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Location:St Bartholomew's School, Wormestall building
OS Map Ref:SU464663
Description:Brass plaque
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Ad Lucem 1914-1919
To The Memory of/ Old Newburians who/ fell in the Great War
Allen W H
Allnatt H L
Bance R A
Buckingham P E
Burgess N G
Cannon H S
Chislett H J W
Cowell-Townshend R
Cox C W
Curnock G A
Davies P E
Davis A H
Edwards F A L
Evers B S
Giles L
Griffen H S
Hallen J V
Harris L A
Herbert G W
Jones S W
Mathews S W
Mortimer F C
Myddleton E G
Nash J O
Patterson R A
Payze A R
Pearson K H
Plenty E P
Quarterman P H
Ravenor G P
Ravenor H
Robinson A H
Salway D G
Savage E G
Sharp F H
Shipley A J
Shutler R
Somerset F H
Stevens E J
Swinley G N B
Tanner M A
Warren C M
Wilde E J
Wyllie A

[Note: Formerly located in the Wormestall building of the old Newbury Grammar School this memorial was moved to its current location in the school reception area when the new school was built in 2010.]

What the papers said:

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The Newburian, November 1921

The Unveiling of the Memorial Tablet

After the usual Speech Day proceedings, there was an assembly of Past and Present Boys, and of relatives, in the Big Schoolroom, to witness the unveiling of the Memorial Tablet. The ceremony opened with the reading of the Roll of the Fallen, by the Headmaster.

Then, after the singing of Robert Browning’s hymn “Thronging through the cloud rift,” Doctor Robert Bridges addressed those present. He said the memorial was a loving and proud remembrance of those of their Old Schoolboys who lost their lives in the Great War, defending their homes from invasion and destruction in a crisis of extreme peril – a crisis not only for their country, but in the world’s history, an event of which they did not yet see the end, nor could even guess the full meaning. Whatever future might be in store for England, the memorial would remain as long as the School remained, an honour and source of just pride to those families whose names it would preserve. But to the boys, whom it would face daily, the monument would have a deep spiritual import and affect their lives for good. The record of that appalling calamity would present to their minds and bear in upon them the truth that their life on earth was a trial of character and virture, and that their mettle might be put in touch and test at any moment and without warning. Long as that cloud of war had threatened them, it was disregarded; and it was in a time of peace and apparent security that those men and boys, the likes of themselves, were suddenly called to sacrifice all. Let their nobility be a stimulus to their own. Let their story burn into their hearts the heroic meaning of human life – that to be good men, good citizens, they must be single-hearted servants of God. Single-hearted, so that when their call came – or whatever lesser trial they might have – there would be no hesitation, no temptation of worldly secondary things which could possibly weigh with them to deflect their will from their high vocation. Train themselves to think seriously and to live worthily and cleanly from day to day, and then they would be ready and not bewildered if their call should come at an hour when they looked not for it, and in a strange form. Those men were inspired and sustained by a strong national enthusiasm, patriotism. What was patriotism? True patriotism was to make themselves noble, each one of them. That was the true patriotism, and that was also the true socialism. When they were all noble, they would have their Utopia; but no Utopian dreams, no socialistic scheme would ever teach them nobility.

Of that single-heartedness there was one simple necessary consequence of which he would speak, and that was the forgiveness of injustices. It was unpleasant to him that he should feel in danger of offending some of them by reminding them of that primary essential Christian duty, and that although they, no doubt all of them, said the Lord’s Prayer daily; yet there could be no peace, no reconciliation of Europe until the enemies forgave. Do not be put off by thinking that forgiveness implied that they had among themselves. No, it was rather a generosity of temper and conduct. A generosity which led, no doubt, to kindly fellow feeling. But they were not excused from generous conduct because they lacked the emotion which would make it spontaneous. They were, no doubt, all of them weakened by long conflict and torture of soul. At that time when their self-denial and utmost efforts were needed to save their society from dearth and dissolution, what was their attitude? Was it fair to judge the temper of the nation by its general behaviour. And if so, what did they see around them. What did they read in the common newspapers? Unthrift, frivolity, extravagance, callousness, ever to crime, idle dissipation and amusements, frippery, bad manners. Those things, to their shame, thickly overlaid so as to hide the honest work of those who were silently but strenuously toiling for their recovery. But, indeed their fibre had been so racked and enfeebled that they could even mistake a stiffness and diseased rigidity for a sign of healthy strength, so that many of them were believing that hate was stronger than love, revenge more manly than forgiveness. Let them remember that ill-feeling, revenge, hate and fear were the causes of war. Gentleness and forgiveness were the cure and antidotes – the only cure, there was none other. Remember, too, that their soldiers did not hate. Let his plea come to them as a voice from those dead whom they would honour to-day, but whom they most disastrously and utterly wronged if they, through pride and ill-feeling, proved themselves unworthy and unable to secure the peace and gather the fruits of the victory which they died to win. He had been asked there as a poet, so he would quote them a few verses which he hoped would be familiar to many of them, for they were “Strong words which may never pass away”:

Love from its awful throne of patient power

In the wise heart, from the last giddy hour

Of dread endurance, from the slippery step,

And narrow verge of craglike agony, springs

And folds over the world its healing wings

Gentleness, Virtue, Wisdom and Endurance,

These are the seals of that most firm assurance.

These are the spells by which to re-assume

An Empire o’er the disentangled gloom.

To suffer woes which Hope thinks infinite;

To forgive wrongs darker than death or night.

This is to be

Good, great and joyous, beautiful and free;

This alone Life, Joy, Empire and Victory.

Mr Sharwood Smith, in thanking Dr Bridges for his beautiful words, said he wanted a poet to unveil the memorial because it was the poet who saw the real things of life and death.

The ceremony closed with the singing of the School Song.

The Tablet is a handsome work in bronze, with the School arms at the top and at the foot the inscription: “The the memory of Old Newburians who fell in the Great War.”

The following is the Roll of the Fallen as inscribed on the Tablet:

W H Allen J A Nash
H L Allnatt R A Patterson
R A Bance A R Payze
P E Buckingham K H Pearson
N G Burgess E P Plenty
H S Cannon P H Quarterman
H J W Chislett H Ravenor
R Cowell-Townsend G P Ravenor
G W Cox A H Robinson
G A Curnock D G Salway
P E Davies E G Savage
A H Davis F H Sharp
F A L Edwards A J Shipley
B S Evers R Shutler
L Giles F H Somerset
H S Griffin E J Stevens
J V Hallen C H B Swinley
L A Harris M A Tanner
S W Jones C M Warren
S W Matthews E J Wilde
F C Mortimer A Wyllie
E G Myddleton

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 Died this day:
22 June 1917
W J Butler

British Legion

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