We are responsible for the care and maintenance of the War Memorial Gardens, Rowntree Park and four smaller memorials.

War Memorial Gardens, Leeman Road

Open in 1925, this is the city's principal memorial and hosts the annual Service of Remembrance in the presence of the Lord Mayor and other Civic dignitaries. The garden is open to the public all day every day for quiet contemplation and reflection. A memorial to those involved in the Korean War and a universal memorial to peace have been subsequently added.

Rowntree Park

Just south of the city centre is Rowntree Park. The park was a gift to the City of York by Messrs Rowntree & Co. in 1921 and is a memorial to the Cocoa Works staff who fell and suffered during World War 1. A set of listed gates off Terry Avenue were added to the park in memory of those who fell in the World War II. Bronze plaques mark both occasions within the centrally located lych-gate.

Other war memorials

Smaller war memorials exist at:

  • Duncombe Place - Boer War memorial
  • Skeldergate Island - Boer War memorial
  • Leeman Road - World Wars I and II
  • Acomb Green - World Wars I and II

See information about war memorials looked after by parish and town councils and local businesses, or find out about second world war airfield memorials.

Victoria Cross commemorative paving stones

As a way of marking the centenary of the First World War, commemorative paving stones are laid in the birth place of Victoria Cross recipients. The stones honour soldiers’ bravery and provide a lasting legacy of local heroes within communities. See a DCLG map of commemorative paving stone locations.

In York, the memorial stone on Mount Vale commemorates Lt.-Col. Best-Dunkley, who was awarded the Victoria Cross for his actions on the first day of the Battle of Passchendaele, at Wieltje, Belgium.

Conservation of war memorials

Many war memorials are of significant architectural, historic or artistic interest and have become key parts of the historic environment - find out about conservation of war memorials.


To report damage to war memorials please contact our customer centre.

For all queries contact our 'parks and open spaces' team.

Also see

Comment on this page