Three Rutland soldiers are commemorated in this big concentration cemetery near the village of Souchez, near Arras. Cabaret Rouge was a small, red-bricked, red-tiled café that stood close to this site in the early days of the First World War. The café was destroyed by shellfire in March 1915 but it gave its unusual name to this sector and to a communication trench that led troops up the front-line. Commonwealth soldiers began burying their fallen comrades here in March 1916. It was greatly enlarged in the years after the war when as many as 7,000 graves were concentrated here from over 100 other cemeteries in the area. For much of the twentieth century, Cabaret Rouge served as one of a small number of ‘open cemeteries’ at which the remains of fallen servicemen newly discovered in the region were buried. Today the cemetery contains over 7,650 burials of the First World War, more than half of which remain unidentified. Cabaret Rouge has a particularly close connection with the Canadian Infantry, as hundreds of Canadians who were killed at the Battle of Vimy Ridge in April 1917 were ultimately laid to rest here. In May 2000 the remains of an unknown Canadian soldier were taken from this cemetery and buried in a special tomb at the foot of the National War Memorial in Ottowa, Canada. A headstone in plot 8, Row E, Grave 7 marks his original grave. Cecil Holmes from Tinwell was originally buried at Fleubaix churchyard but is now commemorated beside the front wall at the far left of the cemetery. Elijah Thompson from Barleythorpe in in block 15 which is the third block as you walk clockwise around the Stone of Remembrance. And Ralph Hill from Pilton is in block 29, in the far left of the cemetery, about half way up.

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12 images Some pictures of the Cemetery, taken 12 April 2015.
By John Stokes on Wednesday 15th April '15 at 8:23pm
A Rutlander, living in Belgium

Rutland and The Battle of the Somme

More than 90 Rutland soldiers died in the Battle of the Somme which lasted from 1 July 1916 until the middle of November. Today they lie in cemeteries across the old battlefield in northern France or are remembered among the 72,000 names on the Thiepval Memorial to the Missing of the Somme. By using our interactive map, you can find out what happened to them.

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