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Voormezeele Enclosure No 3

Gazetteer No. G0784


Address Voormezele, West-Vlaanderen Belgium


Enclosure No. 3 was the largest of the originally four Voormezeele Enclosures. Plots i to xii belong to the original cemetery. Plot iii was the first to be constructed, by a Canadian regiment. The other plots include graves from other regiments. Soldiers who had at first been buried in other smaller cemeteries and in solitary battlefield graves were interred in plots xiii to xvi after the war.

The cemetery lies near Voormezele village, at the corner of the high street and a side street. It is rectangular in shape and consists of two parts. The front part is the original cemetery used by various regiments. The rear part was con- structed after the war in systematic fashion. In spite of its size, it is a fairly austere cemetery without remarkable buildings. There is only a plain brick toolhouse. Nevertheless it is striking due to the monumental poplars that have been placed near the War Stone and the Cross of Sacrifice.

The cemetery is one step higher than the road but is otherwise practically level. It is surrounded by a low brick wall covered with slabs of natural stone. Right at the entrance, the wall surrounding the ground folds inward, as it were, dividing the entrance into two passages. Consequently the visitor cannot walk straight on, where a row of original graves would block the way. In front of the entrance there are two posts with chains, and a stoop as far as the road.

The War Stone has been placed on the southeast side and the graves face northeast or southwest. Those added after the war, however, face northeast. The cemetery has a principal axis in the linear direction of the field, from the entrance to the Cross of Sacrifice with two Lombardy poplars at its sides. There is a second axis, across the central axis, between the first and the second part of the cemetery with a seat and the War Stone on either side. The first part has a specific layout, whereas the second part has been arranged symmetrically.

Apart from the impressive poplars, there are a number of alders in the field with the headstones. The two side paths in the rear field are closed off by means of higher plants. In addition a number of backborders have been laid out to break the length of the cemetery. (Geurst, 2010, p.432)


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

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Imperial War Graves Commission