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The Dover War Memorial, erected on what was the front lawn of Maison Dieu House , depicts a bronze figure of Youth, feet encircled by thorns, hands upstretched to grasp a fiery cross.

The figure of Youth is symbolic of self-sacrifice and devotion. His hand grasping the cross enveloped in flame suggests triumph of the spirit over bodily suffering. The thorns at his feet represent the difficulties in the path of life overcome.

The memorial was the work of Reginald R. Goulden who was born in Dover in 1877. Educated at Dover College, he went to the Dover School of Art, where he won a scholarship to the Royal College of Art in London.

During the First World War he was in the front line in France in 1915 and 1916, and was mentioned in dispatches.

 

 

Image:  A view of the Memorial in the 1930s.
A view of the Memorial in the 1930s.

He specialised in statues, memorial fountains, busts and panels, and after the war he designed and executed many war memorials all over Britain, including that of the Bank of England, and the Middlesex memorial in the Guildhall. He surveyed, laid out and designed the surrounds and pedestals of all his works.

This memorial to the people of Dover who had died in the First World War, was unveiled on 5 November 1924 by Vice-Admiral Sir Roger Keyes. After the Second World War new inscriptions were added and it was re-dedicated to the dead of both World Wars.

To coincide with Remembrance Day 2006 Dover Town Council published a booklet detailing the stories of some of the servicemen's name that appear on the memorial. Take a look at the Dover War Memorial Project website, which has the information from the booklet. It also has much more too about the casualties, the memorial, and includes some memories of war-time Dover.

 

"They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them".

 

These very famous words are just a part of a poem by Laurence Binyon that he called The Fallen. It was first published in the Times newspaper on 21st. September 1914.

 


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