The ceremony at Prowse Point Military Cemetery, near Ploegsteert (Photo: Commonwealth War Graves Commission)

Six British First World War soldiers reburied in Belgium

Posted on on 17 April 2015
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Six British soldiers who died in the opening weeks of the First World War in 1914 have been reburied with full military honours in Belgium.

Their coffins, draped in the Union flag and bearing poppy wreaths, were borne into Prowse Point cemetery, near Ploegsteert, by serving British soldiers.

A volley was fired in tribute to the men, whose identities remain unknown.

Members of the public joined the ceremony on April 16th 2015, including a party of New Zealand schoolchildren visiting the battlefields of the Great War.

The UK Ambassador to Belgium, Alison Rose, gave a reading from the Revelation of John.

(Photo: courtesy of CWGC)

The soldiers were killed in October 1914, at a time when the battles known as the 'Race to the Sea' were drawing to a close on the last open flank of the Western Front.

Their remains were found in 2008 and 2010 in a farmer's field in the Comines-Warneton area of Belgium, close to the French border. It's thought they were given field burials after the action in which they died.

Despite research, it's not been possible to name them.

However, two of the soldiers served with the King's Own Lancaster Regiment and two with the Lancashire Fusiliers. The regiment of the other two men is still unknown.

More than 100 years later, troops from 1st Battalion The Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment and 1st Battalion The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers carried their forebears to their lasting resting place at Prowse Point.

The cemetery, 11 kilometres (7 miles) south of Ypres, is cared for by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. It lies next to the new Christmas truce memorial unveiled in December 2014.

Information & images from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission; UK Ministry of Defence

Posted by: Peter Alhadeff, Centenary News