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Mesnil Communal Cemetery Extension, France

Photographs Copyright © Lynda Smith 2002

The village of Mesnil was close to the British front line until September 1916 and again in 1918.

The Cemetery has over 300 burials of soldiers, sailors and airmen for Britain, Canada and New Zealand, of which nearly 100 are "known only unto God".

For more information about Mesnil see

The largest number of fallen from any of the Regiments represented here is from The Royal Naval Division. It is somewhat surprising to find so many graves showing the emblem of the Naval Anchor, so far from the sea. This is explained by the fact that in 1914, there were some 20,000 Royal Naval Reservists. It was decided to form Royal Naval Divisions, who although fighting as soldiers, would still be classed as the Senior Service. The RND saw active service in many areas of fighting, from The Dardanelles to The Somme. They were without doubt a formidable force, and won many battle honours throughout World War 1.

Last updated 17 February, 2009

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