CWGC commemorates largest naval battle in history
31 May 2014
The Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) is helping to
bring Orkney's war-time history to life with the launch of
21st century signage at Lyness Royal Naval Cemetery on
The interactive CWGC Visitor Information Panels at Lyness Royal
Naval Cemetery will be unveiled on 31 May by Mr Colin Kerr,
the CWGC's lead director for the Centenary of the First World War,
during an event to commemorate the anniversary of the Battle of
Jutland - the largest naval battle in history.
On 31 May 1916, the main fleets of the British and German navies
clashed on the eastern side of the North Sea, at the Battle of
Jutland. For the Royal Navy, Jutland was unprecedented and remains
unsurpassed: some 110,000 sailors fought in 150 British and 100
German vessels. A total of 14 British and 11 German warships were
lost or damaged beyond repair. More than 6,000 Royal Navy sailors
and 2,500 Germans were killed, with many others suffering serious
burns and wounds. Despite its losses, the Royal Navy retained
command of the sea.
Mr Kerr said: "The Commonwealth War Graves Commission is at the
heart of events to mark the Centenary of the First World War. We
see an important part of that role as encouraging greater numbers
of visitors to our cemeteries and then helping those visitors to
appreciate why these places are here, who looks after them and why
it is important to remember those who died.
"Here at Lyness, surely one of the most beautiful CWGC cemetery
locations, we have been pleased to work with our partners in the
Orkney Islands Council and the Royal Navy to raise awareness of the
sacrifices made by the men and women of the Royal Navy during the
two world wars.
"The new panels at Lyness will be an interactive way for new
generations to learn about the final resting place of so many
Commonwealth servicemen and women, in an engaging and meaningful
way. I hope that the installation encourages many more people to
visit this stunning and moving cemetery, and remember those who
fell during both world wars."
Click here to access
some of the personal stories from the panels.
The panels at Lyness are among 500 to be installed at CWGC
locations worldwide and feature information about the site of the
cemetery and a QR (Quick Response) code. When scanned with a
smartphone, the QR Code provides access for further information
including the personal stories of some of the casualties buried or
Among the stories revealed on the panels at Lyness are those of
Walter Adams from Somerset, who died when HMS Hampshire struck a
German mine off Marwick Head in heavy weather on the evening of 5
June 1916 and sank within 15 minutes. All but 12 men of over 650 on
board perished, including Lord Kitchener, who was travelling
with a delegation to Russia.
Click here to read the full