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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Out of the ordinary headstones


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As I visit a lot of these places, I see the occasional out of the ordinary headstone, so here is the first one.

Estaire communal cemetery

Rank: Captain Date of Death: 25/09/1915 Regiment/Service: Rifle Brigade 12th Bn. Grave Reference: II. J. 6. Cemetery: ESTAIRES COMMUNAL CEMETERY AND EXTENSION

This one caught my attention, he has a CWGC stone, a private stone, and his mother is buried at the end of the line, that must be quite unique



This is the private stone next to his CWGC one.

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This is the mother's stone




This is the view from the son's grave, and you can see the mother's grave at the end of the row.


If you have any other examples of different stones, please feel free to post.


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Thanks for posting. I wonder which of the soldiers stones went in first and if the relatives had to pay for a double sized plot?

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I have seen private headstones used, which were not replaced with IWGC marker stones, but I do not remember seeing two grave markers being used for one man like this before and certainly not with the graves of family members a short distance away. is this unique?????


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Ligny-en-Cambresis village cemetery.

The piece of hawthorn is from the village where he lived


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Other CWGC grave markers at Ligny-en-Cambresis


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  • 2 years later...

There are also a couple of grave markers in Brompton Cemetery in London that relate to Captain Oldfield and his mother. They are to the east of the path by the colonnades leading to the cemetery chapel. The first is a memorial for Laurel Cecil Francis Oldfield, Barrister at Law of the Inner Temple, and Captain, 12th Rifle Brigade; next to it is a memorial for his mother, noting that she had been buried near to her son at Estaires.

brompton-01-2016-05-20 10-28-07 - IMG_4917rev.JPG

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If I could add to this topic with a boy from my old school.


William Malcolm Chisholm.  Killed in Action 27th August 1914.  Buried, by the Germans, in a mass grave at Ligny-en-Cambresis Communal Cemetery.

This was the first boy from Sydney Grammar School  to be killed in WW1, it is believed he is the first Australian born boy to be killed in WW1.

Fighting with the 1st Btn., East Lancashires.


The grey Memorial stone, erected by the French, has engraved on it  ‘ici reposit Lieutenant Chisholm East Lancashire Regiment avec 32 soldats Anglais dans la bataille ou 26 Aout 1914’.


His mother Emma Isabel died in the very early '20s, heartbroken.  Her ashes were transported over, a plot was purchased and they were placed in an urn with a shroud.  The story is told that shroud on the urn (photo) was carved so that she could just peek around the edge onto his grave.  The first time I visited Malcolm I did not know this - the next time, in 2014, I did, and that place had far greater poignancy.  It is often said that parents in those days were far more 'austere' with emotion towards their children - following the boys from SGS certainly has shown me otherwise!!


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800 - CHIf (Small).JPG

Edited by Creafield
spelling - *sigh*
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