Unique IDCWGC/2/2/1/229
File NumberWG 1831/171
TitleCOMMISSION MEETING NO.229 - July 1939


DescriptionMinutes of the 229th Meeting of the Commission
Content NoteTopics covered:

Minutes of the last meeting approved.

Announcement of the death of Sir Thomas Wilford, who was High Commissioner for New Zealand from 1930 to 1934.

Report from the Vice-Chairman that the Anzac area of Gallipoli was recently infested with caterpillars, which caused much damage to plant life, and the Turkish Agricultural Authorities at Chanak had supplied a large quantity of spraying mixture which was used with very satisfactory results.

Mentions the British Military Plot at Verna, Bulgaria, which was visited by Major Menzies, who described it as a pleasant and well cared for site. Major Menzies added that it largely owed its appearance to Captain Baker, the British Vice-Consul, who supplied flowers for each grave all the year round from his own garden.

Mentions that Sir Herbert Hart had reported that the Fourth Meeting of the Iraq Committee of the Commission was held at the British Embassy at Baghdad on 9 June. Among other matters, a report was submitted on the erection of a river wall in front of the Basra Memorial to prevent further erosion. The work would commence as soon as the river, which was in flood, had returned to its normal level.

Mentions that the British Consul at Lille had visited Arras on 21 June and remitted to Monsieur Douay, the Sub-Prefect of Arras, the Order of the British Empire for services rendered to the Commission.

Announcement that Colonel Lionel James, accompanied by forty Old Comrades of King Edward's Horse, had recently visited their Regimental Memorial at Vieille-Chapelle and many cemeteries on the former front line, and he had sent a very appreciative letter commenting on the high standard of maintenance of the cemeteries.

Another expression of appreciation had appeared in the "Australian Traveller" of the 4th April in an article describing a tour of the Ypres Salient.

Announcement that Major-General Laverack, the Australian Chief of staff, had recently made a tour of the former front line in France and Belgium, visiting a number of the Commission's cemeteries and memorials and the Australian Divisional Memorials.

Announcement that the annual ceremony of placing flowers on the graves of Canadian soldiers buried at Shorncliffe Military cemetery by the schoolchildren of Folkestone and Hythe took place on 21st June. The High Commissioner was represented by Mr. Pearson.

Update on the number of visitors signing the Visitors' Books in France and Belgium: during the month of May, it was 11,638 (Memorials 5,808; Cemeteries 5,830) and during the month of June it was 14,141 (Memorials 6,194, Cemeteries 7,947).

Refers to report received from Mr Gill, the Horticultural Officer at Ypres, calling attention to the great energy and the lavish expenditure with which the German cemeteries in Belgium were now being laid out, and refers to large numbers of Germans visiting Stahnsdorf cemetery in Germany.

Overview of the upcoming meeting of the Anglo-Italian Mixed Committee from the Vice-Chairman. Also mentions that Count Memmo, the Secretary-General of the Committee, had recently been promoted to the rank of Major in the Reserve.

Report Of The 283rd Meeting Of The Finance Committee
Adoption of the Report of the Finance Committee, and refers to the provision made for authorising expenditure during the recess, and also that, in general, the Treasury Regulations governing the pay of Civil Servants joining His Majesty's Forces under emergency conditions would be followed by the Commission. The effect would be that an employee of the Commission serving in the armed forces of the Crown would have his pay kept up to What he was receiving when he joined the forces. The Regulation would not apply to men called up for the Militia. Also refers to increase in estimate for casual labour in France and Belgium as well as the recommendations of the Economy Committee for increased workload in the summer.

Anglo-Belgian Mixed Committee - Appointment Of New Member
Resolution that General-Major Walter Emile Coppens be appointed an Official Member of the Anglo-Belgian Mixed Committee in succession to General-Major van Daele.

Anglo-Greek Mixed Committee - Appointment Of New Member
Resolution that Sir Michael Palairet, K.C.M.G., British Minister in Athens, be appointed an Honorary Member of the Anglo-Greek Mixed Committee in succession to Sir Sydney Waterlow, K.C.M.G., C.B.E.

Anglo-Italian Mixed Committee – Appointment Of New Member
Resolution that His Excellency the Right Honourable Sir Percy Loraine, Baronet, G.C.M.G. be appointed, and he is hereby appointed, an Honorary Member of the Anglo-Italian Mixed Committee in succession to the Earl of Perth.

Anglo-Palestine War Cemeteries Executive Committee - Appointment Of Additional Member
Resolution for the appointment of an additional member to the Anglo-Palestine War Cemeteries Executive Committee.

Cemetery And Memorial Registers
Mentions that the Irish Government had carried out the marking of all the British War Graves in Eire to the Commission's satisfaction, except for a slight difficulty with one County Board of Health in the West. Explanation from Chettle that four or five Registers would be published, but almost all of them were for cemeteries still open for the concentration of isolated graves.

Anglo-Italian Mixed Committee – Appointment Of New Italian Members
Resolution that Count Luigi Vidau and Console Vitale Gallina be appointed as Official Members of the Anglo-Italian Mixed Committee.

Discoveries And Reburials - France And Belgium
The Vice-Chairman observed that the paper before the meeting showed not more than five bodies discovered in a period of four weeks. The finders received 10 francs for each body, and there was no reason to suppose that others had been found in the period and not reported. The decrease was seasonal and it could not be assumed to be permanent.
Emergency Measures
Mentions the Commission proceeded to discuss measures taken, or to be taken, in the event of an outbreak of war. (The minutes of this discussion were circulated secretly and entered in the minute book in the following Appendix. )

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)
V.C. Duffy, Esq., M.V.O. (Representing the High Commissioner for Australia)
W.G. Parminter, Esq. (Representing the High Commissioner for South Africa)
The Right Hon. Earl Baldwin of Bewdley, K.C.
Admiral Sir Howard Kelly, G.B.E., K.C.B., C.M.G., M.V.O.
Major-General Sir John Kennedy, K.B.E., C.B., C.M.G., D.S.O.
J.J. Lawson, Esq., M.P.
Lieut.-General Sir George Macdonogh, G.B.E., K.C.B., K.C.M.G.

There were also present:
Lieut.-Colonel C.P. Oswald, C.M.G., O.B.E. (Controller and Assistant Secretary, Finance)
Major H.F. Chettle, C.M.G., O.B.E. (Director of Records)
Lieut.-Colonel E.H. Jarvis (Deputy Director of Works)
F.C. Sillar, Esq.
F. Tyrrell, Esq., M.B.E.
O.D. Holt, Esq.
Date26/6/1939 - 11/10/1939
Extent1 file
CategoryMeeting Notes
ArchNotePlease note that the downloadable document is the final version of the Committee Meeting minutes. Additional information, including the verbatim minutes and subsidiary reports, may be available in the physical file.
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