Tower Hill Memorials, London

In Cities, London, Mini Breaks, Our Journeys, Trip-Types, UK Travel by JanisLeave a Comment

“No grave but the sea”

This wonderful memorial in the heart of London commemorates both men and women of the Merchant Navy and Fishing Fleets, who died during both world wars and have no grave but the sea.

This memorial is often overlooked by visitors, as it is located just opposite the imposing Tower of London.

Overlooking Tower Hill Memorial Gardens towards the memorial colonnade to the fallen from World War One with the Tower of London in the background.
The tower from Trinity park
Hopefully you can take time out of your busy schedule and give this memorial the time that it deserves.

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The Great War

On the south side of Trinity Square Gardens stands the vaulted passageway, which commemorates almost 12,000 Mercantile Marines lives lost during World War I.
The corner of the World War I Memorial at Trinity Memorial Gardens on Tower Hill. The vaulted passageway has brass plaques attached to the stonework with the names of those lost at sea.
Close-up of the Great War Memorial
Standing inside the Tower Hill memorial arch looking out to the Church of all Hallows by the tower. The columns are filled with plaques of the names of the fallen from World War One.
Inside the Memorial

Every name is engraved upon the 12 bronze plaques, which you are free to respectfully stroll through and reflect.

The First World War memorial was unveiled by Queen Mary on 12th December 1928.

A total of 3,305 merchant ships were lost, along with 17,000 lives.

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Honor

Just beyond the World War I commemoration are two striking statues, one of an officer and the other of a seaman. These two wonderful figures guide you down into the sunken garden of the World War II memorial.
A black & white image of one of the stone Naval Officers at the Tower Hill Memorial in Trinity Memorial Gardens on Tower Hill
An Officer
Image
A Seaman

World War II

Stepping down into the semi-circular sunken garden, you’ll be astounded at the sea of names that engulf you. There are almost 24,000 British seamen named, along with 50 Australian seamen.
 
During the Second World War a total of 4,786 merchant ships were lost, along with 32,000 lives. More than one quarter of this total were lost in home waters.

A base relief of Neptune between the list of the fallen at the Tower Hill Memorial in Trinity Memorial Gardens on Tower Hill
Neptune at the Tower Hill Memorial
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A mermaid at the Tower Hill Memorial
This WWII memorial was unveiled by Queen Elizabeth II on 5th November 1955.
The Stone of Remembrance at the Tower Hill Memorial in Trinity Memorial Gardens on Tower Hill, London
No grave but the sea
In total 35,839 identified casualties are remembered here, which have “no grave but the sea”.

Trinity Square Gardens

Visitors panels are displayed around the garden, to give you further insight into the lives of these brave men and women.
A view across Trinity Memorial Gardens in London, with the tower of All Hallows by the Tower church and The Shard in the distance.
The view across Tower Hill Memorial and Trinity Gardens
As these memorials are set within a garden, you’ll often find escaped City workers whiling away their lunch break on the grass.

If you're in the area?

Why not check out our post - 'Sights to see near Tower Hill tube station, London' for more on the area.

10 Trinity Square

10 Trinity Square which was once the headquarters of the Port of London Authority, stands proud overlooking these memorials, towards the River Thames.
(Some of you may recognize it from the James Bond film ‘Skyfall’)

The Sundial at the Tower Hill Underground Station, in front of number 10 Trinity Square, London

The Sundial at Tower Hill Gardens

Trinity House at dusk, a neo-classical building close to Tower Hill in London
Outside 10 Trinity Square at dusk

A 14th Century Scaffold Site

Within Trinity Square Gardens also lies a memorial to the Scaffold site once used for public executions, dating from 1381 to 1747. Many of whom were dignitaries and clergymen.

One of the plaques which lies in the memorial garden reads;

"To commemorate the tragic history and in many cases the martyrdom of those who for the sake of their faith, country or ideals staked their lives and lost" "On this site more than 125 were put to death, the names of some of whom are recorded here"
A small cobbled square in Trinity Park with a brass plaque noting this was the spot of an ancient Scaffold used for executions.
Site of the gallows in Trinity park

Have You?

Wandered through this park? Enjoyed a picnic on the green? Or have you visited the Tower of London and missed the chance to visit the memorials without knowing they existed?

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Inspired to visit the Tower Hill memorials?

It's easy to get to.  It's nearest tube is Tower Hill, or if you're coming from the east via the DLR then Tower Gateway,

Or if you're coming via overland train then Fenchurch Street, London Bridge or even Liverpool Steet are all within walking distance.

Have a peek at the latest offers from Booking.com, our preferred hotel booking website.
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