Orchard Dump
Webmatters : La Chaudière Military Cemetery
Rough Map of Area

La Chaudière Military Cemetery


La Chaudière Military Cemetery is approximately 3 kilometres south of Lens and is situated on the north-western outskirts of Vimy.

The road system has completely changed with the N17 now skirting around Vimy. Coming from Arras/Memorial take the old road towards Vimy village. At the roundabout on the far side turn left and then right. The cemetery will be on your left.

Decimal50.384792.80333 Map
La Chaudière Military Cemetery

Historical Information

Vimy Ridge was taken by the Canadian Corps in April 1917 in the Battle of Vimy Ridge, although the 25th and 47th (London) Divisions had also been involved in heavy fighting there in May 1916.

Looking towards Vimy Ridge

Looking towards Vimy Ridge

The cemetery was made at the foot of the ridge, on the north-eastern side, next to a house which had contained a camouflaged German gun position.

It remained very small until the summer of 1919, when graves were brought in from many other small cemeteries and isolated sites (some of these from the 1916 fighting) on or near the ridge.

At this time, the cemetery was known as Vimy Canadian Cemetery No 1.

The Vimy Memorial

There are now 907 servicemen of the First World War buried or commemorated in this cemetery. 314 of the burials are unidentified but there are special memorials to a number of casualties known to be buried among them. Other special memorials commemorate men whose graves in some of the concentrated cemeteries had been destroyed in subsequent fighting.

The cemetery was designed by Sir Herbert Baker.

Fallen leaves

Fallen leaves

John Pattison VC

808887 Private John Pattison VC
50th Bn Canadian Infantry
Alberta Regiment
Died on 3rd June 1917 aged 42
Son of Harry and Mary Pattison
Husband of Mrs S Pattison, of Suite 12, Curtis Block, Calgary, Alberta.
Native of New Cross, England

The London Gazette No 30215
Dated 31st July 1917

For most conspicuous bravery in attack. When the advance of our troops was held up by an enemy machine gun, which was inflicting severe casualties, Private Pattison, with utter disregard of his own safety, sprang forward and, jumping from shell-hole to shell-hole, reached cover within thirty yards of the enemy gun. From this point, in face of heavy fire, he hurled bombs, killing and wounding some of the crew, then rushed forward overcoming and bayoneting the surviving five gunners.

His valour and initiative undoubtedly saved the situation and made possible the further advance to the objective.

Grave: VI C 14

Private John Brookes

Private John Brookes 477109
Royal Canadian Regiment
Died on 9th April 1917 aged 25
Son of Edwin and Emma Brookes, of 25 Talfourd St, Small Heath, Birmingham, England

Grave: VII B 13

Just before the battle Brookes had left his name inscribed on the wall of the church at Ecoivres near Mont St Eloi, which is the ruined abbey with its two towers you can see on a hill in the distance from the Vimy Memorial.

Lance Corporal Roderick Bird

Lance Corporal Roderick Bird 443908
54th Bn Canadian Infantry
Central Ontario Regiment
Died on 1st March 1917 aged 17
Son of Francis and Kathleen Bird,
of Orchard Farm, Penticton, British Columbia.
Native of Ketton, Rutland, England

When he signed up on 5th September 1915 he gave his birthday as the 18th April 1897. He stated that he was already a serving member of the militia. The British Census of 1901 lists him as being 1 years old. He was thus, just 15.

He is commemorated on the Bank of Hamilton Memorial, Hamilton, Ontario. He was one of their clerks before joining the army.

Special Memorial A 7

Private Arthur Lake

Private Arthur Lake 1033223
Royal Canadian Regiment
Died on 9th April 1917 aged 17
Son of Agnes Roberts (formerly Lake),
of 38 Nichols St, Lewiston, Maine, USA
and the late Arthur Lake
Was living at the time in St John, New Brunswick, Canada.

Grave: VIII E 3

Private Clifford Pask

Private Clifford Pask 455259
Royal Canadian Regiment
Died on 9th April 1917 aged 17
Son of Harry and Margaret Pask,
of 33 Apple St, Brockville, Ontario

Grave: X B 1

Private Cecil Simpson

Private Cecil Simpson 419142
42nd Bn Canadian Infantry
Québec Regiment
Died on 14th April 1917 aged 17
Foster son of Laura Fruin, of 32 Guildford Rd
Canterbury, Kent, England.
Native of Holloway, London, England

On signing up on 7th January 1915 he gave his NOK as John Broom of Norval, Ontario. He also stated that he had been born in Norfolk, England.

Grave: I C 9