Headstone Dedications Ceremony

A ceremony will held at 7.00pm on 19th July 2011, in the Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery, in northern France. This public event, to be held on the 95th anniversary of the Battle of Fromelles, is to dedicate the newly erected headstones of 14 Australian soldiers who have been positively identified through the ongoing investigations funded by the Australian and British Governments. This simple ceremony will provide an opportunity for family members of these soldiers to honour their sacrifice and reflect alongside the graves of their relatives.

Mid Caption: The Joint Australian and United Kingdom project to recover, re-inter and identify 250 Australian and British First World War soldiers from Pheasant Wood in Fromelles, France is continuing.

The Australian Fromelles Project Group was established by Army in late 2008 to manage all Australian aspects of the project in conjunction with thier counterparts in the British Ministry of Defence and the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

The Group successfully established contacts with over 2,000 relatives and descendants of soldiers killed at Fromelles where no record of their recovery exists. Following the successful identification of 96 Australian soldiers and the opening and dedication of the new Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery, the Group was disbanded in August 2010.

The Australian aspects of this Joint project are now managed through the Unrecovered War Casualties – Army cell. Work to identify the remaining 154 unnamed soldiers of Pheasant Wood continues as Army strives to establish contact with more relatives and descendants in the hope that their involvement will lead to further identifications.

The project is scheduled for completion in 2014.