Tyne Cot Cemetery, Ieper
The largest military cemetery in the world with 12,000 gravestones and the 35,000 names of soldiers whose remains were never found inscribed in the circling wll of the cemetery.
Some graves looked as though newly created and our guide explained that these killing fields still continue to yield up the lost.
All human remains discovered are sent to a centre in Scotland for identifcation, using the most up to date modern technology, before they are returned for a proper burial - sometimes with family representatives present.
We arrived early at the cemetery and met, on their way out, a large group of young, teenage, cadets from Britain whose bus stood waiting for them. They stood quietly to one side to let us through.
I don't think I have ever seen such saddened, solemn faces on a group of young people.
Their visible reaction to the visit says all there is to say.
If you are with a car it's easier to get here, Tynecot is outside town of Zonnebeke on the road to Passendale or you can also arrange a day tour from Ypres. Public transport is very easy if you are familiar by public buses, bus from Ypres has a route to Tyne Cot cemetery,
HOW TO GET HERE BY BUS:
Take a bus (de lijn bus) from Ypres market or at the train station. Bus number "94" direction "Passendale- Roeselare"
If you tell the driver before he will drop you off at the bus stop. From the stops you will see already the sign board to Tynecot. Follow the sign is only 600 meters walk way from the main road
Be aware that buses are not frequent! there's only 1 buses in an hour to this route"
Even with a car you might miss the small road where you drive in, the sign board to the site is not very clear so a lot of people drive through it. If you use GPS type the exactly address for sure he will take you there
This is the largest British military cemetery on the European continent, this impressive cemetery contains nearly 12,000 headstones, the rear of Tyne Cot consists of a wall with 35,000 names of missing soldiers and is the sequel to the Menin Gate in Ypres
All traffic is now concentrated among the great job Passchendaele Broodseinde and the back of the cemetery, where a new parking lot for 7 buses and 25 cars were built, to enhance the amenity of the cemetery was also repaired the road at the front in its original condition
A long the wall you end up in a small visitor center, where the history and significance of the cemetery central, in the visitor center you will learn all about the architecture of the cemetery, the tombstones, the Kipling Memorials, the German bunkers, the special wall and the gate, the Stone of Remembrance, the Cross of Sacrifice and the Tyne Cot Memorial
The Cemetery is lying down in an open area, what you see is the farm land around, is a "MUST" to see when visiting the region of West Flanders or if you are in Ypres
Several kilometres outside Ypres but this massive cemetery is a 'must visit' if you are interested in the Great War. It is the largest Commonwealth War Graves cemetery in the world and has almost 12,000 soldiers buried here. It was opened in 1927 on the site of a much smaller ad-hoc cemetery. The architecture is impressive, a vast arc'ing wall surrounds one end of the cemetery, listing 35,000 men who went missing. There is also an impressive stepped memorial cross which most people delight in climbing for the view.
There are some distinguished medal holders buried here. On the other hand, I sneaked off to find the grave of Second Lieutenant Arthur Conway Young, not far in front of the memorial cross. His parents were professional diplomats and aethiests. His stone has no cross on it and the message reads "Sacrificed to the fallacy that war can end war". My military minded companions headed in another direction, needless to say!
If you have only time to visit one of the cemeteries around Ypres this is certainly the one I would advise.
First, from the ridge on which is located the cemetery the visitor has an extended view on what was the most important part of the Ypres Salient to the north-east with the villages of Zonnebeke and Passendale. From the cemetery one sees in the distance the town of Ieper/Ypres. The visitors centre at the back of the cemetery shows maps of the third battle of Ypres which happened right here.
Second reason is certainly that Tyne Cot is the largest Commonwealth war cemetery in the world with 12.000 graves. It is a beautiful one showing the typical Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) cemetery layouts, architectural structures and horticultural environment. The cemetery was designed by Sir Herbert Baker.
The visitor will find here the Cross of Sacrifice, a simple cross embedded with a bronze sword and mounted on an octagonal base, designed by the architect Reginald Blomfield to represent the faith of the majority and the Stone of Remembrance, designed by architect Edwin Lutyens to commemorate those of all faiths and none. The uniform graves and headstones are those decided by the GWGC (see my specific tip).
Most graves are British, Australian, Canadian and from New-Zealand but 70% of the burials are of unknown soldiers. The fighting was intense here; there are 4 bunkers left, one is at the base of the Cross of Sacrifice.
At the back stands the Tyne Cot Memorial which forms the far wall of the cemetery and commemorates those with no known grave from 16th August 1917 on. There are 34.870 names engraved arranged by regiment and rank. The 54.896 names of the soldiers reported missing from before 16th August 1917 are engraved on the walls of the Menin Gate in the centre of Ieper.
There is a small entry near the visitors centre leading directly to the parking for buses and cars (pay toilets according to Wandel JP). The main entry is on the down side of the cemetery.
