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Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Visitor Centre
The CWGC Visitor Centre: Meet the Artisans of Memory

Behind the Necropolis of Notre-Dame-de-Lorette, in the shadow of the Roclincourt Military Cemetery, stands an organization that works for History. In the Hauts-de-France, in Beaurains, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) brings together the craftsmen working to maintain the Memory.

Builders, carpenters, blacksmiths, gardeners, engineers…These men and women of the shadows open the doors of their workshops, for a visit as unique as it is fascinating. That’s what the CWGC Visitor Centre is all about!

From the First World War...

When the First World War broke out in September 1914, Fabien Ware was mobilized to lead a mobile British Red Cross unit. As the fighting raged across Europe, the number of lifeless and unidentified bodies was in the thousands. Stricken by all these anonymous losses, Fabien Ware decides to create, within the Red Cross, the Graves Registration Commission.

Photographs, identifications, burials … The Graves Registration Commission offers soldiers and families of the dead the rest they deserve after the tragedies of the Great War. In tribute to these men who fell in the name of the Crown, the organization, which is now under the aegis of the Prince of Wales, becomes the Imperial War Graves Commission.

But as the Second World War takes its toll, it is the whole world that takes up arms. Alongside the British, Canadians, Australians and other Commonwealth nations once again pledged themselves to peace. In honor of those who bore arms to freedom during these great wars, coming from all walks of life under the British flag, the organization takes the name Commonwealth War Graves Commission. our days

For more than 100 years, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission has been working around the world to commemorate the British victims of the two world wars. Recovery, burial, maintenance…This collective of artisans, based in Beaurains in the Hauts-de-France region, reveals the behind-the-scenes of Remembrance: tombstones, monuments and memorials…

Both cultural and artisanal, the CWGC Visitor Centre offers a fresh look at post-war Remembrance. Here, visitors can observe these artisans at the service of a passion, a desire to pass on and honor the soldiers killed in the First and Second World Wars. A visit worthy of the immense work of memory that stems from this place.

The CWGC Visitor Centre in Beaurains:

Our practical information for your visit

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission or CWGC Visitor Centre is open to you, free of charge, Monday through Friday. The CWGC Visitor Centre closes on weekends and holidays, as well as during the months of December and January.

Address and contact

5 – 7 rue Angèle Richard, Beaurains

Tel +33 (0)3 21 21 52 75

Opening periods

Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.,

Saturdays and Sundays on theme days.

Tours are guided and audio-guided.