PERONNE COMMUNAL CEMETERY EXTENSION
General Directions: From Bapaume take the N17 to Peronne. On entering Peronne, turn right towards the hospital. On reaching the hospital, which will be on the right, take the small road opposite and the communal cemetery is at the end of this road on the left. The extension is on the south-west side of the cemetery.
Peronne was taken by the German on 24 September 1914. On 18 March
1917, the 40th and 48th Divisions captured the town, but it was recovered by
the Germans on the 23rd March 1918. It changed hands for the last time on 1
September 1918, when it was taken by the 2nd Australian Division
Victoria Cross: 1876 Corporal, Alexander Henry Buckley, VC, 54th Bn. Australian Infantry. Killed in action 01/09/1918. Plot II. C. 32. Son of James and Julia Buckley, of Homebush, New South Wales. Born at Gulargambone, New South Wales.
An extract from "The London Gazette," dated 14th Dec., 1918, records the following:-"For most conspicuous bravery and self-sacrifice at Peronne during the operations on the 1st/2nd Sept., 1918. After passing the first objective his half company and part of the company on the flank were held up by a machine gun nest. With one man he rushed the post shooting four of the occupants and taking 22 prisoners. Later on reaching a moat, it was found that another machine gun nest commanded the only available footbridge. Whilst this was being engaged from a flank Cpl. Buckley endeavoured to cross the bridge and rush the post, but was killed in the attempt. Throughout the advance he had displayed great initiative, resource and courage, and by his efforts to save his comrades from casualties, he set a fine example of self-sacrificing devotion to duty."
Shot at Dawn: Private W. Robinson, 1st Bn. Sherwood Foresters (Notts and Derby Regiment), executed for desertion 10/04/1917. Plot III. B. 22.
The mass pardon of 306 British Empire soldiers executed for certain offences during the Great War was enacted in section 359 of the Armed Forces Act 2006, which came into effect on royal assent on 8 November 2006.
Casualty Details: UK 1065, Canada 1, Australia 517, South Africa 9, Germany 97, Total Burials: 1689
14th Bn. Black Watch (Royal Highlanders)
(Fife and Forfar Yeomanry)
02/09/1918, aged 22.
Plot B. III. 33
John Wallace Keith b. 5/6/1896 in Ladybank, Fife, Scotland was the son of Robert and Jane Wallace Keith. John was unmarried and working in the ticket office of Kirkcaldy Railway Station at the time he enlisted in the Fife & Forfar Yeomanry (the Black Watch). His first posting was to Egypt, but dysentery caused him to be shipped home to recover. He returned to the war in France and was killed in an action in the fields around the village of Moislain, Somme on 2/9/1918. Those killed in the same action were buried in Moislains but at the end of the war re-interred at the Peronne Communal Cemetery Extension.
John's name is shown on war memorials in Ladybank and Giffardtown, Fife and on the Railworkers National Memorial inside Edinburgh's Waverley Station. The Books of Remembrance at Edinburgh Castle show 'no known grave' but in 2001, thanks to the Commonwealth War Grave website, his burial site at Peronne was finally found. The next Spring our family, including his nephew Robert, travelled to France to honour him, placing a Saltire and British Legion cross on the grave.
The cemetery at Peronne is quiet and beautifully maintained - more a tranquil garden than a 'foreign field'.
Picture and text courtesy of A Wade.
56th Bn. Australian Infantry, A. I. F.
Son of Martin and Ann Cass, and Father of Annie, Martin, Harry and Edith. Born at Young, New South Wales.
Plot I. C. 4.
Picture courtesy of great grandson Darren Bermingham
Walter Sidney Pollard
"B" Battery, 86th Bde.
Royal Field Artillery
14/09/1918, aged 28.
Son of William and Mary Pollard. Born in Bristol
Plot III. F. 10.
His epitaph reads: "Worthy of everlasting remembrance"
Picture courtesy of Josephine Drew, great niece
345355 Lance Corporal
14th (Fife and Forfar Yeomanry) Bn.
Black Watch (Royal Highlanders)
02/09/1918, aged 20.
Son of the late William Husband and of Barbara Husband, of 78, North St., St. Andrews. Fife.
Plot IV. B. 20.
Picture courtesy of great niece, Margaret McRobert
George William Parsons
13th Bn. Gloucestershire Regiment
22/03/1918, aged 33.
Son of John and Minnie Parsons, of 65, Sevier St., Bristol; husband of Lily Gertrude Parsons, of 1, Lancaster Rd., St. Werburghs, Bristol. Buried near this spot.
Plot IV. H. 7.
Picture courtesy of great nephew, Steven J. Parsons