Webmatters Title
Webmatters : Oosttaverne Wood Cemetery, Wijtschate
Rough Map of Area

Oosttaverne Wood Cemetery


Oosttaverne Wood Cemetery is located six kilometres south of Ieper town centre on the Rijselseweg N336 connecting Ieper to Lille (Rijsel in Dutch).

From Ieper town centre the Rijselstraat runs from the market square, through the Lille Gate (Rijselpoort) and directly over the crossroads with the Ieper ring road. The road name then changes to the Rijselseweg. Three kilometres along the Rijselseweg the road forks with the N365. The N336 is the left hand fork towards Lille. The cemetery is located two kilometres after this left hand fork on the right hand side of the road.

GPS N E Wikimapia
Decimal 50.794002 2.902359 Map

Oosttaverne Wood Cemetery


Historical Information

The Oosttaverne Line was a German work running northward from the river Lys to the Comines Canal, passing just east of Oosttaverne. It was captured on 7th June 1917, the first day of the Battle of Messines, the village and the wood being taken by the 19th (Western) and 11th Divisions. Two cemeteries, No.1 and No.2, were then made by the IX Corps Burial Officer on the present site and used until September 1917. They are contained in Plot I, II, and III of the present cemetery, which was completed after the Armistice when graves were brought in from the surrounding battlefields (including many from Hill 60) and from the following smaller cemeteries :

  • Hoogemotte Farm German Cemetery, Wervicq, on the Belgian side of the Lys, towards Comines; a permanent cemetery, which contained, in addition to German graves, those of twelve soldiers from the United Kingdom who fell in April 1918.
  • Houthem-Les-Ypres German Cemetery, on the West side of the village; a permanent cemetery in which 17 soldiers and airmen from the United Kingdom were buried in 1916-17.
  • In De Ster German Cemetery, Becelaere, named from a cabaret on the road to Broodseinde; made by the XXVII Reserve Corps, and containing the graves of 53 soldiers from the United Kingdom who fell in October and November 1914.
  • Koekuit German Cemetery, Langemarck, on the road to Houthulst, in which eight soldiers from the United Kingdom were buried in October 1914.
  • Tenbrielen-Amerika German Cemetery, in the Haut-Bois, North of Comines, now containing about 850 graves. Six soldiers from the United Kingdom were buried here in April 1917.
  • Three Houses German Cemetery, Hollebeke (or Hollebeke Cemetery No. 60), on the Kortevilde-Verbrandenmolen road, across the canal; three soldiers from the United Kingdom and two from Canada were buried there in 1916.
  • Zwaanhoek German Cemetery, Becelaere, on the South side of the Molenhoek-Reutel road; made by the XXVII Reserve Corps, and containing the graves of six soldiers from the United Kingdom who fell in October 1914.
  • Croonaert Chapel was a shrine in a hamlet on the Wytschaete-Voormezeele road; and the cemetery is 160 yards West of that road, a mile North of Wytschaete village. It was in No Man’s Land before the Battle of Messines, 1917

During the Second World War, the British Expeditionary Force was involved in the later stages of the defence of Belgium following the German invasion in May 1940, and suffered many casualties in covering the withdrawal to Dunkirk.

The cemetery contains 1,119 First World War burials, 783 of which are unidentified. Scattered amongst these graves are 117 from the Second World War, five of them unidentified.

The cemetery was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens.

Oosttaverne Wood Cemetery


Private Charles Mackintosh

Private Charles Mackintosh 460218
15th Bn Canadian Infantry
48th Highlanders of Canada
Died on 3rd June 1916 aged 20
Son of John Mackintosh
of Front Street, Arnold, Nottingham, England

Grave: VI F 17

Private Alfred Mills

Private Alfred Mills 9876
1st Bn Gloucestershire Regiment
Died on 21st October 1914 aged 17
Son of A. W. Mills
of 22, Rutland St., Cheltenham

Grave: III E 3

Lance Corporal Ernest Linge

Lance Corporal Ernest Linge 3/5073
2nd Bn Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry
Died on 23rd April 1915 aged 17
Son of Mr. and Mrs. Linge
of 43, Selborne Rd., Wood Green, London

Grave: VII F 22

Lt Colonel Rule Wetherall

Lt Colonel Rule Wetherall
2nd Bn The Northamptonshire Regiment
Died on 28th May 1940 aged 39
Son of Henry and Rita Wetherall
Husband of Margaret Wetherall
of Moor Park, Surrey

Grave: II F 4

Fusilier Thomas Kerr

Fusilier Thomas Kerr 6980520
2nd Bn Royal Iniskilling Fusiliers
Died on 1st-4th June 1940 aged 29
Son of Hugh and Ellen Kerr
of Belfast, Northern Ireland
Husband of Margaret Kerr
of Belfast

Grave: V AA 2


Other cemeteries in the area

Recent Additions

Brimont Churchyard

Braine Communal Cemetery

Soupir Churchyard

CWGC Poppy Button