Researching the names on the war memorial
St James Church in Taunton has been a place of Christian worship for centuries, fragments of the building date back to the 12th Century, and the building has changed and adapted with the fortunes of the town throughout its existence. As the town grew in the 19th Century so the church expanded, and along with other churches in the town played a central part in community life. With the outbreak of war in 1914, many young men in Taunton answered the call to join up, and through the following four years of The Great War no part of life in the town was left untouched. Of those who did not return from the war, 102 are named on the war memorial in the church’s side chapel.
To mark one hundred years since the start of the war a group of volunteers from St James church researched the stories behind these names – who were they, what they did before the war, where did they serve, how were they connected to the church, when did they die, who did they leave behind, and so much more.
All these men had families and a future which never happened, and through this project we aim to remember them and the sacrifices that they made.
“To the glory of God and in ever grateful memory of the men of this parish who gave their lives in the Great War 1914-1918”
To mark the 100th anniversary of the war, St James Church with St James Church School held a special concert on 30th May 2015, with proceeds being donated to the Royal British Legion.
For more information about Somerset and the Great War, including 100th Anniversary commemoration events, please visit the Somerset Remembers website.
As well as researching the individual stories of the men listed on the church war memorial, we have discovered some general information relating to the church and the Great War: