Driver and Wipers Memorial

Driver and Wipers memorial, public art, Melbourne, Charles Sargeant Jagger

Public Art : Driver and Wipers Memorial

Sculptor: © Charles Sargeant Jagger

Description: This memorial combines two separate sculptures by the late sculptor Charles Jagger (who had also fought in Gallipoli).  The Driver bronze is a copy from the 1925, Royal Artillary Memorial that resides in Hyde Park Corner, London and the Wipers a copy from Jagger's 1922 Hoylake War Memorial in Cheshire.

The Driver bronze is a truly haunting piece, capturing the pure horrors of war with arms outstretched and right foot slightly forward as though in a crucifiction pose. The driver's role in war was to control a team of horses that pulled the wagon of artillary. In his right hand is a bridle and whip. On his legs are spurs and on his right a protective legging. This legging was necessary as the driver always rode on the left hand pair of horses and it protected his lower leg from the other horse and the tow bar of the wagon. Covering his uniform is a cloak which loosely hangs over his shoulders. His chiselled face peers out from under his helmet.

Wipers was the name that British soldiers called the French town of Ypres, thinking it was the correct way to pronounce it. The town remained etched in many soldiers memories as it was close to where many fought and died in horrific conditions during World War I. The bronze depicts a British infantry soldier standing guard clutching his .303 rifle and bayonet. In winter uniform he wears a gas mask around his neck and bullet damaged helmet is slung behind his head. At his feet is a German helmet. The expression on his face is one of sheer resolve.

Date Unveiled: Unveiled on the 24th of February, 1937

Funded by : The two bronze copies were purchased by the Felton Bequest at £1,500 each.

Location : The Drivers and Wipers Memorial was originally located outside the State Library of Victoria but was moved in 1998 to Kings Domain, South Yarra, Melbourne.

Driver and Wipers memorial, public art, Melbourne, Charles Jagger

Driver and Wipers memorial, public art, Melbourne, Charles Jagger

Driver and Wipers memorial, public art, Melbourne, Charles Jagger

Driver and Wipers memorial, public art, Melbourne, Charles Jagger

Driver and Wipers memorial, public art, Melbourne, Charles Jagger

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