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Remembered Today:

New CWGC Commemorations 23.08.19

Terry Denham

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CWGC added the following casualties to the WW1 War Dead Roll today.


FIRTH, John Henry Ackroyd

Sergeant  801

South African Service Corps

Died 10.10.18  Age 34 (illness)

Commemorated: South African Book of Remembrance


The following were all members of the South African Mounted Rifles and are also commemorated temporarily in the South African Book of Remembrance.


ANDRIES, Slater John

Native Constable  131

Died 25.10.18  (influenza)


Native Constable  128

Died 13.11.18  (influenza)


Native Constable  366

Died 07.10.18 (influenza)


Native Constable  2331

Died 23.10.18 (influenza)

JANSEN, Johannes Franz

Constable  2104

Died 22.10.18 (illness)


Mule Driver  1997

Died 22.06.18 (heart disease)

MACALA, William

Native Constable  2625

Died 11.01.17  Age 33 (typhoid)


Native Constable  488

Died 30.10.18 Age 24 (influenza)


Native Constable  2167

Died 09.11.18 (influenza)


Native Constable  610

Died 19.12.17 (tuberculosis)

MANTAME, Albert Bertie

Native Constable  384

Died 09.10.18  (tuberculosis)


Native Constable  2263

Died 19.10.18 (influenza)

MARAIS, Abraham Petrus

Rifleman  5603

Died 01.02.18  Age 24  (liver abscess)


Sergeant  2291

Died 03.05.18 (in accident)


Native Constable  371

Died 18.11.18 (influenza)


Native Constable  369

Died 04.10.17  Age 30  (fell from horse)


Native Constable  447

Died 21.10.18  Age 24  (influenza)

PRICE, Frederick

Corporal  1955

Died 14.02.16  Age 43  (gastro-enteritis)

QCOBONE, Appolis

Native Constable  187

Died 04.08.15  Age 43  (liver disease)




The above were In From the Cold Project cases. (Volunteer: Terry Cawood)

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May They Rest In Peace.

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Excuse my total ignorance, but I have long wondered how new commemorations come about and also how are the dead recognised.

Equally, are these new burials of recently found remains or recognition of individuals by some means and placing names on their headstones?




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The majority of new commemorations are due to research producing names which had been left off casualty lists or whose names had not been put forward for commemoration by CWGC (mainly post-discharge cases who qualify for commemoration). Without the name appearing in the CWGC list, the casualty cannot receive their due official commemoration.


So it is mainly due to a failure in the bureaucracy at some point causing a name to be missed or ignorance of the fact that the person qualified for commemoration that meant they were never added to the official Roll held by CWGC - and, in many cases, not having a grave marked with a war grave headstone or (if missing) their name on one of the official CWGC memorials.


These 'found' names have their graves marked once newly accepted for commemoration and those that have unknown graves are listed on a CWGC memorial to the missing. It is nothing to do with actual remains being found - though they are frequently found and usually buried as 'Unknowns' unless some ID can be made.


The names are found by diligent researchers, family members etc in records and then they have to be put through a lengthy process of acceptance with CWGC and MoD or its equivalent in the five other CWGC member countries - provided sufficient evidence can be found to prove qualification.

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David, I'm not sure how typical my experience is, but IFTC put forward a case for a soldier I found who was not listed at CWGC & a headstone was eventually erected.  He was CSM Albert Pearce of the 7th Bedfordshires.


The information came from a memorial book his employers published in 1917.  The reason he was not on the then Imperial War Graves list was that he died in hospital of his injuries just one month after his discharge from the army in 1916. Fortunatly his death certificate confirmed this, and his service records were available on ancestry.  Finding his grave was another matter & involved a friend of mine ringing round all the cemeteries around South Tottenham, but was sucessful.



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Thank you both for your replies. I may be thick, or am missing the point, but I remain unaware how a name can be definitely linked to an unmarked individual grave without some analysis of the body. What am I missing out on?



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14 hours ago, David Filsell said:

how a name can be definitely linked to an unmarked individual grave


Why do you think they are unmarked? As far as the UK is concerned, unless they ended up in an unmarked paupers grave there is likely to be a headstone. There is a danger that after a century it may well have fallen into disrepair, but the grave site itself should be identifiable from cemetery registers.


A couple of years ago I came across the headstone of Bertie Thomas Ellis in the churchyard at Hempnall, Norfolk. Bertie is a casualty accepted by the CWGC and he was then shown on their website as Commemorated at the United Kingdom Book of Remembrance. The irony is that very closeby is a headstone for a WW2 casualty that is nearly inaccessible without walking past the headstone for Bertie Ellis, so anyone visiting from the CWGC would have seen it.


I emailed to the CWGC requesting an amendment to their records and got a response that it had been passed to the relevant team. A follow up six months later didn't even get an acknowledgment. I then tried the Hempnall parish clerk, suggesting that while I didn't know how much was involved there could be some money in it for the parish and that as they already have CWGC maintained graves, they might have better luck with their direct contacts. After three months I got an anodyne email from the Vicar assuring me that Berties' name was read out each Remembrance Sunday. So I've given up. As of 08.45 on the 3rd September 2019 the CWGC webpage for Bertie Thomas Ellis still shows him as Commemorated at UNITED KINGDOM BOOK OF REMEMBRANCE along with 312 other individuals.



38141309051_2677dc92b8.jpgBertie Ellis (late Coldstreams) & Percy Ellis (drowned on the Aragon). by Moominpappa06, on Flickr


Of course there may be issues with establishing legally who is responsible for the plot - the CWGC need their consent in order to erect a marker. For many of those men & women buried like Bertie that could involve a ton of genealogy work, and so it could be that the case for Bertie is in legal limbo. However still can't see why the CWGC can't add something to their website with a disclaimer that they are not yet legally responsible for maintaining the gravesite.




Edited by PRC
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When a UK casualty is listed by CWGC  on a UK memorial, can Terry tell us what is the usual length of time  that passes, from when a casualty's actual resting place is discovered and notified to CWGC, to the time the CWGC change the entry in their database?


About 6 weeks ago I notified CWGC of a grave I had found. I submitted a photograph of the grave and a newspaper cutting of a report of the funeral. They said they would ask their regional team to visit the grave and check the details.The CWGC still have him commemorated on a UK memorial only.


I realise 6 weeks is nothing, but in your experience, when would we be likely to see a change of the database entry?

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hi David,


In the case of my soldier it was the cemeteries burial register that gave the grave row/number & a copy of this register had to be submitted by Terry before a headstone could be erected. CWGC were very diligent in not marking an incorrect plot so he ended up with a "buried near this spot" headstone, as due to poor cemetery records there was a chance that it was either of two adjacent plots. We believe that his actual unmarked plot was covered by the monument of the adjacent plot, when that was moved & rested on his plot to allow a further reinterment post WW1 & never moved back to its correct plot.

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  • 1 year later...

FIRTH, John Henry Ackroyd

Sergeant  801

South African Service Corps

Died 10.10.18  Age 34 (illness)

Commemorated: South African Book of Remembrance

Commemoration moved to Kimberley West End Cemetery.

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