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egbert

CWGC during WW2- cemetery identification, Boulogne?

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egbert

Here is a video sequence from an unknown British cemetery filmed by Germans visiting around the 1940 French-German armistice timeframe. Anybody recognizes the location? Is this CWGC cem indeed Boulogne-sur-Mer?

Please go to film timing 10:13:31, preceding at 10: 13:18 supposed to be Boulogne-sur-mer.

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egbert

There is a distinct high cross visible and a massive tomb-like stone of remembrance. does that help to identify the cemetery?

I think it is a remarkable document how desolate the CWGC cemetery is/was maintained. The shrubs and weeds are at least 6-12 months old, and demonstrate the poor care long before the German occupation of France.

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303man

Boulogne Sur Mer cemetery headstones lay flat I believe.

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Michelle Young

Not Boulogne Eastern as the stones of the WW1 plot are laid flat. 10:13:24 is I think Calias hotel de Ville. The cemetery entrance is quite distinctive and there is a curved wall behind the cross. It's not Calais Southern.

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roel22

Can't help you Egbert, but some nice shots of Ypres, especially the rebuilding of the Cloth Hall (10:14:52)

Roel

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Marco

The building is indeed Calais Town hall and assuming the film is in its original order the cemetery is between Calais and Ypres. The way the rest is filmed, I do not think they made a large detour to film the cemetery. I would guess it is adjacent to a main road.

Have fun: http://aur.home.xs4all.nl/layout/frames.htm?geo/MAIN.htm :-)

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Scalyback

There is a distinct high cross visible and a massive tomb-like stone of remembrance. does that help to identify the cemetery?

I think it is a remarkable document how desolate the CWGC cemetery is/was maintained. The shrubs and weeds are at least 6-12 months old, and demonstrate the poor care long before the German occupation of France.

Sorry have to pull you up on that. The CWGC was told withdraw by the british gov. Some did, some did not. My Great grandfather tended his site all the time the Germans was there. So if the worker went when told the cemetery would go down hill. Others carried on and annoyed the hell out of the Germans. His son(my Grandfather) done the same in the POW camps!

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egbert

Thanks Marco, unfortunately I do not know the cemeteries between Ypres and Calais/Boulogne. Maybe somebody here from GWF is more knowledgeable and has visited those cemeteries.

@Scalyback.

Whether CWGC gardeners have been called back by the British government in May 1940 or not. It has no impact on my observation. I think you shall not misinterpret the film sequence only because your Gr Grandfather cared for CWGC cemeteries under occupation.

The fact is that the film has been put on negative sometime between end of May, the days when Calais were taken, and the armistice in June 22nd. Also, the following film sequences from the same roll allow the pretty exact timing.

So we are talking here of a scene that was filmed sometime in June 1940. Do you really want to put me up and try to convince me that the shrubs, weeds, trees and partially overgrown graves grow within 2-4 weeks?

I have posted 1940 pictures on GWF of CWGC Merville, taken by my father (see my Grandfathers thread here on GWF). My father was the first German officer visiting this cemetery in May 1940 during the fightings and combat around Merville. The pictures show that this CWGC cemetery also is not in a good shape, the day the first German troops came to town!

The German Army directive has been discussed elsewhere here and it is known that the Germans honored all cemeteries of their foes. They did not hinder the work of CWGC gardeners.

I do appreciate the work of your Gr Grandfather very much! Some brave and dedicated gardeners. I by myself have met a CWGC gardener in the 1970s (see my Grandfather thread) and was stunned by Mr Fishlock's dedication. We had contact with him and he cared for the grave of my German Grandfather on "his" CWGC until he died.

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Tom Tulloch-Marshall

Not quite the correct angle.

post-108-0-85069200-1421352830_thumb.jpg

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Scalyback

Egbert.

The evacuation of CWGC staff was before May 1940 and started before this with planning starting in April 1939. Your 2-4 week time frame is incorrect, I stand by my comments.

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Tom Tulloch-Marshall

Egbert.

