Artillery Wood

Location

Boezinge is located north of the town of Ieper on the N369 road in the direction of Diksmuide. The Cemetery is located in the Poezelstraat, east of the village. From the station turn left along the Diksmuidseweg then take the second turning right into Brugstraat. Go to the end of Brugstraat, over the bridge, and straight on along Molenstraat. Poezelstraat is the second turning on the right after the bridge and the cemetery is on the right hand side, about 200 metres from the junction of Molenstraat.

Artillery Wood Cemetery

Historical Information

Until July 1917, the village of Boesinghe (now Boezinge) directly faced the German front line over the Yser canal, but at the end of that month, the Battle of Pilckem Ridge pushed the German line back and Artillery Wood, just east of the canal, was captured by the Guards Division.

They began the cemetery just north of the wood when the fighting was over and it continued as a front line cemetery until March 1918.

At the time of the Armistice, the cemetery contained 141 graves, but it was then greatly enlarged when graves were brought in from the battlefields and small burial grounds around Boesinghe.

There are now 1 307 First World War casualties buried or commemorated in this cemetery. 506 of the burials are unidentified but special memorials commemorate 12 casualties known or believed to be buried among them.

The cemetery was designed by Sir Reginald Blomfield.

 

Two War Poets

Francis Edward Ledwidge

Lance Corporal Francis Edward Ledwidge 16138
1st Bn Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers
Died on 31st July 1917 aged 29
Son of Patrick and Anne Ledwidge, of Slane, Co. Meath

A prolific poet noted for his pastoral pieces about Ireland; his last poems made subtle reference to war.

He had already served in Gallipoli and Salonika with the 5th Bn of the Inniskillings before returning to France with the 1st Bn in December 1916.

Grave: II B 5

Ellis Humphrey Evans

Private Ellis Humphrey Evans 61117
15th Bn Royal Welsh Fusiliers
Died on 31st July 1917 aged 30
Son of Evan and Mary Evans, of Trawsfynydd, Merioneth

Evans wrote poetry under the name 'Hedd Wyn'.

Writing in Welsh he had made a name for himself before joining up. A poem called Yr Arwr (The Hero) won him another prize (This time posthumously) at the 1917 Eisteddfod.

Grave: II F 11

 

Edward Ledwidge Memorial

Edward Ledwidge Memorial Edward Ledwidge Memorial

This monument is a short distance from the cemetery.

It marks the spot where the poet was killed in July 1917.

The plaque contains his poem Soliloquy.

 

If you leave the cemetery by turning right and down to the crossroads you will find the Breton Gas Memorial commemorating the first gas attack in 1915.

Carrefour des roses Carrefour des roses