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Webmatters : Nine Elms British Cemetery, Poperinge

Nine Elms British Cemetery


Nine Elms British Cemetery is located west of Poperinge on the Helleketelweg, a road leading from the N33 Poperinge ring road. From Ieper follow the signs to Poperinge. At the traffic lights at the end of the expressway turn left onto the Poperinge ring road, the Europalaan. Follow the ring road to the roundabout and take the second exit. At the next roundabout take the second exit, follow the ring road and take the first turning on the left, the Helleketelweg. The cemetery is along here on the left.

Nine Elms British Cemetery


Historical Information

The cemetery was begun and used by the 3rd Australian and 44th Casualty Clearing Stations when they moved to Poperinghe (now Poperinge), from Brandhoek and Lijssenthoek respectively, in September 1917.

Nearly all the burials in Plots I to IX came from these Casualty Clearing Stations, whilst they operated in this area during the 1917 Battle of Ypres, up until December 1917.

Nine Elms British Cemetery

Plots X, XI, XIII, XIV and XV cover the dates between the beginning of March 1918 and the 12th October 1918, the period of the German offensive in Flanders, the British counter attacks and the final advance of August-September.

The burials in these cases were carried out almost entirely by fighting units. The cemetery contains 1,556 Commonwealth burials of the First World War and 37 German war graves from this period.

There are also 22 Second World War burials in the cemetery, all dating from the Allied retreat to Dunkirk in 1940.

The cemetery was designed by Sir Reginald Blomfield.


Gunner Alexander Dunbar

Gunner Alexander Dunbar 307756
8th Brigade
Canadian Field Artillery
Died on 5th November 1917 aged 26
Son of George and Jennie Dunbar
of Guelph, Ontario

Grave: VII D 16

Captain Harold Hanson

Captain Harold Hanson
1st/4th Bn Duke of Wellington’s
West Riding Regiment
Died on 1st December 1917 aged 36
Son of John and Annie Hanson
of Daisy Lea, Lindley, Huddersfield

Grave: XIII A 1

Lt Colonel Alexander Tillett

Lt Colonel Alexander Tillett
2nd Bn Devonshire Regiment
Died on 3rd December 1917

Grave: XIII A 3

Lieutenant Stannus Geoghegan

Lieutenant Stannus Geoghegan
2nd Bn Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders
Died on 17th March 1918 aged 19
Son of Lt.-Col. S. Geoghegan, C.B. (Indian Army)
and Mrs. Norah Geoghegan
Born Naina Tal, India

Grave: XIII A 11


Private John McFarlane

Private John McFarlane 265427
4th Bn The King’s
Liverpool Regiment
Died on 22nd May 1918 aged 27
Son of William and Margaret McFarlane
of 14, Gerard Street, Byrom Street, Liverpool

Grave: XI A 2

Shot at Dawn for desertion

A pre-war Territorial soldier who had been serving on the Western Front for three years McFarlane evidently decided that he had had enough and deserted the lines.

Private Joseph Nisbet

Private Joseph Nisbet 11682
1st Bn Leicestershire
Died on 23 August 1918

Grave: XV C 21

Shot at Dawn for desertion

Nisbet had volunteered in 1914 but then accrued a poor reputation with charges of violence and disobedience. The latter charge had resulted in a suspended death sentence. When he was warned for the front Nisbet went sick. Instead of attending the sick parade (which may have found nothing wrong with him) he took himself off and managed to reach Calais.

He was arrested and brought for trial. With a suspended sentence already on his record Nisbet was not going to escape again.


Other cemeteries in the area

Recent Additions

Brimont Churchyard

Braine Communal Cemetery

Soupir Churchyard

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