|Content Note||Topics discussed:|
Apologies for absence:
Sir Richard Hopkins
General Sir James Steele
Mr Neethling (on behalf of the High Commissioner for South Africa)
Sir William Halcrow
Prague (Olsany) Cemetery
Note that the Foreign Office had instructed the British Ambassador in Prague to point out to the Czechoslovakian Government that the refusal to grant a visa to the Commission's representative, to visit Prague was a contravention of the Treaty of the 3 March 1949.
Major-General Sir Fabian Ware
Refers to the ceremony which took place on 28 April 1950 at the memorial tablet to Sir Fabian Ware at Westminster Abbey.
Planting of trees at Yokohama
Reading of extract of letter from Sir Alvary Gascoigne, the head of the United Kingdom Liaison Mission in Japan, describing a ceremony on Anzac Day when trees shipped from Australia were planted in the Commonwealth cemetery at Yokohama.
Major-General J.H. Roberts
Refers to resignation of Major-General J.H. Roberts, Chief Administrative Officer, North-West European District, on the grounds of ill health.
Burma Campaign Commemoration Service
Refers to the Service of Thanksgiving and Remembrance held at Westminster Abbey on 11 May 1950 which the Chairman and Secretary had attended.
Visit of Brigadier Athol Brown, the Secretary-General for Anzac Agency, to Fiji.
Mention of report on Brigadier Brown’s recent visit which was summarised in the paper headed “Items of interest”.
Ceremonies held at Bispebjerg and Svino in Denmark
Refers to ceremonies held at these cemeteries to mark the fifth anniversary of the country’s liberation. Mentions that the next of kin of Commonwealth servicemen buried in the cemeteries were in attendance, having been invited by the Danish Government.
Visit of F.C. Sillar, Esq., C.B.E., Principal Assistant Secretary, to Italy, Germany and Luxembourg
Recounts Mr Sillar’s visit in connection with the negotiations with the Treaty with Italy in Rome, with particular mention given to the four Polish cemeteries in Italy. Also notes excellent condition at Gradara and at Montechhio, where Sillar notes he met the gardener who had worked there for some thirty years and “it was the most beautiful cemetery in Italy he had seen”.
Report of the 370th meeting of the Finance Committee
Mostly referred to progress in construction throughout many districts.
Item 20 dealt with Mr Maufe’s revision of his design for memorials to Hindu, Sikh and Gurkha soldiers of the Indian Army who were known to have been cremated.
Item 21 referred to the contract for the completion of the restoration of the Australian National Memorial at Villers Bretonneux.
Report by Vice-Chairman Admiral Sir Martin Dunbar-Smith, V.C., K.C.B.,
Refers to his visit to Belgium, Holland and Germany, with comments about cemeteries at Heverlee, Kasterlee, Geel, Leopoldsburg as well as describing different types of soils and shrubs in use at Valkenswaard and Mierlo. Also comments about exposure of cemetery at Groesbeek and describes inspections of cemeteries in Germany.
Examination of sketch designs for cemetery construction in East Africa Area, including: Mogadishu African War Cemetery, Italian Somaliland; Nyeri Military Cemetery, Kenya; Nanyuki Military Cemetery, Kenya; Gilgil Military Cemetery, Kenya; Tororo Cemetery, Uganda; Dire Dawa (Airport) African War Cemetery, Ethiopia.
Examination of sketch design submitted by Dr. Gordon Leith, F.R.I.B.A., Architect for South African Agency, for Pretoria (Voortrekkerhoogte) New Military Cemetery, South Africa.
Transfer of site of Nicosia (1939-1945) War Cemetery, Cyprus.
Resolution for the transfer for the site of Nicosia War Cemetery from the Government of Cyprus.
Sale of stock for the maintenance of 1914-1918 Australian battlefields memorials.
Resolution for the sale of stock for the maintenance of 1914-1918 Australian battlefield memorials.
Items of interest
Note that attached to the Paper was the text of the broadcast on the Runnymede Memorial given by the Chairman on 9 May 1950
Mention that the Rector of Waldron, Sussex, had mentioned the Commission's work in his sermon on St. George's Day
Mention of further gift of Canadian maples had been made to the Commission by the Ontario Horticultural Association
Complimentary article on the Commission's work had appeared in a recent issue of the Jersey Times.
Progress of work in the Southern European District
Constructional and horticultural work in cemeteries in Italy and Greece
Visit to cemeteries in Sicily and Anzio by the Canadian Ambassador.
Date of next meeting scheduled for Thursday 15 June 1950 at 11:00am.
Admiral Sir Martin Dunbar-Smith, V.C., K.C.B. (Vice-Chairman in the Chair)
W. Hudd, Esq. (Representing the High Commissioner for Canada)
J.D. McAteer, Esq. (Representing the High Commissioner for Australia)
Major-General W.G. Stevens, C.B., C.B.E. (Representing the High Commissioner for New Zealand)
H.J. Neethling, Esq. (Representing the High Commissioner for South Africa)
W.B. England, Esq., M.B.E. (Representing the High Commissioner for India)
Captain J.T. Chopping (Representing the High Commissioner for Pakistan)
J.E. Marnham, Esq., M.C. (Representing the Secretary of State for the Colonies)
General Sir Robert Gordon-Finlayson, C.B., C.M.G., D.S.O.
Air Chief Marshal Sir Arthur Longmore, G.C.B., D.S.O.
Colonel The Rt. Hon. The Lord Wigram, G.C.B., G.C.V.O., C.S.I.
Lieutenant-Colonel Sir Herbert Ellissen, C.B.E.
Sir Patrick Spens, K.B.E., K.C., M.P.
Edward Maufe, Esq., R.A. (Chief Architect and Artistic Adviser)
F. Higginson, Esq., C.M.G. (Secretary)
Also in attendance:
F.C. Sillar, Esq., C.B.E. (Principal Assistant Secretary)
W.J. Chalmers, Esq. (Assistant Secretary)
R.W. Bateman (Director of Works)
O.D. Holt, Esq. (Principal, Secretarial Branch)
Brigadier S. Collingwood, C.B.E., M.C. (Chief Administrative Officer, Southern European District)