The evacuation of CWGC staff was before May 1940 and started before this with planning starting in April 1939. Your 2-4 week time frame is incorrect, I stand by my comments.

There is a fair amount of material about this in files at the CWGC archive in Maidenhead. Any suggestion that IWGC staff (lets get it right - they were Imperial War Graves Commission staff; the CWGC did not exist in 1940) did a premature "runner" ahead of the arrival of the Boche is very misguided. I have been surprised, firstly, at how long the IWGC "allowed" workers (and their families) to stay in Europe, and secondly how long some of the staff stayed after they were being urged to evacuate. Some, as has been pointed out already, stayed throughout the war - some of them risking torture and murder at the hands of the Germans by assisting the escape chains and La Résistance Française.

The cemetery in the film is the one in my earlier photograph - this one >

post-108-0-46905100-1421360724_thumb.jpg

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egbert

It's good to have an own standpoint, but it's better to have a fact based standpoint unbiased by personal/family interests

I stand by mine- based on the facts of the timeframe, what you can actually see and the other proven fact from Merville.

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Tom Tulloch-Marshall

The evacuation of CWGC staff was before May 1940 and started before this with planning starting in April 1939. Your 2-4 week time frame is incorrect, I stand by my comments.

Correspondence in the CWGC archive at Maidenhead supports your view. The cemetery in the OP film is the one shown in post # 9 and here >

post-108-0-50844600-1421492529_thumb.jpg

Tom

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egbert

Not quite the correct angle.

attachicon.gifGWF - THE CEMETERY - FOC.BTW (1).JPG

and the other 2 postings: Why do you post snippets without sharing the info you might have? Anything wrong to post the name of the cemetery?

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johnboy

Correspondence in the CWGC archive at Maidenhead supports your view. The cemetery in the OP film is the one shown in post # 9 and here >

attachicon.gifGWF - THE CEMETERY - FOC.BTW (2).JPG

Tom

Why post the same pic twice without naming the cemetery? It seems to add nothing.

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Michelle Young

No idea why Tom is not just saying which cemetery it is, please put me out of my misery and let us know

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egbert

No idea why Tom is not just saying which cemetery it is, please put me out of my misery and let us know

As Tom is a professional researcher getting a lot of free information from this forum, maybe he can pay back from time to time here on GWF without monetary compensation?

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Tom Tulloch-Marshall

No idea why Tom is not just saying which cemetery it is, please put me out of my misery and let us know

Michelle - I have e-mailed to you throw some light onto the darkness.

regards - Tom

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Michelle Young

Could our mystery cemetery be Sanctuary Wood?

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River97

I commented on the original thread, what a magnificent piece of film this is.

It is a shame a question about a mystery cemetery has been hijacked by irrelevant statements and a member who knows but won't tell.

Really?

Cheers Andy.

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johnboy

I commented on the original thread, what a magnificent piece of film this is.

It is a shame a question about a mystery cemetery has been hijacked by irrelevant statements and a member who knows but won't tell.

Really?

Cheers Andy.

Andy, a straight forward question has been asked. A member has virtually said ' I know where it is' twice without telling.

Is this a helpful thing to do? No.

I have not read any irrelevant statements.

In future I think I will put that member on 'Ignore' as this is not the first time .

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Simon Brown

No idea why Tom is not just saying which cemetery it is, - Maybe you haven't grovelled enough and pampered to the person who posted !

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johnboy

grovelling and pampering is the Skindles domain.

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Simon Brown

Michelle

Good call on it being Sanctuary Wood. Have just looked at the cemetery plan, and also the original video. If you pause at 10.13.36 then the headstone on the third row back of the right of the path has a Canadain badge I think. On the cemetery plan this would be Plot III, Row D Grave 1 which is a Canadian casualty.

Best shout at a suggestion so far

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Simon Brown

johnboy

Indeed. A good shout from Michelle though so credit to her. Nay chance of me being a professional though, as I cant even spell Canadain! Lol

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