We recently advised by a lady from Wiltshire that she had seen a war memorial for sale on eBay and suspected it was from Leicester.
We looked at it, checked some of the more unusual names and with the help of Andrew Moore and his book “Where Leicester has Worshipped”, confirmed that to be the case.
As an organisation we will not directly buy or sell war memorials. Without being pompous about it, we do not think it is ethical. Occasionally faced with a situation like this, there is a critical need to affect a “rescue”. Losing a piece of Leicester’s heritage helps no one. We were fortunate to have two donors who offered to pay the £100 – originally £250 was demanded. We are very grateful to them.
It has an interesting story. Originally there was a WW1 war memorial of an unknown appearance in the Congregational Church on the junction of Humberstone Road and Newby Street corner. The church was bombed in 1941 and and it is presumed the memorial was totally lost. After the war, it is believed services recommenced in the church hall and this memorial was constructed from old church pews. The whole building was demolished in 1948 and the church had several subsequent moves.
How it came to be in Birmingham is a bit of a mystery – but it is now back home and can be seen in All Saints.