Photo: Mark Stevenson

Mark’s History: Farsley Cenotaph, the village tank and the air raid shelter

10 November 2017

Farsley Cenotaph has the village’s community at its heart and a rich history, as MARK STEVENSON discovers in his latest Mark’s History column.

Made from Aberdeen granite and costing £1,000 – all of which was raised by public subscription – the Farsley War Memorial Cenotaph was unveiled on Saturday, June 25th, 1921 by Major Donald E Roberts M.C.

In 1920 the Government gifted hundreds of tanks to parts of the country in recognition of their fundraising during the War.

Farsley’s tank was placed on the site of the old mill pond which was close to where the Cenotaph would stand at the junction of Calverley Lane, Bagley Lane and Town Street in Farsley.

It stayed there until World War Two, and was then taken away for scrap towards the war effort.

Farsley Air Raid shelter is still visible to this day … Photo: Mark Stevenson

A public air raid shelter was built in its place when the tank was removed. Although sealed, it is still visible today.

Along with the names of the 91 men who died in World War I the names of the 34 men who died in World War Two from Farsley were added later.

Keep your eyes peeled on Farsley’s soldier on Christmas Eve… Photo: Mark Stevenson

Rumour has it that the soldier a top of the Cenotaph comes alive at midnight on Christmas Eve and walks up to the Parish Church and back again.

   

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Keith says:

Was there ever a field gun placed on the top of the air raid shelter at the Farsley cenotaph?
I seem to remember seeing one there in the late 40’s as a child. Or it may have been the tank?

Kath OSULLIVAN née Margerison says:

My uncle Frank Philips is remembered on the Farsley war memorial. He was just 20 in November 1914 when he and nearly 1200 Scots Guards went over the top. His friend told Granny that only 80 answered the roll that night.

We could not blame an unknown virus for those deaths. I am nearly 94. And now live in NZ, but I remember standing at the cenotaph as a young Girl Guide before the WW2 and being sad because I never got to meet him. Thank you for your article.