Unique IDCWGC/2/2/1/237
File NumberWG 1831/179
TitleCOMMISSION MEETING NO.237 - July 1941


DescriptionMinutes of the 237th Meeting of the Commission
Content NoteTopics covered:

Circulation, approval, and signing of the Minutes of the 236th Meeting.

Update on action taken as to resolution concerning Final Verification which was passed at the previous meeting.

Apologies for absence received from the Adjutant-General (Sir Ronald Adam), Sir William Mitchell, and Mr Lawson.

Announcement of the deaths of Sir James Parr, High Commissioner for New Zealand in 1926-1929 and in 1934-1936; Sir William Pulteney, founder of the Memorial Church and the British School at Ypres; and Miss Gertrude Drayton, whose work at the Victoria League had been of so much help to the staff, and who was killed in an air raid when bombs fell on the Victoria League Club.

Mentions that the annual American Memorial Day service was held at Brookwood American Cemetery on 1 June, with Mrs Winston Churchill laying the Commission’s wreath.

Mr Menzies, Prime Minister of Australia, had visited Jerusalem War Cemetery and placed a wreath on the Australian Memorial.

Mentions that it had been agreed as per suggestion received from Sir Herbert Hart that the Commission’s office in Eastern District would be moved from Jerusalem to Cairo.

Summary of the Annual Meeting at Nottingham of the National Association of Cemetery and Crematorium Superintendents, attended by Colonel Chettle and Major Murphy. Colonel Chettle read a paper on “Service Burials and the duties of the Commission with regard to Civilian War Dead”.

The Press had reported a statement made by a Canadian pilot that he had seen the Vimy Memorial from a height of 10,000 feet when visibility was good, and that it appeared to be undamaged.

Maintenance Of War Graves Of 1914-1921 In Enemy-Occupied Territory
Refers to Paper laid before the Meeting, with Vice-Chairman explaining that the British staff employed to maintain First World War graves in France and Belgium had returned to England or been interned, so it as not possible to directly maintain these graves.
Refers to Count Memmo, Area Superintendent in Italy, and his duties as well as locally-engaged personnel. Also refers to Major Menzies, Area Superintendent in Greece, who had had to leave Greece when it was invaded, whilst his deputy, Mr Sakharoff, was still in Greece with a staff consisting of White Russian gardeners.

Graves Of The Present War In Eire
Update on situation where there many present war graves, mostly merchant seamen, in Ireland and the question of their marking and maintenance had been raised through the Dominions Office.
Colonel Chettle and Captain Vesper had visited Dublin and come to an agreement with the Eire government, namely that the Eire Government were prepared to mark the graves with wooden crosses and to maintain them.

288th Meeting Of The Finance Committee
Update on the Finance Committee’s meeting which had taken place earlier on the morning of the Meeting, including the completion of the United Kingdom contributions to the Commission’s Endowment Fund .

Civilian War Dead: Commemoration
Update on the collection of records of the civilian war dead, with nearly 38,000 names received from Registrar-Generals and over 15,000 of the relatives concerned had received personal letters and forms by the end of June. Also refers to Captain Housden, the officer in charge of the Branch responsible for this work.

Erection Of Wooden Crosses
Update on the erection of wooden crosses on graves in the United Kingdom, on behalf of the War Office, where 9,376 out of 11,800 registered graves had been marked (7/8 with wooden crosses and the rest with private memorials), and a further total of nearly 2,000 crosses had been made and were in transit.

Desecration Of War Cemeteries In Iraq
Update on the recent desecration of war cemeteries in Iraq, with a figure of £11,814 claimed as compensation following inspection of the damage by Captain Peek and an apology had been received from the Iraqi government. Also mentions question on reconstruction.

Authority For Use Of The Commission Seal
Affixing of the Commission’s seal by the Proper Officer to documents concerning: the transfer of £25.002. 10. 9 per cent Conversion Stock 1943/45 purchased by the Commission for the investment of Reserve Fund (Special); assignments of the commission’s policies under the Superannuation Scheme to Robert Buarly Brook, William Joseph Fisher, Ernest Dore, G. Hards, Alfred A. Joss, James E. Shirley, and H. Parnell; power of attorney to the British Consult, Shiraz, Iran, to act for the Commission in the sale of the British Cemetery, Shiraz.

Dates Of Future Meetings
The next meeting would be held at 12 noon on Wednesday 10 September.

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.B.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. (Representing the High Commissioner for Australia)
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.
Major-General Sir John Kennedy, K.B.E., C.B., C.M.G., D.S.O.

There were also present:
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)
F.C. Sillar Esq. (Acting Assistant Secretary, Finance)
Captain H.P.R. Foster (Legal Adviser)
Captain F. Tyrrell, M.B.E.
Date9/7/1941 - 22/9/1941
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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