Unique IDCWGC/2/2/1/243
File NumberWG 1831/185
TitleCOMMISSION MEETING NO.243 - July 1942


DescriptionMinutes of the 243rd Meeting of the Commission
Content NoteTopics covered:

Circulation, approval, and signing of the Minutes of the 242nd Meeting, and mention that the resolution passed in regard to the temporary register of Civilian War Dead had also been circulated.

Temporary Marking Of Royal Air Force Graves
Response from Sir William Mitchell in reply to a question from the Vice-Chairman, explaining that the Air Ministry had decided to withdraw their request for the placing of the Royal Air Force badge and the letters "I. H. S." on temporary crosses. They’re served the right, however, to raise the point again in connection with the erection of permanent headstones.

Review Of Events
Welcome to Colonel Cole and mentions question of Colonial Office representation had been raised at a recent meeting.
Request from Vice-Chairman for Sir Martin Dunbar-Nasmith to ask Naval authorities whether an informal inspection and report could be arranged regarding British graves in Russia.
Announcement that Sir George Macdonough was seriously ill in hospital.
An annual service of remembrance was held at Brookwood American Cemetery on May 31 and attended by Lady Grigg, wife of the Chairman, accompanied by the Vice-Chairman and Major Murphy. At the end, Lady Grigg laid a wreath on the grave of the first Squadron Leader of the first Eagle Squadron, R.A.F. Also mentions as the day was also Union Day, the flag of South Africa was flying on the Commission’s flagstaff.
Memoranda had been sent recently to both the Anglican and the Catholic Diocesan Bishops asking for prompt information of Service burials in Church burial grounds.
The Wooburn branch of the Women's Voluntary Services had helped the Commission by sorting many thousands of enquiry files relating to the late war and separating for salvage those which had been dormant for ten years. The result was that the waste paper salvaged from Wooburn House during the National Salvage Campaign reached the figure of 19 tons, 6 cwt, 3 quarters; and an expression of the Commission’s warm thanks had been sent to the W.V.S.
Announcement that Mr C.R. Kirton, Chief Assistant to the Assistant Secretary (Finance) had been awarded the M.B.E. in the Birthday Honours List.
Compensation amounting to £11,814 had been received from the Government of Iraq for the desecration of the British Cemeteries at Baghdad and Hinaidi.
On 14 June, Allied flags were flown at Brookwood in response to the Prime Minister’s request that the flags of the United Nations should be honoured.
Update regarding a request from the Foreign Office and the Home Office for the Commission to undertake temporary marking and maintenance of graves of enemy interned civilians on a repayment basis.
Announcement of departure of Major J.A. Mansfield, Honorary Secretary to the Commission’s Malta Agency, and his replacement by Captain E. Wells.
Colonel Chettle had addressed a meeting of the Camberwell Rotary Club about the Commission’s work.

Present War Graves In The United Kingdom
Discussion regarding the maintenance of present war graves in the United Kingdom, noting this a challenge in the current conditions and suggestion for obtaining help from the British Legion and the W.V.S.

Report Of The 291st Meeting Of The Finance Committee
Adoption of the Report of the Finance Committee, with reference to:
Item 3, which disclosed a profit on the running of the Staff Canteen at Wooburn House and the Committee desired their appreciation be conveyed to the W.V.S. and to Mr R.C. Walker.
Item 4, which dealt with the renovation of headstones as long as labour was available.
Item 8, which referred to the sounding of the Last Post at the Loos Memorial, which Rudyard Kipling had paid during his lifetime.
Item 9, which recommended Christmas parcels be again sent to interned members of the Commission’s staff.
Item 10, which dealt with increased rates of pay recommended for District Inspectors.

Committee Of Public Accounts
Refers to agreement at 241st Meeting of the Commission that it would be of value for the Public Accounts Committee to continue to review the Commission’s accounts, so long as it was clearly understood that their submission was voluntary.

First Lists Of Civilian War Dead
Refers to lists of civilian war dead, including further lists covering deaths in places outside the United Kingdom, or resulting from enemy attacks on passenger vessels. Also specifically mentions two women members of the British Legation staff at Sofia, killed by a timebomb in Istanbul.

Commission Staff And Work In The Near East
Update following Vice-Chairman’s communication with the British Embassy at Istanbul which had been asked to keep in touch with Mr Millington at Chanak.
Sir Herbert Hart, recovering from an illness, would concentrate on the work of the Commission, with Major Peek and Major Menzies dealing with the military side.
British graves in Libya were being well looked after by the Germans, and also, though with less efficiency, by the Italians.

Major-General Sir Fabian Ware, K.C.V.O., K.B.E., C.B., C.M.G., LL.D. (Vice-Chairman, in the Chair)
Lieut.-Colonel S.J. Cole, C,M.G., O.B.E. (Representing the Secretary of State for the Colonies)
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)
D.B. Sole, Esq. (Representing the High Commissioner for South Africa)
W.P. Spens, Esq., O.B.E., K.C., M.P.
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.
Admiral Sir Martin Dunbar-Nasmith, V.C., K.C.B.

There were also present:-
Lieut.-Colonel Sir Frederic Kenyon, G.B.E., K.C.B., T.D., D.Litt.
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. (Assistant Secretary, Finance)
Captain F. Tyrrell, M.B.E.
Lieutenant O.D. Holt
Date4/6/1942 - 11/8/1942
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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