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Ypres and the Great War
Commonwealth War Graves Commission
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission was founded by Royal Charter in 1917. It is responsible for the marking and the maintenance of the Commonwealth war graves of the dead who fell during the First and Second World War.
This Commission cares for a total of 1.7 million casualties in 150 countries. The funding of its work comes from the 6 commonwealth countries of which the United Kingdom funds around 78% of the whole budget. The office based in Ypres, is responsible for the care of the Commonwealth war cemeteries and memorials in 11 countries in Northern Europe (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland and Sweden). It employs over 200 staff to carry out its operations.
The Commission's commitment extends to some 23,000 sites in over 150 countries across the world. There are more than 150 Commonwealth cemeteries in the Ypres Salient. The commission is also responsible for the Menin Gate Memorial in Ypres.
They are always looking for innovative ways to improve how to inform the public. The war records of the Commission are considered important information on world war I.
The information held by the CWGC can be very useful for people researching their family history (genealogy) or simply trying to find out more about the recipient of a First World War medal. The details provided by the CWGC can help to locate the actual grave within a cemetery or the name commemorated on a WW1 memorial if you're planning to make a visit.
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