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Albert Communal Cemetery Extension

Gazetteer No. G0656


Address Albert, Somme France


The cemetery lies to the southeast of the town of Albert at the fork of roads to Peronne and Bray-sur-Somme. The extension of the municipal graveyard was used by battle units and field ambulances, and later by a Casualty Clearing Station.

The cemetery lies along the road on one side, while the other three sides border on the municipal graveyard. In spite of the size, there is no War Stone. The cemetery consists of two parts, a higher and a lower part. The higher part lies along the road, is triangular in shape and is enclosed by a low wall. The entrance is formed by a large plateau with a pergola. The second part is lower and rectangular, and surrounded by a hedge. It is accessible by way of a stairway in the corner of the part the furthest removed from the entrance. A semicircular bench has been incorporated in the third corner of the first part.

The pergola is a recurring theme in the gardens designed by Lutyens and garden architect Jekyll. A fine example is Hestercombe Garden. The pergola returns in various cemeteries, for that matter, particularly in the Somme region, as in Bagneux British Cemetery, Douchy- Les-Ayette British Cemetery, Achiet-Le-Grand Communal Cemetery Extension and in Warlincourt Halte British Cemetery. What is unusual in Albert is that double porches have been included in the design. In his garden design, Lutyens used triangular oak beams. This way he could saw several triangular beams out of one rectangular timber, with the added advantage that water would run off. How- ever, the beams in the cemeteries are of stone and the slats of reinforced concrete.

The cemetery lies a little higher than the road. The entrance plateau is one step higher than the first part, and four posts with chains, forming two gates, have been incorporated as a boundary separating it from the road. The second part lies five steps lower than the first part. The truncated lime trees on the side of the road have recently been replaced by trained limes. There are scattered birches in the field of the second part. The pergola is covered with wisteria. Sir Frederic Kenyon, who ultimately had to give his approval to the design, had envisaged a shelter here instead of a pergola. (Geurst, 2010, p.196)


Geurst, J. (2010) Cemeteries of the Great War by Sir Edwin Lutyens. Rotterdam: 010 Publishers.

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Imperial War Graves Commission