Chairman of the Commission
Announcement that the Secretary of State for Defence, Chairman of the Commission had decided to be represented at Meetings of the Commission which he himself was unable to attend, and welcome to Mr J M Wilson as the Secretary of State's personal representative.
Mr P S Cooper
The Chairman welcomed Mr P S Cooper who was representing the High Commissioner for Canada for the first time.
President of the Commission - Visit to war graves in Burma
Note that during their visit to Burma, their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Kent had visited the War Cemetery at Taukkyan.
High Commissioner for India
Announcement that Mr B K Nehru, the High Commissioner for India had taken up post
Monsieur le Vicomte Paul Van Zeeland
Announcement of the death of Vicomte Paul van Zeeland, who had been a Member of the Commonwealth-Belgian Joint Committee for 21 years.
Appointment of Secretary and Director-General
Invitation to the President to appoint Arthur Keith Pallot CMG to be Secretary and Director-General of the Commission, which was accepted.
Matters arising from the Minutes of the 513th Meeting
Update on the proposed Turkish Memorial on the Gallipoli Peninsula.
Update from Mr Pallot on Estimates of expenditure for 1973 -74, with an emphasis on the impact of the fall of the pound, causing a rise in the Commission's annual expenditure.
Update on the proposed Liverpool Memorial.
Update on reorganisation in the Pacific Region.
Update on regrouping of graves in Tanzania.
Report of the 555th Meeting of the Finance Committee
Adoption of report, including clarification from Mr Pallot on the reasons behind the increase in expenditure, and an update on the trials and usage of toxic wash on headstones under different conditions
54th Annual Report and Statement of Accounts of the Commission
Approval of the 54th Annual Report and Statement of Accounts of the Commission.
Commonwealth-Foreign Joint Committees – Appointment of Members
Commonwealth-Belgian Joint Committee:
Mr P S Cooper (Minister-Counsellor (Administration) Canadian High Commission, London)
Commonwealth-Danish Joint Committee:
Mr Uffe Himmelstrup (Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
Her Britannic Majesty's Consul, Copenhagen, ex officio
The Consul of Canada, Copenhagen, ex officio
Commonwealth-Italian Joint Committee:
Dr Paolo d'Alessandro (Ministry of Education)
Mr D B G McLean (Deputy High Commissioner, New Zealand High Commission, London)
Commonwealth-Japanese Joint Committee:
Mr Yoshi Fujimoto (European and Oceanic Affairs Bureau, Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
Commonwealth-Netherlands Joint Committee:
Mr D W McNicol CBE (Deputy High Commissioner, Australian High Commission)
Tehran War Cemetery and the Tehran Memorial
Update on the Tehran War Cemetery and the proposal to replace the Tehran Memorial with a Memorial Register.
Unmaintainable Graves – United Kingdom: Culworth Baptist Chapelyard, Northants
Approval of the proposal to commemorate one Commonwealth War burial in Culworth Baptist Chapelyard, Northants by re-erecting the headstone, suitably superscribed in the war graves plot on Northampton (Towcester Road) Cemetery, Northants.
Unmaintainable Graves – United Kingdom: Stretford (St. Matthew) Churchyard, Lancashire
Approval of the proposal to commemorate 2 Commonwealth War burials in Stretford (St. Matthew) Churchyard, by erecting two Commission headstones, one existing and one new, with suitable superscriptions, side by side against the wall of the Church.
Unmaintainable Graves – United Kingdom: Healey (Christ Church) Churchyard, Rochdale, Lancashire
Approval of the proposal to commemorate 3 Commonwealth War burials of the 1914-1918 War in Healey (Christ Church) Churchyard, Rochdale, Lancashire, by the re-erection of the headstones, suitably superscribed, on an appropriate site in the same churchyard.
Unmaintainable Graves – United Kingdom: Lindley (Zion) Methodist Chapelyard, Yorkshire
Approval of the proposal to commemorate four Commonwealth War Burials of the 1914-1918 War in Lindley (Zion) Methodist Chapelyard, Yorkshire on an existing Screen Wall in Huddersfield (Edgerton) Cemetery less than a mile away.
Unmaintainable Graves – United Kingdom: Kirkton-Of-Mailer Churchyard, Forgandenny, Perthshire
Approval of the proposal to commemorate one Commonwealth War burial in Kirkton-of-Mailer Churchyard, Forgandenny, Perthshire, by re-erecting the headstone, suitably superscribed, in Perth (Wellshill) Cemetery about 3 miles away.
