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The cemetery was begun in readiness for British offensives in the Salient in 1917. It was located next to a Dressing Station and was in use from June 1917 to December 1917. Of the graves, 148 are men from the Guards or the Guards Machine Gun Regiments. Two graves were added after the Armistice and the French graves were removed. There are nine World War Two graves. Elverdinge village was a major centre for British railways, hospitals, supply depots and camps, and a light railway ran along the road from the village to the front line. Elverdinge Chateau, until it was accidentally burnt down by British cooks, was a headquarters used by several units.

Cemetery Location

The cemetery is located to the west of the village of Elverdinge, north of Ieper, on the Elverdinge – Boezinge Road. It is next to the farm where the Dressing Station was located.

Shot at Dawn

There are three graves of men who were court martialled for offences committed during Third Ypres. They are:

1533 Private Thomas Hawkins, Grave II.B.12 7th Battalion Queen’s (Royal West Surrey Regiment), 55th Brigade, 18th (Eastern) Division. On the 12 June 1917, he was tried for cowardice as a result of his conduct during the Messines offensive. He was already under a suspended sentence of death. On his charge of cowardice, some three months after his court martial he was sentenced to two years with hard labour and this was suspended. On October 12 1917, his battalion was involved in action during the Battle of Passchendaele and he deserted. He was caught and this time the court was not lenient and he was shot at dawn on 22 November 1917.

11661 Private Arthur H Westwood, Age 20, Grave II.B.13 Son of William and Ellen Westwood, of 27A Leagrave Road., Fulham, London. 8th Battalion East Surreys, 55th Brigade, 18th (Eastern) Division. He had already been sentenced to 90 days field punishment for desertion earlier in 1917 when he deserted again during the Battle of Poelcappelle. At his trial on 27 October he gave no defence and he was shot at dawn on 23 November 1917.


322497 Private Frederick William Slade, Age 24, Grave II.B.33 Son of Mrs. Kate A. Slade, of 69 Manor Lane, Lee, London. 2/6th (2nd City of London Rifles) Londons, 174th Brigade, 58th (2/1st London) Division. He was serving as a stretcher bearer and had been on the Western Front since early 1917. In August 1917 he was sentenced to 90 days field punishment for disobeying orders. On 26 October, during the Battle of Passchendaele, the battalion was moving up the line when he refused to parade prior to moving off. Despite the efforts of his sergeant and the battalion adjutant he continued to refuse to obey orders. He was arrested and at his court martial on 14 November he explained that the horrors of the past year had affected his mind. An RAMC officer gave evidence that Frederick was not mentally unfit. He was shot at dawn on 14 December 1917 for disobedience.

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