joins parade of troops in recognition of her contributions to Help For Heroes.
  • Evening Standard 11/ 6 May 2011
  • Metro 10 Dec 2010
  • Private Eye No.1172 (2006) p.16 Comment on proposal to flank with bollards and balustrades.
  • British Silent Cinema and the Great War by Michael Hammond and Michael Williams (Eds.) 145-158 Published:Palgrave Macmillan 2011 Chapter 11: 'The Dead, Battlefield Burials and the Unveiling of War Memorials in Films of the Great War Era' by Toby Haggith
  • Percy Simmonds Photograph Collection
  • Published:English Heritage
  • Our Blog ukniwm.wordpress.com/2007/11/07/images-of-the-cenotaph/
  • Our Blog ukniwm.wordpress.com/2007/09/06/modelling-memorials/
  • Our Blog ukniwm.wordpress.com/2007/06/20/temporary-memorials-part-one/
  • Source: Image Library NIWM Published:LEO COOPER 1991 LONDON
  • Illustrated London News 26 July 1919 pp. 119, 127. Special issue for Peace Celebrations, including two drawings depicting the Cenotaph.
  • Imperial War Museum, Film Archive MGH 505
  • In the Imperial War Museum Archives Collections are various original designs for the Cenotaph-References are ART 1551, ART 3991 and ART 16377

This record comprises all information held by IWM’s War Memorials Register for this memorial. Where we hold a names list for the memorial, this information will be displayed on the memorial record. Please check back as we are adding more names to the database.

This information is made available under a Creative Commons BY-NC licence.

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For queries, please contact memorials@iwm.org.uk.