The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) will be opening its doors this September with special tours of their war graves at Stonefall Cemetery as part of the Heritage Open Days Scheme.
As part of the scheme, CWGC is opening its doors to cemeteries and memorials across England, including Harrogate, giving the public guided tours of its sites. Free guided tours will take place on the 11th, 15th, 18th and 19th September at Stonefall Cemetery and will give people the chance to reconnect with their history and discover the remarkable stories of the men and women who are buried in their community.
During the Second World War almost 1,000 servicemen and women were buried at Stonefall Cemetery. Around 900 served with the flying services and were laid to rest here in a large Air Forces plot which was established in 1943.
The men and women buried at Stonefall came from across the Commonwealth. Today, you will find over 600 Canadian and almost 100 Australian service personnel at rest here alongside casualties from New Zealand, Fiji and the Caribbean.
During the tour, the public will be able to learn stories of some of the casualties buried at Stonefall including the brothers serving in the Royal Canadian Air Force who died just a few months apart. They will also learn how local people ‘adopted’ the war graves of the fallen from across the Commonwealth and laid wreaths on their graves on behalf of the families abroad.
Liz Woodfield, Director of Information and Communications for the CWGC said:
In the UK alone, there are more than 12,500 war grave sites maintained by CWGC, and every single one contains a human story worth connecting with. Heritage Open Days provides the perfect opportunity for the public to discover these remarkable stories and explore the world war heritage on their doorstep.
To book your ticket please visit: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/cwgc-tours-stonefall-cemetery-harrogate-tickets-164094676595