The memorial to the those from the Fartown and Birkby district who died in the First World War was erected in Norman Park in 1921 at a cost of £1,370.
Comprising a "life-size figure in bronze of an infantry solider in full fighting kit on an unpolished granite pedestal, with panels of bronze bearing the names of the men who have fallen", it was unveiled on Saturday 2 April 1921 by Sir Ian Hamilton.
In recent years, the war memorial was vandalised in 2004 and 2009.
Courtesy of Kirklees Museums & Galleries.
has been erected by
public subscription in
memory of the Men
from the Fartown and
Birkby districts who
gave their lives for
their country in
the Great War
For God and King and home
they gave their all
A war memorial was first proposed for Fartown and Birkby ward in August 1917 before the end of the First World War and a committee was established to decide on the form and location of the memorial. The memorial was funded by public subscriptions in the two districts, which raised £1,370. It was constructed in 1921 and produced by Hart, Son, Peard and Co Ltd of London and Birmingham.
The memorial was unveiled by General Sir Ian Hamilton GCB GCMG MGDSO on 2 April 1921 who was accompanied by the Mayor of Huddersfield, Alderman J A Wolven and other dignitaries. A guard of honour was provided by the 5th Battalion Duke of Wellington's Regiment. An additional plaque commemorating those who lost their lives during the Second World War and in all subsequent conflicts was added later. The war memorial was re-dedicated in 2005.
After a number of thefts the memorial's surviving bronze plaques were removed in 2008 and all the plaques replaced in polished granite.
The memorial is located on an area of higher ground on the eastern side of Norman Park on a tarmacked plateau at the top of a flight of stone and tarmac steps; its elevated position overlooking the park.
MATERIALS: granite with bronze statue and polished-granite plaques.
DESCRIPTION: Fartown and Birkby War Memorial consists of a tall granite pedestal with a tapering shaft with panelled sides and topped by a cornice, surmounted by a life-size bronze figure of an infantry soldier in full fighting kit standing at ease with his hands placed on top of an upright rifle resting on the ground. The whole is set upon a two-stepped platform of the same granite.
Each of the pedestal's four panelled sides originally had bronze plaques bearing a dedication and the names of the 242 men of the district killed during the First World War. These have since been replaced with modern plaques of black polished granite. The panel on the front (south-west) face has a carved wreath to the top and an inscription that reads: 'THIS MONUMENT / HAS BEEN ERECTED BY / PUBLIC SUBSCRIPTION IN / MEMORY OF THE MEN / FROM THE FARTOWN AND / BIRKBY DISTRICTS WHO / GAVE THEIR LIVES FOR / THEIR COUNTRY IN / THE GREAT WAR / 1914 – 1918 / FOR GOD AND KING AND HOME / THEY GAVE THEIR ALL'. Below this on the base of the pedestal is a smaller plaque with an inscription that reads: 'THIS MEMORIAL WAS UNVEILED BY / GENERAL SIR IAN HAMILTON G.C.B. G.C.M.G. M.G.D.S.O. / ON SATURDAY APRIL 2nd 1921'. Underneath is a smaller plaque with an inscription that reads: 'IN MEMORY OF ALL / THOSE WHO GAVE THEIR / LIVES DURING THE / SECOND WORLD WAR / AND ALL SUBSEQUENT / CONFLICTS', which was added at a later date. The remaining sides of the pedestal have plaques bearing the names of those killed, including an additional smaller plaque at the base of the rear (north-east) face.