The service for a Welsh Guardsman at Guards' Cemetery Lesboeufs, on the former battlefields of the Somme (Photo © Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

Three unknown British WW1 soldiers buried at CWGC cemeteries in France

Posted on centenarynews.com on 17 September 2015
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Three British soldiers of the First World War have been buried at Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemeteries after the discovery of their remains in France.

All the men are unknown, despite extensive identification efforts.

Two of the burial services took place on September 9th.

An unknown soldier of an unknown regiment was laid to rest at Vieille-Chapelle New Cemetery La Couture, a village near Béthune.

Tributes at Vieille-Chapelle New Cemetery (Photo © Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

Later the same day, an officer of the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire Light Infantry was buried at CWGC H.A.C. Cemetery in Écoust-St Mein. 

His remains were discovered in a private garden in the village of Hénin-sur-Cojeul, southeast of Arras.

In spite of research by the regiment and the UK defence ministry's Joint Casualty and Compassionate Centre (JCCC), he could not be identified. 

The service was attended by representatives of the Rifles Regiment.

The Rev.Catherine Gillham, Chaplain to 1st Battalion Welsh Guards, conducting the service at H.A.C. Cemetery, Écoust-St Mein (Photo © Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

The third of the burials took place on September 11th, 

Almost 100 years after he was killed in action in September 1916, an unknown Welsh Guardsman was laid to rest at Guards' Cemetery, Lesboeufs, near Bapaume,

His remains were found on the outskirts of the Somme village of Ginchy. Efforts to identify him were again unsuccessful.

The Welsh Guards were represented at the soldier's burial.

All three services were conducted by the Rev.Catherine Gillham, Chaplain to 1st Battalion Welsh Guards. Representatives of the UK Defence Staff and local dignitaries attended.

The burials were by arranged by the JCCC Commemorations Team. The Commonwealth War Graves Commission organised preparation of the soldiers' graves, headstone manufacture and installation.

Source: Commonwealth War Graves Commission

All images © CWGC

Posted by Peter Alhadeff, Centenary News