The History

Originally an isolated fishery settlement in pre- Norman times the village of Areley Kings is now included within the boundaries of the town of Stourport on Severn but for many centuries it was a separate community based largely on agriculture. A notable period in its history was the way the village responded to the Great War when not only over 100 of the local men went to fight but there was also great suport to the war effort at home.

An Auxiliary Hospital, staffed by local people, was established which cared for 448 wounded servicemen between 1914 and 1918, refugees were taken in and suported, women went to work on the land whilst others contributed by making clothing and comforts for the troops. Like all communities the village played its part in the War and this merits being set down as a permanent record.

Timeline of events

The growing international crisis had little impact on Arley Kings until the official declaration of war and the inspiring sermon of the local Rector. The following years were punctuated by reports of casualties from the various theatres of action as shown below. The building of the War Memorial was a tangible conclusion to 4 years of distress and enabled the community to go forward with due deference to what it had lost.
  • 28th June 1914

    Assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo. Little significance in Areley Kings.

  • 4th August 1914

    Great Britain declares war on Germany.

  • 9th August 1914

    Rector of Areley Kings preaches inspiring, patriotic sermon.

  • 20th August 1914

    First volunteers from the village.

  • 24th October 1914

    Opening of Red Cross Hospital
  • 19th June 1915

    First death of a man from the village Private John Henry Calder in the Gallipoli campaign.

  • 27th June 1915

    Death of Private Charles Corbett - Krithia Gallipoli.

  • 23rd April 1916

    Death of Trooper Claude Shaddock - Qatia Oasis Egypt.

  • June 1916

    Death of Private Leonard Evans - Downs Sanitorium Surrey.

  • 10th July 1916

    Death of Rifleman Joseph Mapp - Battle of the Somme

  • 24th August 1916

    Death of Rifleman Reginald Speake – Battle of the Somme

  • 9th April 1917

    Death of Private Alfred Corbett - Vimy Ridge Battle of Arras

  • 15th May 1917

    Death of Leading Stoker Charles Mills – Battle of Otranto Barrage

  • 28th May 1917

    Death of Private Harry Elcox – Railway Dugouts Zillebeke

  • 7th August 1917

    Death of Gunner John Rogers - Passchendaele

  • 10th October 1917

    Death of Private Joseph Higgs – 3rd Battle of Ypres

  • October 1917

    Death of Private Frederick Mapp from disease in Mesopotamia

  • 3rd September 1918

    Death of Corporal Stephen King Mapp from wounds at Neuve Chapelle

  • 3rd September 1918

    Death of Private William White – 2nd Battle of the Somme

  • 26th August 1918

    Death of Sergeant Vincent Bowen – Arras

  • 11th November 1918

    Cease fire announced – celebration peal of church bells

  • 3rd February 1919

    Decision to create a permanent memorial to the fallen

  • 28th June 1919

    Signing of Official Peace Treaty and Grand Parade in celebration

  • July 1919

    Men’s Peace Dinner in Dunley

  • 19th July 1919

    Grand Peace Celebration, Parade & Dinner
  • 25th July 1919

    Ladies Peace Tea at the Rectory

  • 25th September 1920

    Dedication of Pillar of Remembrance

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