Arrondissement de Tournai
|Cemetery notes and/or description:|
Visiting Information: The cemetery is open from 08.00 to 17.45 each day, including Saturday and Sunday. Wheelchair access possible via main entrance. For further information regarding wheelchair access, please contact our Enquiries Department on telephone number: 01628 634221
Location Information: Tournai Communal Cemetery is located in the south west district of Tournai itself on the N508, Chaussee De Douai, a road leading from the R52 Tournai ring road. 900 metres after leaving the R523 and joining the N508, lies the left hand turning onto the Chaussee de Willemeau, and the cemetery is along this road on the right, fronted by large iron gates.
Historical Information: Tournai was captured by the German II Corps on 23 August 1914, in spite of resistance from a French Territorial Brigade, and the town remained in German hands until it was entered by the 47th (London) and 74th (Yeomanry) Divisions on 8 November 1918. The 51st (or Highland) Casualty Clearing Station arrived on 14 November and remained until 20 July 1919; during the occupation, the German sick and wounded had been nursed in the "Asile", the Allied in the Hopital Notre-Dame. The (Southern) Communal Cemetery, in the Faubourg-St. Martin, was used and extended by the Germans, although the graves were later regrouped by nationality and some were brought in from other cemeteries in a wide area around Tournai. The Allied extension now contains 689 Commonwealth burials of the First World War, 34 of them unidentified. There are also 117 Russian burials, all of men who died as prisoners of war, and two Belgian war graves. Almost all of the 52 Second World War burials in the extension date from May 1940 and the withdrawal of the British Expeditionary Force ahead of the German advance.
No. of Identified Casualties: 818. This figure includes Foreign.