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Richmond Cenotaph

6911 No. 3 Road, Richmond, British Columbia, V6Y, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2003/05/26

View of the Richmond Cenotaph outside City Hall,  2001; Denise Cook Design 2004
view from the northwest
View of the Richmond Cenotaph with wreath showing part of Municipal Hall behind, c.1945; Richmond Archives No. 1977 218
view to the southwest
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Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/03/03

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The historic place consists of the Richmond Cenotaph, a three metre high granite monument situated outside Richmond City Hall, and its concrete supporting base.

Heritage Value

The heritage value of the Cenotaph lies in its community expression as a non-denominational monument built by community consensus and effort to represent popular feeling following World War I, as well as for its superior craftsmanship and the use of fine materials in its carved granite crown and die.

Designed by noted Vancouver architects Sharp and Thompson, the Cenotaph was the result of a Memorial Committee struck in 1921 to erect a memorial to 'our fallen comrades of Richmond'. The Cenotaph was sited on a direct north-south axis with the entry to Richmond's first Town Hall and has maintained this orientation through the construction of two subsequent Town and City Halls. Similar to many crosses erected across the country, the Celtic Cross is a representative design giving the Cenotaphs a connection to other places in Canada and to members of the community and all victims of war. Use of the finest materials ensured that the Cenotaph would be an elegant and lasting memorial to Richmond's war veterans.

Source: City of Richmond Clerk's Department File #4200-02.

Character-Defining Elements

Character defining elements of the Richmond Cenotaph include:
- The design of the Cenotaph, including the tapered square carved granite column, the elegant and serene Celtic Cross design with its elaborate carving, the concrete foundation and the four boulders which has remained unchanged since its construction
- The more than 50 names of the war dead from World War I, World War II and the Korean War carved on three sides of the column
- The four boulders carved with the names of battles - Vimy, Somme, Ypres, Amiens, a unique design feature that provokes a powerful imagery
- The sense of roughness created by the contrast of the formal cross with the granite boulders at each corner
- The location of the Cenotaph at the front of City Hall and the continuation of the historic relationship to the civic centre of Richmond



British Columbia

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (BC)

Recognition Statute

Local Government Act, s.954

Recognition Type

Community Heritage Register

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Governing Canada
Military and Defence

Function - Category and Type



Commemorative Monument

Architect / Designer

Sharp and Thompson



Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

City of Richmond Clerk's Department File #4200-02. See also: City of Richmond Archives.

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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