Situated to the North of Carlisle City centre is Rickerby Park, purchased shortly after World War I as a memorial to the fallen.
Rickerby Park, which runs alongside the River Eden, once formed part of the 18th Century Rickerby Estate which was broken up and sold off in 1914.
In 1920 The Citizens League purchased the area for £11,500 and in a joint scheme with the Corporation (City Council), Rickerby Park was dedicated as a memorial to the fallen of the Great War of 1914-1918.
A memorial suspension bridge from St Aidans Road was erected along with the cenotaph and on the 25th May 1922, Rickerby Park was formally opened and handed over to the City of Carlisle for the benefit of the public.
The Citizens League was founded in the first week of the Great War (1914-1918) by the Acting Mayor, Sir Benjamin Scott, with many ex-servicemen amongst its membership.
The Citizen’s League dedicated its time to helping other ex-servicemen, and founded the Lonsdale Battalion which looked after soldiers and sailors passing through Carlisle during the war years.
The war memorial cenotaph is situated in the centre of the park and was originally dedicated to the fallen of World War I.
An imposing but simple structure, the memorial bears the following WWI inscription which reads:
“To the immortal memory of the men and women of Cumberland and Westmorland who gave their lives during the Great War and in honour of the glorious services of Border Regiment, Westmorland and Cumberland Yeomanry, Cumberland Brigade Royal Field Artillery and The Westmorland Detachment R.A.M.C”.
The memorial has been later served by the addition of a plaque “commemorating those who gave their lives in World War II (1939-1945) and subsequent conflicts”.
As Rickerby Park is situated on the outskirts of the city, a more recent memorial was erected in Carlisle City centre, dedicated by the Duke of Gloucester in 1990. This offered a much shorter walk from the remembrance services at the Cathedral and allowed many more people to attend.
Cenotaph location – Geograph.org.uk.
History of Rickerby Park – Carlisle City Council.
Border Regiment and King’s Own Border Regiment Museum
The Royal Army Medical Corps of WWI
The Hadrian’s Wall National Trail runs through Rickerby Park