About the memorial

In St Mary's Church, on Horse Fair, Banbury, there is a memorial listing the names of the town's men who died in the Second World War. This memorial consists of three panels: one central panel containing 78 names, which dates from just after the war, and two further panels to the left and right which were added in 2003.

Mr. Harry Cowie, war veteran and vice president of the Banbury branch of the Royal British Legion, spent years researching other names which should have been on the original memorial, but were not. Thanks to his work, the two further panels with an additional 34 and 22 names were added to the left and right of the original memorial.

This website lists all of the names on all three panels. It contains all the information we have about each of the men. We have also done independent research as described below, and taken photographs of graves where possible.

The men listed on the memorial include the following:

  • 66 who were in the Army (including 14 from the Oxford & Bucks Light Infantry and 15 from Anti-tank regiments)
  • 38 who were in the RAF (including the Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve)
  • 9 who were in the Royal and Merchant Navy
  • 4 who were in the Royal Engineers
  • 3 who were in the Royal Marines
  • 3 who were civilians
  • 2 who were in the Military Police
  • 2 who were in the Reconnaissance Corps
  • 1 who was in the Life Guards and
  • 1 who was in the Royal Australian Air Force

The youngest man on the memorial was 17 (Stuart John Quare Williams, a Cadet in the Merchant Navy) and the oldest was 61 (Richard Walter Parker, civilian).

The earliest date of death is 20/12/1939 (Donald Cranston Selby, killed at a railway crossing) and the latest is 17/10/1956 (Michael O'Carroll, accidentally shot while on guard duty in Cyprus).

To date, 3 men remain unidentified (A R Harrison, E Taylor and S Booth).

About this site

These pages are dedicated to the men of Banbury who gave their lives in the Second World War. Their names and details are listed on the Memorial page, and there is further information about our town during the war on the Wartime Banbury page.

We have tried to identify all of the men listed on the Memorial, which is located in St Mary's Church on Horsefair. To do this, we have used websites such as the Commonwealth War Graves Commission and FreeBMD, as well as information from documents and news clippings held by Banbury Library. We have been as careful as we can with our research, but if we have made any mistakes, we hope you will let us know so we can correct them.

Hundreds of men from the Banbury area fought in the war; in the British Army, the Royal and Merchant Navies and in the Royal Air Force. Some were sent to Europe, to North Africa, the Middle East and the Far East, while others stayed in England and worked in support services, in essential jobs and in the Home Guard. This site is dedicated to them all, but in particular to the men who made the ultimate sacrifice so that future generations could live in freedom.

It is important to us that these men are remembered, and do not become just names on a list.