Dud Corner Cemetery and Loos Memorial
Information from the website of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission:
Loos-en-Gohelle is a village 5 kilometres north-west of Lens. Dud Corner Cemetery is located about 1 kilometre west of the village, to the north-east of the D943 the main Lens to Bethune road. The Loos Memorial forms the side and back of Dud Corner Cemetery and commemorates over 20,000 officers and men who have no known grave, who fell in the area from the River Lys to the old southern boundary of the First Army, east and west of Grenay.
The name “Dud Corner” is believed to be due to the large number of unexploded enemy shells found in the neighbourhood after the Armistice. The only burials here during hostilities were those of four Officers of the 9th Black Watch and one Private of the 8th Royal Dublin Fusiliers, close to Plot III, Row B; the remainder of the graves were brought in later from isolated positions near Loos and to the North, and from certain small cemeteries, including:
– TOSH CEMETERY, LOOS, was on the North side of the village, close to the communication trench called Tosh Alley. It contained the graves of 171 soldiers from the United Kingdom (118 of whom were Irish) and five from Canada. It was used from October 1915 to September 1917.
– CRUCIFIX CEMETERY, LOOS, was a little West of Tosh Cemetery. It was used from September 1915 to May 1916, and it contained the graves of 53 soldiers from the United Kingdom.
– LE RUTOIRE BRITISH CEMETERY, VERMELLES, was close to Le Rutoire Farm, which is on Loos Plain, near the village of Vermelles. It was used in 1915, and contained the graves of 82 soldiers from the United Kingdom and six French soldiers.
There are now nearly 2,000, 1914-18 war casualties commemorated in this site. Of these, over half are unidentified and special headstones have been erected to 15 soldiers from the United Kingdom who are believed to be buried among them. The great majority of the dead buried here fell in the Battle of Loos 1915; but some were killed in succeeding years. Originally, the regimental memorials for the following units were brought into the cemetery:
– 10th Scottish Rifles and the 17th London Regiment, dating from the Battle of Loos, and those of the Royal Montreal Regiment and the Royal Highlanders of Canada, dating from the Battle of Hill 70 in August 1917. These memorials were later removed.
– Special memorials are erected in this Cemetery to twelve soldiers of the 2nd Welch Regiment, killed in action on the 12th October 1915, and originally buried in Crucifix Cemetery, Loos, whose graves could not be found on concentration.
The cemetery now covers an area of 5,550 square metres, and is bounded by a low rubble wall except on the road side, where the War Stone is raised on a grass terrace and flanked by buildings.