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CWGC: Le Touret Memorial and Military Cemetery

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Le Touret Memorial and Military Cemetery

France

Image right - Le Touret Memorial and cemetery By Velvet - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

The Le Touret Memorial to the Missing was constructed on the site of Le Touret Cemetery. The outlines of the memorial site follow exactly the outline of the original civilian cemetery that stood there.

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Image By Wernervc - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

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Le Touret Memorial

The Le Touret Memorial commemorates 13,389 names British and Commonwealth soldiers with no known grave who were killed in the area prior to the start of the Battle of Loos on 25 September 1915.

The exceptions are Canadian soldiers, whose names are commemorated at the Vimy Memorial, and Indian Army soldiers, whose names appear on the Neuve-Chapelle Memorial. Those who fell during the northern pincer attack at the Battle of Aubers Ridge are commemorated on the Ploegsteert Memorial.

The Memorial takes the form of a loggia surrounding an open rectangular court. The names of those commemorated are listed on panels set into the walls of the court and the gallery, arranged by regiment, rank and alphabetically by surname within the rank.

The memorial was designed by John Reginald Truelove, who had served as an officer with the London Regiment during the war, and unveiled by the British ambassador to France, Lord Tyrrell, on 22 March 1930.

Almost all of the men commemorated on the Memorial served with regular or territorial regiments from across the United Kingdom and were killed in actions that took place along a section of the front line that stretched from Estaires in the north to Grenay in the south. This part of the Western Front was the scene of some of the heaviest fighting of the first year of the war, including the battles of

  • La Bassée (10 October – 2 November 1914),
  • Neuve Chapelle (10 – 12 March 1915),
  • Aubers Ridge (9 – 10 May 1915), and
  • Festubert (15 – 25 May 1915).

Notable Commemoratees Le Touret memorial

  • Private Abraham Acton, VC. "B" Coy. 2nd Bn. Border Regiment, 16/05/1915, aged 21. Panel 19 and 20. Son of Robert and Elizabeth Eleanor Acton, of 4, Regent Square, Senhouse St., Whitehaven, Cumberland.
  • Corporal William Anderson, VC. 2nd Bn. Yorkshire Regiment, 13/03/1915, aged 29. Panel 12. Native of Dallas, Elgin, Morayshire.
  • Private Edward Barber, VC. 1st Bn. Grenadier Guards, 12/03/1915, aged 22. Panel 2. Son of William and Sarah Ann Barber, of Miswell Lane, Tring, Herts.
  • Private Jacob Rivers, VC. 1st Bn. Sherwood Foresters (Notts and Derby Regiment), 12/03/1915, aged 32. Panel 26 and 27. Son of Mrs. Adeline Rivers, of 4 House, Wide Yard, Bridge Gate, Derby

Also commemorated here are Clive and Arnold Baxter, brothers who were killed on the same day, 25th January 1915, in the Brickstacks area of Cuinchy, who have no known grave.

Shot at Dawn

  • Private Edward Tanner, 1st Bn. Wiltshire Regiment, executed for desertion 27/10/1914, aged 33. Panel 33 and 34.
  • Private F. Sheffield, 2nd Bn. Middlesex Regiment, executed for desertion 12/01/1915, aged 26. Panels 31 and 32. Brother of James Sheffield, of 42, Franklin St., South Tottenham, London.
  • Private Joseph Ball, 4th Coy. 2nd Bn. Middlesex Regiment, executed for desertion 12/01/1915 aged 20. Panel 31 and 32. Son of Thomas and Emily Ball, of 112, Lancefield St., Queen's Park, London.
  • Private Thomas Cummings, 1st Bn. Irish Guards, executed for desertion 28/01/1915. Panel 4. Son of William Cummings, of Tully Muckamore, Belfast.
  • Private Albert Smythe, 1st Bn. Irish Guards, executed for desertion 28/01/1915. Panel 4.
  • Private James Briggs, 2nd Bn. Border Regiment, executed for desertion 06/03/1915. Panel 19 and 20.
  • Private Alexander Sinclair (Served as John Duncan), 1st Bn. Cameron Highlanders, executed for desertion 07/03/1915. Panel 41 and 42. Son of William Cummings, of Tully Muckamore, Belfast.
  • Driver John Bell, 57th Bty, Royal Field Artillery, executed for desertion 25/04/1915. Panel 1. Son of John Bell, of Finglas, Co. Dublin.

Le Touret Military Cemetery, Richebourg-L'avoue

The Cemetery was begun by the Indian Corps (and in particular by the 2nd Leicesters) in November, 1914, who began burying their fallen comrades at this site and the cemetery was used continually by field ambulances and fighting units until the German spring offensive began in March 1918. Richebourg L’Avoue was overrun by the German forces in April 1918, but the cemetery was used again in September and October after this territory was recaptured by the Allies. Today over 900 Commonwealth servicemen who were killed during the First World War are buried here.

Le Touret Military Cemetery and Memorial - Roll of Honour

Sources and References