Execution of Documents
Confirmation of the action for the execution by the Commission or on its behalf of the documents, Serial Nos. Part I 477, 478 and 480 to 484, and Part II 91 to 96 referred to in the Schedule laid before the Meeting and signed for identification by the Commission's Legal Advisor and Solicitor.
Reports from Regions, Areas and Agencies: Quarter ended 30 June 1973.
Comment noting the high number of visitors visiting the cemeteries and memorials.
Report from Admiral Twiss on his visit to mainly First World War cemeteries in Northern Italy, which he had found in excellent condition, although isolated graves in Venice Communal Cemetery needed some attention. Report from the Secretary of his visit with the Area Superintendent, North West Europe in Norway, Denmark, and Sweden for 10 days, where they had visited a large number of sites, which they found to be very well maintained. Report from the Secretary of his visit to the Commission's Reunion and Flower Show at Ypres and the France Area, where the cemeteries were very well maintained, and included the German Cemetery at Langemarck and the Belgian War Cemetery in the great wood of Houthulst. Report of the visit by the Canadian Minister of Veterans' Affairs to Head Office, and then France, Belgium and Italy which enabled him to see and hear about the Commission's work. Report of the success of the visit of the President of the German War Graves organisation.
Report that the Head Office Conference which had taken place after the last Commission meeting had been of great value to the officials at Head office and to those from overseas.
Note that the usual short broadcast on the Commission's work would take place on BBC Radio 4 at 10:30 on Remembrance Sunday 11th November with Brian Johnston as the commentator.
Note that an exhibition held in Guildford until 20th October featured Sir Edward Maufe's works for the Commission.
Note that the Annual Gardeners' Service would be held in St. George's Chapel, Westminster Abbey on Thursday 8th November at 3pm.
Announcement of the retirement of Mr Verner Wylie, and that the Secretary of State for Defence would be submitting the name of Mr Aubrey Buxton MC to the Queen as a replacement.
Tripoli War Cemetery, Libya
Update on proposed re-siting of the Commonwealth War Cemetery at Tripoli, Libya.
Discovery of remains in France
Report from Mr Laing on the discovery of remains in France, where the remains of a number of First World War casualties had been discovered during excavations for a motorway at Loos-en-Gohelle, and it was likely some were British and some German, and were to be reburied in one grave in Terlincthum British Cemetery under a headstone inscribed '8 Unknown Soldiers of the Great War'.The excavations had also yielded the remains of 2 further soldiers, which had been partially identifiable as British, and would be reburied in the same cemetery in a separate grave under a headstone inscribed ' 2 Unknown British Soldiers of the 1914-1918 War'.
Reminder that the next meeting of the Commission would be held on Tuesday 18th December at 11 am at Head Office.
Air Chief Marshall Sir Walter Cheshire GBE KCB (Vice Chairman of the Commission, in the Chair)
Mr J.M. Wilson (Representing the Secretary of State for Defence)
Mr P.S. Cooper (Representing the High Commissioner for Canada)
Colonel A.D. Watt OBE (Representing the High Commissioner for Australia)
Mr D.B.G. Mclean (Representing the High Commissioner for New Zealand)
General Amreek Singh (Representing the High Commissioner for India)
Mr J.W.T. Pritchard (Representing the Minister for Housing and Construction)
Sir Robert Black GCMG OBE
Mr Verner Wylie
Miss Joan Woodgate CBE RRC
Admiral Sir Frank Twiss KCB DSC
Mr E. L. Gardner QC MP
General Sir Noel Thomas KCB DSC MC
Mr W.J. Chalmers CB CBE (Director- General)
There were also present (after Item 1 of the Agenda):
Mr A.K. Pallot CMG (Assistant Secretary, Director of Finance and Establishments)
Mr P.H.M. Swan (Assistant Secretary, Director of External Relations)
Mr P.R. Matthew BA (Legal Advisor and Solicitor)
Mr W.H. Dukes (Director of Works)
Mr W.F.W. Harding OBE Bsc (Hort) FLS (Director of Horticulture)
Mr A.S. Laing NVO (Director of Information Services)
Mr W.J. Symons (Adminstrator, Overseas Direct Administration Department)
Mr D.H. Lloyd (Director, United Kingdom)
Mr I. C. Haydon (Private Secretary to Director-General)