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Circulation, approval, and signing of the Minutes of the 235th Meeting.
Apologies for absence received from the Adjutant-General.
Welcome to Sir William Mitchell, first representative on the Commission of the Air Ministry.
Congratulations to Sir George Macdonogh, who had completed twenty-one years’ membership of the Commission.
Announcement that Major Menzies, the Commission’s representative in Greece, had just arrived in Cairo, and it was believed Mr Millington was still able to carry out his work in Chanak.
Mention that Dominion forces in the United Kingdom had been paying for any land necessary for the burial of their troops and steps were being taken to bring this knowledge to the United Kingdom government.
Copies of the Supplemental Charter empowering the Commission to compile records of civilian war dead had been received following its passing the Great Seal on 7 February 1941; update that some 11,000 names had been received and around 1,500 letters had been sent to relatives. Mentions the Vice-Chairman had visited Bristol, Birmingham, Coventry and other cities and found great interest in the Commission’s work for Civilian War Dead and a strong desire to help.
Update on organisational changes in the South African Agency: Brigadier-General Beyers, the new Adjutant-General, had succeeded Brigadier-General Theron as a member, and Captain E.J. Scholtz had taken the late Captain Marais’s place as Secretary.
Announcement of death of M. Paul Hymans, a member of the Anglo-Belgian Mixed Committee for 15 years.
Announcement that copies of the twenty-first Annual Report, published on 12th April, ad been circulated, with mention that it had no photographs for reasons of economy.
Update on British graves in enemy-occupied territory, where in July 1940 the Belgian administration had instructed local authorities to identify and rebury soldiers, other than German, who had died during fighting in Belgium. The Belgian authorities were also caring for the British graves and memorials of the First World War for which the Commission conveyed its thanks.
Mentions arrangements with American authorities in Italy.
Announcement that, in connection with Civilian War Dead, Mr J.J. Mallon, Lady Davidson and Miss Megan Lloyd George had all consented to serve on a small Advisory Committee, and Mr Valentine Bell had been suggested as an additional member.
Authority For The Use Of The Commission’s Seal
Resolution for the affixing of the Commission’s seal to a document concerning the assignment of the Commission’s policy to Miss Dorothy Frances Munday.
Erection Of Headstones Over Present War Graves In The United Kingdom
Discussion regarding the erection of headstones over present war graves in the United Kingdom, which had not taken place due to shortage of labour, pressure on transport and the recurrence of air raids. Mentions 220 cemeteries containing Commission headstones had been bombed, though only 52 headstones had been broken.
It was suggested to send individual notifications to next-of-kin and also for a Ministerial statement be made in the House of Commons and the BBC to deal with the subject in a postscript.
Colonel Higginson mentioned 12 per cent of graves in the United Kingdom were marked by private memorials.
Update received from Directorate of Graves Registration and Enquiries on the registration of graves in North Africa, where cemeteries sites had been acquired and marked with small cairns of stones in Libya.
Major-General Sir Fabian Ware, K.C.V.O., K.B.E., C.B., C.M.G., LL.D. (Vice-Chairman, in the Chair)
Colonel C.E.T. Erskine, C.I.E., D.S.O., M.C. (Representing the Secretary of State for India)
E. MacLeod, Esq. (Representing the High Commissioner for Canada)
C. Knowles, Esq., C.B.E. (Representing the High Commissioner for New Zealand)
D.B. Sole, Esq. (Representing the High Commissioner for South Africa)
Lieut.-General Sir George Macdonogh, G.B.E., K.C.B., K.C.M.G.
J.J. Lawson, Esq., M.P.
Air Marshal Sir William Mitchell, K.C.B., C.B.E., D.S.O., M.C., A.F.C.
There were also present:
Lieut.-Colonel Sir Frederic Kenyon, G.B.E., K.C.B., T.D.
Colonel A.R. MacAllan (A.A.G., D.G.R. & E.)
Colonel C.P. Oswald, C.M.G., O.B.E. (Controller)
Lieut.-Colonel H.F. Chettle, C.M.G., O.B.E. (Director of Records)
Lieut.-Colonel F. Higginson, C.M.G. (Director of Works)
Captain F. Tyrrell, M.B.E.
Second Lieutenant O.D. Holt