Hamburg Cemetery

Hamburg2Hamburg Cemetery

This weekend, Karen and Thomas from Lüneburg in northern Germany have very kindly made a special trip to Hamburg Ohlsdorf Cemetery to take a photo of the grave of Private William Warman, the stretcher-bearer from Alston Road. (see the post ‘Distinguished Conduct’ in the December archive) From what we know to date, he is the only one of the Summerstown 182 whose final resting place is in Germany. Ohlsdorf is enormous, the largest non-military cemetery in the world. During the First World War, it was used for the burial of over 300 Allied servicemen who like William Warman, died as prisoners of war. In 1923 it was decided that the graves of Commonwealth servicemen who had died all over Germany should be gathered together in four permanent cemeteries. Hamburg was one of those chosen, and burials were brought into the cemetery from 120 other burial grounds. The majority died as prisoners, but a few were sailors whose bodies were washed ashore. There are now 708 First World War servicemen buried or commemorated there. Karen told me that the day they visited was the only day with blue sky and sun in a week of rainy grey days.

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