Finchley War Memorial Dedication

(l) Dedication ceremony before the unveiling
(r) The Bishop of London consecrating memorial

A short while ago the Media Team reported on the new Finchley War Memorial, which has now been unveiled and forms a fitting tribute to the fallen – Forget Me Not – Remembering the fallen of Finchley W Bro Paul Huggins PSGD PAPGM who has been actively involved in this initiative has provided the following report.

On Sunday 26th September a Ceremony took place at the new Finchley War Memorial to dedicate the brand-new edifice. Finchley had missed out on a public war memorial after the First War.

War memorials had been erected in virtually every other London district.

In Finchley it was decided to dedicate a memorial hospital instead.

The Province of Middlesex has donated £12,500 towards the £105,000 cost of the memorial; £7,500 from Middlesex Masonic Charity (MMC), and £5,000 from the Middlesex Province Relief Fund (MPRF).

As major donors the names of these charities have been acknowledged on a plaque on the memorial.

It is a stunning new memorial erected in the grounds of Finchley Memorial Hospital, with all these missing names engraved in gold leaf on dark grey polished granite.

The memorial commemorates by name the 1307 men and women from Finchley and Whetstone killed on active service in the two World Wars. This project has taken over six years to come to fruition.

(l) Dignataries at dedication service – Rt Hon Theresa Villiers MP on right
(r) Representatives in front of Finchley Memorial Hospital including MPRF & MMC

The memorial was unveiled by General Sir Adrian Bradshaw KCB OBE DL, Governor of the Royal Hospital Chelsea, who was accompanied by several scarlet-coated In-pensioners.

The consecration ceremony that followed the unveiling was led by the Bishop of London, The Rt Revd and Rt Hon Dame Sarah Mullaly DBE.

There were about 200 people present at the ceremony, including three representatives from the MPRF i.e., W Bro Dr Robert Bethel (Chairman), W Bro Howard Walters (Treasurer) and Mrs Patricia James, and W Bro Paul Huggins representing the MMC.

W Bro Paul also sits on the Barnet War Memorials Association Committee who sponsored the project.

There were many dignitaries present, including the two local MPs, the Mayor of Barnet, Councillors, Deputy Lieutenants, and representatives from other faiths, St John Ambulance, Police, Ambulance and Fire Services.

Ten Standard Bearers represented a wide range of ex-service organisations in the Borough and beyond.

Also present was the driving force behind the creation of the memorial, Catherine Loveday, whose father died in action at sea during WW2.

Catherine wondered why her father’s name, along with other Finchley war dead, did not appear on any local public war memorial, and determined that the situation should be remedied.

With the assistance of Mick Crick, she painstakingly researched the missing names from numerous sources.

The Masonic Province of Middlesex is proud to have made this significant contribution to commemorate a large number of Finchley residents, who had given their lives in the two World Wars, and for 75 years have had no grave or memorial where their families can pay their respects.

All images are provided by courtesy of Simon O’Connor and Gerald Alterman and are Copyright of the Barnet War Memorials Association.

To view more images see

(l) Standard Bearers after the Exhortation
(r) Donor plaque on the memorial

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