|Matlock & Matlock Bath : The War Memorials
|Commemorating Matlock's and Matlock Bath's War Casualties
|About the Five War Memorials
|Matlock | Matlock, Hall
| Matlock Bath | Scarthin
For Names on the Memorials use the menu on the right››
"He lives in fame that dies in virtue's cause".
The War Memorial for Matlock, which is made of gritstone
taken from local quarries, is at the summit of Pic Tor in
Matlock Town. The names of 179 men who died in the Great
War of 1914 -19 are inscribed on bronze tablets on the sides
of the memorial. After the Second War of 1939 - 45 further
names, also on bronze plaques, were added to the monument
immediately below the names of the dead from the First War
and these are on three of the memorial's four sides.
Described after the unveiling as "a memorial visible
for miles around",
the photograph above shows this to be no exaggeration. Matlock
Bank, in the background, spreads across one of the opposite
hillsides. When the monument was suggested as a fitting way
to remember the war dead, Matlock's Council "secured
for time immemorial the whole of the Pic Tor Rock and land,
together with the promenade at the foot of the rock, which
runs from the Park to Dale Road".
Winding walks were added to the summit at the same time.
The memorial was unveiled by Mr. F. C. Arkwright of
Willersley, whose son's name was listed amongst the fallen,
in August 1920. His son-in-law was also a Casualty of War.
When he addressed the crowd, Frederic Arkwright spoke from
the heart about how it felt to lose someone. He added that "the
site would be applauded by every one of the inhabitants of
Matlock. It was his privilege to be able to find a site for
the memorial. He had been in that fortunate position with
regard to four memorials, and he believed that [Matlock]
would be the last and most important, because it represented
the largest population".
The commemoration ceremony took place on a very rainy Sunday
afternoon, and the memorial was unveiled in front of "one
of the largest gatherings of residents in the history of
Costing £500, it was designed by Mr. W. N. Statham
and erected by Mr. John W. Wildgoose. The President of the
War Memorial Committee, who were responsible for raising
the funds, was Mr. Lubin G. Wildgoose and the hon. secretary
was Mr. W. E. Williams.
The men who died were also remembered on the very moving
floral tributes that were sent by relatives, friends, comrades,
workmates, Matlock Urban District Council, the Scouts and
Guides, the Matlock Rifle Club, Sunday Schools and local
people who had known them. The most poignant tributes to
read are perhaps those from the small children whose young
fathers had died in the conflict.
In World War Two a number of Matlock young men were killed
within a very short space of time but there were, thankfully,
far less who perished. This time around the casualties were
more evenly spread between the three services as more were
airmen or naval personnel.
The photograph below shows scouts assembling at Artists' Corner
for the Armistice Sunday parade in the late 1940s. Bernard
Gale carries the 4th Matlock Troop Flag and adjusting his hat
is Geoff Slater, with Neil Ollerenshaw hidden from view by
Bernard. The parade marshall, in front, is Harold Briggs, Scoutmaster
of 5th Matlock Troop.
[One scout not known, sorry]
| Matlock, Hall Leys
The small Memorial on the Hall Leys, close to Matlock Bridge,
is more accessible than the one on Pic Tor and commemorates those
who died in both Wars, although individual casualties are not named.
The poppies on the wrought iron surround replicate the poppies
of Flanders Field. The inscription reads:
IN MEMORY OF
THOSE WHO FELL
IN THE TWO WORLD WARS
| Matlock Bath
This beautiful memorial is situated at the northern end
of the Promenade Gardens near the River Derwent and was
unveiled slightly earlier than the Matlock memorial, on
21 May 1921, by Mr.
F. C. Arkwright on a bright, sunny
The pedestal was made from of Cornish Granite and the figures
were carved in Carrara, Italy, out of the local marble taken
from quarries known to the Romans. Lead lettering was used.
It cost £700 and the contractor was James Beresford &
Sons of Belper.
Although it was designed for Matlock Bath, Charles Beresford (unrelated
to the contractor) has told the web mistress that two copies
were made - one for Cannock in Staffordshire and one for
Scunthorpe in Lincolnshire.
The monument lists the names of those who died in both wars
and the money for it was raised from public subscriptions.
