The stories behind Ely’s two war memorials


Throughout Ely and the surrounding villages you will find various war memorials, from the familiar landmark of the Ely Market Place memorial, to the ones on village greens, or inside various churches, village halls, and the Cathedral.


The Market Place memorial, unveiled in 1922, originally listed the names of those, put forward by their families, that were connected to Ely who had died as a result of military service in the First World War. Later, following the Second World War, a second series of bronze panels were added bearing the names of those who died in that conflict.


Also unveiled in 1922, one month after the Market Place memorial, Ely Cathedral is home to the memorial for the county of Cambridgeshire. This memorial lists the names of most of those from across the county that died as a result of the First World War. The Chapel is also home to several Rolls of Honour, specifically for the Cambridgeshire Regiment and Royal Anglian Regiment.


Currently on display at Ely Museum, until November 27th, is “A Pause to Reflect”, an exhibition that explores the stories behind these two memorials and how they came to be. The exhibition also features large photographs of the unveiling services as well as objects and stories relating to some of those recorded on the memorials.


On Saturday, November 5th, Ely Museum is also holding a Military Family History Research Day, where visitors will be able to bring in objects to discover more about them and ask our team of military history experts questions relating to their ancestors’ military history.  The event is included with a standard entry ticket or an annual pass.