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Circulation, approval, and signing of the Minutes of the 274th Meeting.
Apologies for absence received from J.L. Lawson, Sir Samuel Runganadhan, Sir Ronald Adam, Sir Martin Dunbar-Nasmith, Sir John Kennedy and Sir John Shute.
Review Of Recent Events
Announcement that the High Commissioner for Canada had nominated Colonel Eric Jones, D.C.M., E.D., Administrative Officer at Canada House, to represent him on the Commission, in succession to Mr MacLeod who was retiring.
Colonel A.E. Brown, Director of War Graves Services, Australia, had been invited to attend the meeting.
Mention that Sir Robert Gordon-Finlayson and Colonel Higginson would leave shortly for the Middle East.
Philip Hepworth, the Commission’s Principal Architect for France, had left the UK on 27 November to visit 1939-1945 war cemeteries in France, accompanied by Wing Commander Greensill and made contact with Colonel Stott. 21 sites were visited and Hepworth had submitted sketches for all.
Announcement that Captain W. McIndoe, M.C., the Commission’s District Inspector for Scotland, had received the M.B.E. in the New Year’s Honours.
On 4 January 1945, the 44th Meeting of the Commission’s District Inspectors was held at Wooburn House.
Christmas greetings and parcels of cigarettes and tobacco were sent to around 30 members of the Commission’s staff who were still interned.
A party of the Commission's staff had left this country on January 13th to reopen the office at Arras. Wing Commander Greensill was in charge and was accompanied by Mr. Abbot (the Chief Cashier), three Clerks, a Travelling Superintendent Gardener, six Gardeners, a Travelling Craftsman and a Driver.
A report from Major Macfarlane, one of the three members of the advance party, covering his inspection of 120 cemeteries and 30 memorials in France and Belgium. Little damage in general was reported and mentions he was warmly received in Ypres by the local community.
Mention that Mr Millington, Area Superintendent in Turkey, had been in charge of the work to remove a number of isolated graves on the south-western shore of Asia Minor to Haidar Pasha Cemetery.
Proposed Establishment Of An Australian Agency
Mention that, following discussions with Colone Brown and the High Commissioner for Australia, a provision agreement was reached for the establishment of an Agency of the Commission in Australia.
Update on the discussions which had taken place, with summary of the scope of the work involved and resolution for the Vice-Chairman to take necessary steps of ascertaining the wishes of the Australian Government and other Governments interested regarding the proposals before reporting further to the Commission.
Report Of The 309th Meeting Of The Finance Committee: Annual Estimates For 1945-1946
Adoption of the Report of the Finance Committee, with reference to items covering the annual estimates for 1945-1946, as well as an item for £40,000 for North Africa and comments about availability of labour across the various parts of the world where the Commission was engaged.
Report Of The Committee On Flagstaffs Appointed At The 263rd Meeting
Update on the Committee on Flagstaffs, with mention that if it was proposed to erect flagstaffs in cemeteries in foreign countries then the agreement of those countries would have to be obtained.
Comment from Air Chief Marshal Sir Arthur Longmore that the flags would help draw visitors’ attention to cemeteries and particular mention about flags used at Brookwood and Newark.
German Burials In The United Kingdom
Refers to Sir John Shute’s uneasiness about the treatment of German graves in the UK at a previous meeting, with agreement for the present practice to be followed, in that the treatment accorded to German would be the same as British graves.
Headstone Badge Designs – Second Report
Mentions that a report was submitted which described the progress made in obtaining approval of the regimental designs for engraving on headstones.
Comments about Newfoundland badge on headstones and the question of Dominion and Colonial personnel raised at previous meetings.
Maintenance Of War Graves, United Kingdom – 9th Quarterly Report
Comment from the Vice-Chairman that the report submitted gave an interesting account of the progress of the work under Major Murphy.
Negotiations With Allied Representatives – 9th Report
Comment from Colonel Chettle that the Commission was on very friendly terms with the United States authorities and the Commission was able to help materially with the removal of some American graves to Cambridge.
Superannuation Scheme – Assignment Of Commission’s Policies – Gardener-Caretaker R.H. Webber
Resolution for the assignment of three policies of the Commission to Gardener-Caretaker Richard Henry Webber.
Date Of Next Meeting
The next meeting would be held at 11 a.m. on Wednesday 21 February 1945.
Major-General Fabian Ware, K.C.V.O., K.B.E., C.B., C.M.G., LL.D. (Vice-Chairman, in the Chair)
E. MacLeod, Esq. (Representing the High Commissioner for Canada)
V.C. Duffy, Esq., M.V.O. (Representing the High Commissioner for Australia)
C. Knowles, Esq., C.B.E. (Representing the High Commissioner for New Zealand)
I.T. Meyer, Esq. (Representing the High Commissioner for South Africa)
D. James Davies, Esq., C.B.E. (Representing the Government of Newfoundland)
Lieut.-Colonel S.J. Cole, C.M.G., O.B.E. (Representing the Secretary of State for the Colonies)
General Sir Robert Gordon-Finlayson, K.C.B., C.M.G., D.S.O.
Air Chief Marshal Sir Arthur Longmore, G.C.B., D.S.O.
There were also present:
Lieut.-Colonel Sir Frederic Kenyon, G.B.E., K.C.B.
Brigadier J.K. McNair, C.B.E. (Director of Graves Registration and Enquiries, War Office)
Lieut.-Colonel A.E. Brown (Director of War Graves Services, Australia)
Lieut.-Colonel Sir Herbert Ellissen, C.B.E. (Adviser on Post-War Organisation and Reconstruction)
Lieut.-Colonel F. Higginson, C.M.G. (Controller and Director of Works)
Lieut.-Colonel H.F. Chettle, C.M.G., O.B.E. (Director of Records)
F.C. Sillar, Esq. (Assistant Secretary, Finance)
Major R.W. Murphy, M.B.E. (Area Superintendent, United Kingdom)
C.R. Kirton, Esq., M.B.E.
Lieutenant O.D. Holt