The original inscription, on the East Side, said: "Erected
by voluntary subscription by the inhabitants of Matlock
Bath". This was removed to make room for the names of those
who died in the Second World War, but its traces can still
For those who like old postcards, below is another
picture of the Great War Memorial, Matlock Bath, surrounded
by poppy wreaths to remember the fallen.
Matlock Bath's War Memorial
The Parish Council takes good care of Matlock Bath's beautiful
monument. It is professionally cleaned every two years, as
shown by the photo of the men working on it (above).
Scarthin's Memorial is to be found on the
Promenade next to the Greyhound Pond and faces the Cromford
Mill dam; it bears the names of Casualties from both the
First and Second World Wars.The design is an ornamental street
lamp on a base of Hopton Stone and was paid for by voluntary
The stone base for the memorial had been fixed in the middle
of May, 1920.
It was unveiled on Sunday, 5th September 1920 by J. H. Toplis,
a former Private in the Army, and former sailors and soldiers
were invited to attend the ceremony to remember the nine
men from Scarthin who had died.
The hamlet was believed to have suffered proportionally more
losses than any other in Derbyshire in the First World War
as the nine men who died were out of a total of forty-five
Mr. F. C. Arkwright presided at the unveiling ceremony,
a prayer was offered by Mr. E. S. Rowarth and Mr. T. H. Ward
read the lesson. It was after this that Private Toplis unveiled
the inscription. A large number of wreaths were placed on
the Memorial by relatives, plus two from Scarthin's residents
In his address Mr. Arkwright expressed sympathy with all
the parents, adding that Mrs. Allen had lost two sons. One
of them had acted as a scout orderly to the Willersley hospital
before he joined up.
It is difficult to photograph this memorial without it being
surrounded by cars!
Although the young men of Starkholmes who died in the First
World War are commemorated on Matlock's memorial at Pic Tor,
it was decided they should have their own memorial. This
was built by Mr. John William Wildgoose and is on land near
the school (no longer there) given by Mr. Arkwright. It cost £180,
which was raised by voluntary contribution. The dedication
ceremony took place on 23rd November 1919.
Canon J. W. Kewley, Rector of Matlock, conducted the dedication
service. He was assisted by the Reverends John Bradbury,
J. W. Chippett and H. Pattison, who also gave short addresses.
Mr Arkwright, who was proud that his own son's name was on
the memorial, said that these young men had sacrificed everything
that was dear to them - even life itself.
Built from Darley Dale stone, the memorial takes the form
of a carved Runic cross. The circle in the centre of the
cross bears the words:
THEY GAVE THEIR LIVES.
Another inscription reads: Might Assails, 1914; Right Prevails,
1918". A third says: "Erected by the inhabitants
of the villages of Starkholmes and Riber in honour of the
soldiers who gave their lives for right and liberty in the
great war of 1914-1918".
The memorial at Starkholmes is high on the hillside overlooking
Matlock Bath. This photograph shows the memorial set against
the background of Masson hillside. The cable car going up
to the Heights of Abraham and part of Matlock Bath on the
other side of the valley can be seen.
on Starkholmes War Memorial.
There's an enlargement of the inscription, a list of
all the names of those who lost their lives and background
information about the Casualties of War. There's also
a photograph of the other side of the Memorial.
Photographs by Terry Moore: Matlock Memorial, Pic Tor | Matlock Bath
Photograph by Paul Kettle: Matlock Memorial, Hall Leys
Photograph from Bernard Gale Collection: Scouts in Matlock Dale
Postcard "Great War Memorial, Matlock Bath". The Doncaster
Rotophoto Co. Ltd, No.11. 84-32. Copyright-Toned Glossy Real Photograph.
Not posted. Ann Andrews collection. Replaces an earlier version.
Photograph by Ken Smith: Cleaning Matlock Bath's Memorial
Photographs by Charles Beresford, 2006: Scarthin
War Memorial | Starkholmes War Memorial
All images intended for personal use only and © the individual
Written and researched by and © Ann Andrews
 Inscription on Matlock
War Memorial, Pic Tor.
 "The High Peak News",
13 August, 1921, with thank to County Hall LSL for providing the
 "The High Peak News", 7
 Information from Charles
Beresford, who has been interested in Matlock Bath's memorial for
many years and has written a book, "The Bath at
 Derbyshire Courier 15 May
Courier", 11 September, 1920.
Courier", 29 November, 1919.