Christchurch Dedication of War Memorials
Christchurch Dedication of War Memorials- Folkestone Herald 24th January 1920.
On Wednesday Afternoon last, a large congregation including the Mayor and Mayoress (Mr and Mrs R.G.Wood), family, friends and parishioners assembled at the Church to dedicate the war memorial and also a tablet to Denis Arthur Hewitt Lawrence. There were four clergymen present Vicar of Folkestone (Canon P.F.Tindall), the Vicar (the Rev. L.G.Grey), the Vicar of St. John’s (the Rev.A.E.Low) and the Rev H.T.Coggin. The service began with the clergy, choir and cadets processing into the Church to the hymn “praise my soul, the king of heaven. The Archdeacon of Canterbury was to give the address but unfortunately was ill so this was undertaken by Canon Tindall. He told the congregation that “they must let their minds go back to those days of the war. When they in this town saw more of what was going on than probably any other place in England. Day after day they saw those men march down the Leas und slope-road with strength determination on their faces, going out to fight for freedom and truth and honour. They taught all the lesson of service and sacrifice and that must be their own motto in the future. A Christian who was not working for his God and others was not Worthy of the name. He believed that they in Folkestone would realise a new hope and go forward unitedly to fight against indifference and sin”
After the address the Clergy, Churchwardens and officers of the R.N.V.R Sea Scout movement processed tot eh Chancel Arch where a member of the Christchurch Sea Scout unveiled the first memorial. The memorial’s inscription read ‘Fight the good fight. To the glory of God, and in memory of Denis Arthur Hewitt Lawrence, Commander Sea Cadet Company, C.L.B. in this Parish. Founder of the R.N.V.R. Sea Cadet movement. My Strength is made perfect in weakness.
Then Cynthia Streatfeild, (sister of Thomas Basil Streatfeild) unveiled the tablet in the North Aisle. The tablet was then dedicated with the following words. “To the Glory of God and in memory of those who gave their lives to win the Great War, we dedicate this memorial tablet in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost.” The congregation sang the hymn “The Supreme Sacrifice” and then a blessing was given. The” Last Post” was played by the buglers and drummers of the 2nd Depot Batt. Machine Gun Corps. The lights had been lowered whilst this was done and “the effect was thrilling, especially as the final sound by a bugler in the distance was sounded.” After the lights had been turned on the “The Reverie” was sounded and the service was closed after the newly presented colours had been dedicated. These were the Union Jack and the Company colours which were presented to the Sea Cadets in a ceremony just prior to the service in Christchurch.
This memorial was salvaged and removed to Holy Trinity Church, Sandgate Road, Folkestone after Christ Church suffered a direct hit by a German bomb on 17th May 1942, destroying all but the tower.