There are about 200.000 visitors/year.
Things To Do: Tyne Cot Cemetery
This is the largest British Commonwealth war cemetery in the world, every year some 180,000 visitors come to the 11,954 graves, of which 8,367 are unnamed and the Memorial to the missing, a semi-circular wall inscribed with the names of a further 35,000 men whose bodies were never recovered. The dates of death of the soldiers buried at Tyne Cot cemetery cover a period of four years, from October 1914 to September 1918 inclusive. The name "Tyne Cot" is believed to come from the Northumberland Fusiliers who saw a resemblance between the German concrete pill boxes, which still stand in the middle of the cemetery, and typical Tyneside workers' cottages referred to as “Tyne Cots”.
Tuesday to Friday: 11:00 am to 4:00 pm
Saturday to Sunday: 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm
The Third Battle of Ypres had the village of Passchendaele as its target.
The mud was so deep that men and horses drowned.
General Haig said: 'Good God, did we send men to fight in that?'.
Yes. They did.
Lions led by donkeys.
Go if you can, take an organised tour if you know little or nothing of what happened.
Tyne Cot has a new visitors' centre, which brings you closer to the reality. These were real people.
I have made a separate VT page on Tyne Cot.
And a page about the First World War in Flanders
Tyne Cot cemetery is the largest cemetery of the Commonwealth in the world. On the memorial wall for missing soldiers, they have engraved 35.000 names. There are also 12.000 graves of soldiers from World War I. The cemetery is well maintained. Around the gravestones you find many plants and flowers.
Although this huge graveyard is a little way from Ieper it really should be visited.
The Cemetery is located 9 kilometres north east of Ieper town centre, on the Tynecotstraat, a road off the Zonnebeekseweg (N332). There is also a visitors centre there with things that belonged to the soldiers buried here. What i thought so moving was that the names and ages of the soldiers were read out through speakers as you walked to the visitors centre - it somehow inpressed on you that they were real people and just how young most of them were. My grandfather fought and was injured in the Somme and this place helped me think of his life during the war years.
Tyne Cot cemetery, the largest British commonwealth cemetery in the world with almost 12,000 soldiers buried there, was a sobering and humbling experience for me. Row after row after row of simple white tombstones of British, Canadian, Australian men who died well before their time.
The name comes from the Northumberland infantrymen who tried to take the ridge here who thought that the German bunkers looked like Tyneside cottages. The white Cross of Sacrifice was built over one of these bunkers, you can still see a small square of one of the bunkers there.
At the rear of the cemetery is a semicircular wall that has the names of almost 35,000 soldiers who have no known grave and didn't fit on the Menin Gate which has another 55,000 names inscribed on it.
If driving, the cemetery is fairly well marked by signs, we didn't need a map to locate it.
Tyne Cot is the largest Commonwealth Cemetery in Flanders. There were originally over 1000 cemeteries in the area and they were consolidated. It is a beautiful, moving memorial to those who lost their lives. Several bunkers were left and integrated into the design of the cemetery. There are over 11,000 graves here.
Tyne Cot Cemetery is the largest British War cemetery anywhere in the world. The outer walls are 168m long and are made from flint stones from the UK and Italy.
It takes its name from the nickname given to the pillboxes in the area, and is attributed to the Northumberland troops that thought they looked like cottages from their native NE of England.
The cemetery contains the graves of over 11000 soldiers from Britain and the Commonwealth plus 4 German soldiers.
The central area with the cross is actually built over a German concrete bunker, which is still visible through some holes in the build.
The walls in the background are engraved with the names of soldiers that have no known grave, and is the overspill from the Menin Gate in the Ypres/Ieper city centre.
Tyne Cot CWGC Cemetary isn't actually in the city of Ieper but rather in Passendale, one of the suburbs.
Originally this battlefield cemetery had only 343 graves but it was enlarged after Armistice. It is now the largest Commonwealth war cemetery in the world in terms of burials, about 12000.
Tyne Cot Memorial is in the background. On Tyne Cot Memorial there are about 35000 names of soldiers whose graves are not known and who died between August 1917 and the end of the war.
Tyne Cot is the largest British military cemetery on the continent. Here 11956 Commonwealth soldiers were buried. On the memorial one can read 34957 names of missing soldiers. During the 3rd battle of Ypres, from July 31 to November 1917, more than 500.000 British and German soldiers were killed.
The Tyne Cot Memorial is one of the four memorials to the missing soldiers of the First World war. Even if you are the toughest guy on earth, silence is coming over you if you see all those names of men who fought for freedom.
Tyne Cot is the biggest military cemetery on the continent. The name Tyne Cot refers to the Tyne, a river in the north east of England, and cot is an abbreviation of cottage, because during the war there was a small barn standing here.