Winston Churchill Cemetery Headstone

Sir Winston’s grave headstone as it was.
It is the 3rd on the right in the front row this photograph.
Note how its tablet slopes forward.
The original master mason, Mr Stanley Maxwell Moffatt, knew what he was about.
He made it like this for two purposes
(a) to prevent the accumulation of dirt in the lettering
and to allow the rain to drain off the tablet and so protect it from frost damage and,

(b) to enable light and shade to accentuate the V incised lettering.

The master mason was only responsible for the tablet –
not the border paving stones,
but you can see he had a perfect sense of proportion –
something that cannot be taught.
Note how knowledgeable he was about mouldings
and how he was a master of lettering

The correct lettering is

For over 3,000 years men have carved in stone
and experience has proved which are the best styles in lettering.

This tablet exposes woeful ignorance of the art of lettering.

Moreover the designer has obviously heard of entasis but does not understand its purpose.

The tablet’s exaggerated entasis is vulgar,
it should be hardly visible but nonetheless correct to eliminate optical illusions

The tablet is brutal.
It looks as if it has been made behind the Iron Curtain.

Nor has the stone mason any appreciation of mouldings –
but then few have any knowledge of them today.
The sum of £350,000 (plus) was alleged to have been spent on this refurbishment. It has not been spent as the public were led to believe it was to be spent, for little of it was spent on Sir Winston’s grave.

It has been spent upon the entire Churchill family burial plot which has 14 people interred in it to date. The work included preparing many (unoccupied and future) family graves.

A large part of the money was spent on a new graveyard footpath.

This money was public money – being a fraction of the very first payout from the National Lottery, snatched by the family after they threatened to sell at public auction the Churchill Archive Papers. Archives which the nation understood Sir Winston and Lady Churchill had given in perpetuity to Churchill College Cambridge.

The rich always make the poor pay for their privileges.

Churchill’s grave is nearest to the footpath (top of photograph) it faces the public. For some strange reason all the other headstones face away from the public. This requires the public to walk upon the grass around the plot to read the text upon the headstones – thus defeating the whole purpose of the project. Among others buried in the family plot are:- (this picture is taken from what is in fact the front of the plot) Not in view….Christopher Soames (son in law), Sarah (daughter), Diana (daughter).

Middle Row. Centre to Right. John Strange (Brother) Jennie (Mother) The Large Cross. – Lord Randolph (Father) (out of view on right of middle row) Randolph (Son), and among those buried in the front row (back row in the picture) are Sir Winston and Lady Clementine Churchill and (left) Ivor Charles (cousin).

There are a number of other family graves in the plot which have also been included in the work.

It would have been sensible to have had a small engraved plaque stating the names of all those persons interred in the plot.

42 comments on “Winston Churchill Cemetery Headstone

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