ILKLEY'S war memorial is among hundreds to be listed over the last year through Historic England’s pledge to protect 2,500 memorials by 2018, marking the centenary of the First World War.

Built by communities in the years following the conflict, these memorials are a poignant, physical reminder of the sacrifices and loss the First World War brought about. One hundred years on, the aim is to ensure the memorials are in good condition, and properly recognised by listing where appropriate.

Ilkley Memorial Gardens, at the west end of The Grove, Ilkley, has received Grade II listed status for its historic interest, its designer, its degree of survival and its group value. The listing includes the gardens, the First World War memorial, the Second World War memorial and associated pavilion shelters, gate piers, gates, railings and steps.

Designed by the London architect John James Joass, the memorial was unveiled on July 23, 1922 by Colonel J H Hastings and Captain Thomas Harold Broadbent Maufe VC. In the early 1950s a Second World War memorial was installed in the gardens, in the form of a triumphal arch-style shrine and two pavilion shelters.

Lord Ashton of Hyde, First World War Minister said: "As we enter the final year of our First World War centenary commemorations, we want to ensure the bravery and sacrifice of those who served are never forgotten.

"Local war memorials are a poignant reminder of how the war affected our communities and of those who never came home. I encourage everyone to visit their local memorial and to learn more about their connection to this pivotal point in our history."

Duncan Wilson, chief executive at Historic England, added: “Researching, recording and recommending up to 2,500 more war memorials for listing is a major task but one that Historic England is proud to undertake. These memorials will gain a place on the National Heritage List for England to tell the story of this country’s sacrifice and struggle.”

Historic England has pledged to list a total of 2,500 war memorials over the centenary of the First World War. To do this the public is asked to put their war memorials forward for listing.

It is part of a wider partnership Historic England has forged with the War Memorials Trust, Civic Voice and the Imperial War Museums to help communities discover, care for and conserve their local war memorials.

The programme is providing up to £2million in grants for war memorial repair and conservation and hundreds of workshops to teach people how to record their memorials and put them forward for listing.