The memorials to the fallen in St Georges form an integral part of the uniqueness of this special church, be they the stained glass windows, kneelers, brass plaques, or the banners and standards. Each one conveys a story; an individual, lovingly errected by the family left behind, a mark of respect from an old school, or lasting legacy from a historic regiment. It is difficult to find a regiment NOT represented here and walking through the memorials offers a view into a past; names from a distant past that have been amalgamated into new units but evoke memories of that time as well as the dedicated men and women who served their country so gallantly.
So far this year St George’s Memorial church has placed five new school memorial plaques and two new individual memorial plaques. And more applications for new school memorial plaques are still being received. The brass memorial plaques are produced by the company Arte Grosse in Bruges and they cost 200 euros each. St George’s church now holds a grand total of 116 school memorial plaques.
Our latest school memorial plaques include:
(1) The Portsmouth Grammar School.
(2) Scarborough College.
(3) Airdrie Academy.
(4) The Royal Belfast Academical Institution.
(5) Kings Bruton School.
We are often asked the question: How can I commission a new school memorial plaque for St George’s church ?
Organisations must have served or have members who served in the Ypres Salient or the Somme in World War One.
The text of the inscription must be reverent and in keeping with the tradition of St George’s Memorial church.
The inscription must be approved by the Church Council.
Many school which have Rolls of Honour for their pupils who fell in the Great War in their school chapels also want to place a plaque here in Ypres where they are buried in the war cemeteries. The school plaques often display the school crest and the school motto. They often record the number of pupils who fell during the conflicts – sometimes a terribly high percentage of a single generation of young men. And they express a determination to honour and remember them. St George’s church regularly holds services of dedication and remembrance for visiting school groups who come to tour the battlefields of Ypres.
St George’s Memorial Church holds a unique collection of memorials including wall plaques, stained glass windows, regimental banners and standards, embroidered coloured kneelers and the new set of bells. There are over 400 brass memorial plaques which tell the stories of the military regiments, schools and individuals who served in the Great War. It was the intention of the founders of our church that we should provide an ongoing ministry of the remembrance of the fallen and pastoral care to their families. Many visitors come to St George’s church especially to see a particular plaque or memorial so that they can quietly reflect or say prayers, lay a wreath or take part in a special service of dedication or remembrance.
The chaplain Revd Gillian Trinder (email@example.com) is available upon request to meet with visitors, for guided group tours of the church and visits to the Ringing Chamber in the tower, for Services of Remembrance in the church and graveside memorial services in the war cemeteries and other special services by arrangement.
The Friends of St George's managed an ambitious project over a three year period where over 150 Regimental and Veterns Association badges were embroidered in many parts of the world and presented to the Church. These kneelers provide a microcosm of the rich Military History of this unique church.