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Wilfred Owen’s home given special status

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Heritage Minister Ed Vaizey lists the Shrewsbury home of war poet Wilfred Owen as government continues to commemorate the First World War Centenary

The last permanent home of celebrated First World War poet Lieutenant Wilfred Owen MC has been listed Grade II today by Heritage Minister Ed Vaizey.

Sixty-nine Monkmoor Road, Shrewsbury, is the house where he began to develop as a poet. Owen spent two days leave at the house before returning to the battlefields in France where he was killed in action on 4 November 1918, just days before the end of the war. His parents received news of his death at Monkmoor Road.

Commenting on the listing, Heritage Minister Ed Vaizey said:

Wilfred Owen was one of the most profound and distinct voices of the First World War. His bleak and candid accounts of the horrors of war have shaped our understanding of life on the Western Front. Owen spent his formative teenage years at Monkmoor Road and wrote many of his early works here. As Owen’s last home before his untimely death, I am delighted to recognise it for its link to such an iconic and important literary figure.

Roger Bowdler, English Heritage Designation Director, said:

Far from the Western Front, 69 Monkmoor Road is the place where Owen began to find his own poetic voice. The house is little altered, and he would still feel at home in his attic bedroom. It was his last real home and is a tangible link to one of one of our greatest war poets. Already considerable, interest in Owen will continue to grow as we approach the centenary of his death in action in November 1918.

The semi-detached suburban house, built around 1910, displays the typical features of the time and the layout remains almost exactly as Owen would have known it.