ROCLINCOURT MILITARY CEMETERY
Pas de Calais
General Directions: Roclincourt is a village a little to the east of the road from Arras to Lens. Take the N 17 from Arras until the junction of this road and the D 60 (first CWGC sign here). Travel along the D 60 into Roclincourt village, for approximately one kilometre, to a right turn (direction St Nicholas). Take this road for approximately 175 metres to a lane on the right. The cemetery lies 100 metres away at the foot of this lane.
The French troops who held this front before March 1916 made a military cemetery (now removed), on the south-west side of which the present Commonwealth cemetery was made. It was begun by the 51st (Highland) and 34th Divisions in April 1917, and contains many graves of 9 April, the first day of the Battles of Arras. It continued in use, as a front-line cemetery, until October 1918 and after the Armistice graves, mostly from the battlefield north of Roclincourt, were brought into Plot IV, Row F.
Roclincourt Military Cemetery contains 916 Commonwealth burials of the First World War, 32 of them unidentified. There are also four German war graves.
The cemetery was designed by Sir Reginald Blomfield.
Originally, the cemetery contained a wooden memorial erected by the 22nd Royal Fusiliers to one officer and 27 N.C.O.'s and men who fell in action at Oppy in April and May 1917.
Shot at Dawn: 393923 Rifleman, Harry Williams, 1/9th Bn. Royal Fusiliers (Queen Victoria's Rifles), executed for desertion 28/12/1917. Plot II. F. 4. Son of Mrs. Isabella Hitchcock, of 122, Colville Road, Acton, London.
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 783, Canada 133, Germany 4, Total Burials: 920