The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) will be opening the doors of Harrogate Stonefall Cemetery to offer free tours and demonstrations as part of the Heritage Open Days Scheme.
People attending the heritage days will learn about the history of the CWGC who commemorate the 1.7 million Commonwealth men and women who lost their lives during both world wars. Tours will discuss the remarkable stories of the men and women of the Commonwealth forces who are buried in Harrogate (Stonefall) Cemetery.
Visitors will learn how CWGC staff, supporters and local volunteers preserve the unique cultural, horticultural and architectural heritage and ensure that the stories of those who died are told. On Thursday 15th September, members of the public will be invited to try their hand at stone engraving and will learn the importance of headstone maintenance as well as hearing from our horticultural experts.
The Heritage Day Tours will take place on the 10th, 15th, 17th and 18th September at Stonefall Cemetery.
More than 1 000 casualties from both world wars are buried at Stonefall Cemetery.
The commission will be telling some new stories this year as part of the Heritage Open Days’ theme ‘Astounding Inventions’. These include the story of Dorothy Robson also known as ‘Bomb Sight Bertha’, the engineer who was instrumental in the development of the bomb sight on bombers and Flight Lieutenant Vincent Parker who was known as the ‘Locksmith of Colditz’.
Director of External Relations at the CWGC, Liz Woodfield, said:
Everyone in Harrogate is very welcome to attend the Heritage Open Days at Stonefall Cemetery. They’re a great opportunity to learn how the CWGC honours and cares for the men and women of the Commonwealth who died in the First and Second World Wars, ensuring they will never be forgotten.
There’ll be plenty going on from fascinating tours and talks to interactive activities such as stone engraving. Visitors will also learn how the CWGC is becoming more sustainable and is playing its part in tackling the key environmental concerns of our time.
The CWGC honours and cares for the men and women of the Commonwealth forces who died in the First and Second World Wars, ensuring they will never be forgotten. Funded by six Member Governments, its work began with building, and now maintaining, cemeteries at 23,000 locations all over the world.
To book a free tour, visit www.cwgc.org/opendays