Unique IDCWGC/2/2/1/539
TitleCOMMISSION MEETING NO.539 - December 1979


DescriptionMinutes of the 539th Meeting of the Commission
Content NoteTopics covered:

Mr van Niekerk and Air Commodore Mackay
Chairman's welcome to Mr van Niekerk who was attending a Commission Meeting as the representative of the South African Ambassador for the first time and Air Commodore Mackay who was representing the New Zealand High Commissioner for the first time.

Canadian High Commissioner
Report of the Commission's regret at the departure of the Honourable Paul Martin Canadian High Commissioner.

Australian High Commissioner
Report of the Commission’s regret at the departure of Sir Gordon Freeth, the Australian High Commissioner.

Burgomaster of Ypres
Announcement of the award of an honorary CBE and its insignia to Mr Albert Dehem the Burgomaster of Ypres.

Memorial Services
Report that the Commission had been represented at the Memorial Service for Field Marshal Sir Gerald Templar by Mr Pallot and that Admiral Sir Frank Twiss would be the representative at the Memorial Service for Lord Mountbatten.

Matters Arising from the Minutes of the 538th Meeting
a) Situation in Iraq regarding the re-negotiation of the War Graves Agreement, and maintenance of the War Cemeteries there.
b) Update on status of the Commissions Organisation Review.
d) Update on status of action taken following theft from Cologne (Southern) Cemetery.

Estimates 1980/1981
Discussion of Expenditure and Estimates for 1978/79, 1979/80 and 1980/81, with the agreement that the Revised Estimate of Expenditure for the financial year 1979/80 is approved at £8,799,095, that the Estimate of Expenditure for the financial year 1980/81 is approved at £9,173,090, and that, to allow for the likely effect of inflation up to the end of March 1981, the Estimate of Expenditure for the financial year 1980/81 should be increased by 15%, to £10,549,055.

Adoption of the Report of the 580th Meeting of the Finance Committee
Item 4 concerned Brandhoek Military Cemetery, where the local authorities in Belgium were proposing to build a new motorway which would cut across one corner of the cemetery.
Item 5 referred to maintenance work at the Menin Gate Memorial.
Item 9 gave approval for the employment of staff in the forthcoming year.
Item 10 concerned the annual pay settlement for the United Kingdom based manual staff.

France Area Accommodation
An update on the estimated development costs of France Area Accommodation.

Malta – Service Cemeteries
Update on the proposal by the Maltese Government to clear and close Service Cemeteries and churchyards in Malta.

Historical Notices in Cemeteries
Update on the status of the writing and placing of Historical Notices in Cemeteries.

Vandalism at Belfast City Cemetery, Northern Ireland
Report on vandalism at Belfast City Cemetery, Northern Ireland and steps taken to repair damage and hinder further acts of vandalism.

Commonwealth- Foreign Joint Committees: Appointment of 5 Members as follows:
Commonwealth-Belgian Joint Committee:
His Excellency Mr O F de V Booysen (South African Ambassador, Brussels)
Commonwealth-French Joint Committee:
Monsieur Jean Meadmore (Directeur des Francais a l'Etranger, Ministere des Affaires Etrangeres) Commonwealth-Italian Joint Committee:
Dottore Marco Sorace Maresca (Counsellor, Western Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
Commonwealth-Netherlands Joint Committee:
His Excellency Mr G H Blouin (Canadian Ambassador, The Hague)
His Excellency Dr Paul Bodenstein (South African Ambassador, The Hague)
Commonwealth-Thai Joint Committee:
Mr D A Burns (Counsellor, British Embassy, Bangkok)

Membership of the Finance Committee
Appointment of Air Chief Marshal Sir John Barraclough KCB, CBE, DFC, AFC to Membership of the Finance Committee.

Graves Not Within The Commission’s Control – United Kingdom
Approval of the classification as not within the Commission's control of the 78 war graves enumerated in Supplementary List No 18 of war graves in the United Kingdom recommended for classification as "not within the Commission's control.

Unmaintainable Graves - Bushey (St James) Churchyard, Hertfordshire
Approval of the commemoration of three burials of the 1914-1918 War in Bushey (St James) Churchyard, Hertfordshire by the erection of a single Special Memorial, suitably superscribed, in the same churchyard; Approval of the commemoration of one burial of the 1939-1945 War in Evington (St Denys) Churchyard, Leicester, Leicestershire, by the erection of a Special Memorial, suitably superscribed, in the same churchyard.

Unmaintainable Graves - Kensal Green (All Souls') Cemetery, Kensington and Hammersmith, Greater London
Approval of the commemoration of one burial of the 1914-1918 War in Kensal Green (All Souls') Cemetery, Kensington and Hammersmith, Greater London by the addition of his name to the existing Screen Wall in the same cemetery.

Execution of Documents
Confirmation of the action for the execution by the Commission or on its behalf of the documents, Serial Nos Part I 560 and 561 and Part II 157 to 159, referred to in the Schedule laid before the Meeting.

Diary Update
Note of the President’s visit to Yokohama War Cemetery on 18 September, and the Chairman's attendance at a special ceremony on Remembrance Sunday in Sunderland.
Report from Miss Joan Woodgate on her visit to Cairo; Report from the Secretary on his visit to Scandinavia, and his tour to Italy.
Report from Mr Kennedy on his tour to the Far East, visiting all the war cemeteries from Thailand eastwards through to Japan, with special note of the problem of development outside Yokohama War Cemetery.

Other Business
Playing of a recording of the radio broadcast transmitted on Remembrance Day.
Announcement of the retirement of Admiral Sir Frank Twiss and Mr P C Aggleton, and the placing on record the appreciation of the Commission for the services of both.

General Sir Noel Thomas KCB DSO MC ((Vice-Chairman of the Commission), in the Chair)
Sir Arthur Hockaday KCB CMG (Representing the Secretary of State for Defence)
Mr G.A. Cowley (Representing the High Commissioner for Canada)
Mr F.C. Murray (Representing the High Commissioner for Australia)
Air Commodore I. V. Mackay AFC (Representing the High Commissioner for New Zealand)
Mr A.E. van Niekerk (Representing the Ambassador of South Africa)
Lt Col D.S. Vasudev (Representing the High Commissioner for India)
Mr P.C. Aggleton (Representing the Minister for Housing and Construction)
Sir Robert Black GCMG OBE
Miss Joan Woodgate CBE RRC
Admiral Sir Frank Twiss KCB KCVO DSC
The Lord Wallace of Coslany
Air Chief Marshall Sir John Barraclough KCB CBE DFC AFC
Sir Edward Goschen Bt DSO

Mr A.K. Pallot CMG (Director-General)

Mr Peter A. Scott BSc FICE (Honorary Consulting Engineer)

There were also present:
Mr A.S. Laing MVO (Assistant Secretary, Deputy Director-General)
Mr P.R. Matthew (Assistant Secretary, Assistant Director-General (Operations))
Mr J. Saynor (Assistant Secretary, Assistant Director-General (Administration))
Mr I.E. Morgan (Legal Adviser and Solicitor)
Mr W.H. Dukes OBE (Director of Works)
Mr J.B. Paton (Director of Horticulture)
Mr P.H.M. Swan (Director of External Relations)
Mr H. Westland (Establishment Officer)
Mr W.J. Symons (Chief Finance Officer)
Mr G.A. Cheater (Director of Information Services)
Mr D. Kennedy (Director, Outer Area)
Mr J.P. Gee (Secretariat)
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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