This news article from 3 June however, prompted the local vicar to point out that the brass tablet was not the official War Memorial.
The nowy headed brass plaque bearing a cross within a wreath carried the inscription.
Although the original newspaper article mentioned that this plaque carried the names of 43 men it was in fact only 41 as Rev. Bampfield clarified in his reply. However, the names of George Hattrick, who died on 2 December 1919, Edwin Joseph Penwill who died on 16 December 1919 and J. Symons (unknown) were included on the Ivybridge War Memorial which was erected later, bringing the total number of men who paid the ultimate sacrifice to 44.
It is a description which usually indicates a projection, usually curved, which exists in the middle of the top edge of the plaque.
The Comrades of the Great War was formed in 1917 as a non-political association endeavouring to represent the rights of ex-service men and women who had served or had been discharged from service during The Great War.
Locally the Comrades of the Great War were formed by Lieut-Col. E.H. Orlebar and Mr J.W. Gard in 1918. Mr Gard had established what is believed to be one of the first branches of the ex-service movement, the Discharged Sailors’ and Soldiers’ Association only a year earlier before affiliation to the Comrades of the Great War movement.
The Comrades of The Great War was one of the original four ex-service associations, the National Association of Discharged Sailors and Soldiers, the National Federation of Discharged and Demobilized Sailors and Soldiers and the Officers’ Association that amalgamated to form The British Legion on Sunday 15 May 1921.
In July 1921 the Ivybridge British Legionites were formally elected. Lieut-Col. E.H. Orlebar (President). Rev. J. McWilliams Bampfield (Vice President), Com. C. Davey, R.N., Capt. H.G. Hawker, Com. Sparrow, R.N., Capt. Parker, Capt. J. Matthews, Col. E. Condon, Capt. R. Clapperton, Lieut. Miles and Lieut. Weekes. The chairman was Capt. W. A. Trumper and Vice Chairman, Mr. W. Brownfield Craig with Mr. T.H. Bowcott Hon Treasurer and Mr J.W. Gard Hon Secretary. The organisation used the White House in Ivybridge as a meeting place.
Lord Mildmay of Flete, President of the local branch commented that
A few years later in 1925 Ivybridge formed a branch of the Women’s Section of the British Legion with Miss Young, who had served during the war as an officer of the Women’s Auxiliary Army Corps, was appointed Hon. Secretary. It was recorded that around 30 women joined the new branch.
Col. H. Browse Scaife – vice-president of the Plymouth branch of the British Legion – 1926.
By 1927 the Ivybridge branch of the British Legion had a membership of 220 and ‘they had got almost every ex-service man who lived at Ivybridge in the branch, and they also had members at Ermington, Modbury, Cornwood, Sparkwell, and other small places…discharged over £1,682 in relief, averaging £35 a month, which was very creditable for a small branch.’
War memorials stand at the heart of almost every community in the UK and it is estimated that there are more than 70,000 throughout the country. The scale of the losses suffered during the Great War and the unknown or uncertain fate of so many soldiers, left loved ones at home bereft. Memorials therefore provided both a collective tribute to the fallen and a place for relatives to remember individuals who did not return.
On Sunday 24th September 1922, Lieut.-Col. Francis Bingham Mildmay, Lord Mildmay of Flete and Conservative Member of Parliament for Totnes, addressed a large gathering at a special unveiling ceremony of the war memorial.
Lieut-Col. Francis Mildmay paid tribute
The memorial was formally handed over to the village of Ivybridge by Mr. E.W. Hawker on behalf of the Memorial Committee, and accepted by Mr. H.J.F. Lee, chairman of the Urban Council.
The memorial included a 17ft high Latin cross constructed of Cornish granite, the pedestal inscribed with the words ‘In honour of the men of Ivybridge who made the supreme sacrifice in the Great War, 1914-18’ and flanked on both sides by two panels bearing the names of the men and two further pillars matching those of the bridge. The work had been carried out by a local monument mason, Mr. G.B. Andrews.
The service was conducted by the vicar Col. Rev. M.S.C. Campbell. It was reported that ‘practically the whole of the inhabitants attended the ceremony, including the Ivybridge detachment of the 5th (P.O.W.) Devon Regt., the Ivybridge branch of the British Legion and the Ivybridge Girl Guides’.
Along with wreaths from these organisations a ‘beautiful tribute’ from Ivybridge was placed at the foot of the memorial.
was the vicar in Ivybridge from 1922 until 1946. A military man himself, he was awarded the Albert Medal for gallantry. He joined the church in 1919 and became a deacon followed by a priest in 1920. During his time in Ivybridge he used his army training to draw a series of maps of the village showing all the dwellings in his parish and the people who lived there.