The Twentieth Century Society

War Memorials

France: British Memorial to the Missing, Soissons

Architect: Gordon Herbert Holt & Verner Owen Rees
Location: Rue Charpentier, Soissons

The British Memorial to the Missing in Soissons was erected by the Imperial War Graves Commission and unveiled in 1928. It commemorates 3,987 British soldiers who fought alongside the French in this area in July and August 1918 and who have no known grave. The architects of this rather unsubtle monument were Gordon Herbert Holt & Verner Owen Rees, who had won a limited competition for it in 1925; the curiously stiff figures of three soldiers were by Eric Kennington. It does not compare well either with the other Memorials to the Missing, nor with the large sculptural monuments erected by the French.

Gavin Stamp