VILLERS HILL BRITISH CEMETERY, VILLERS-GUISLAIN
|Total identified casualties||385 Find these records|
|Casualties from||First World War|
Villers-Guislain is a village 16 kilometres south-south-west of Cambrai and 4 kilometres east of Gouzeaucourt, which is a large village on the main road from Cambrai to Peronne. Villers Hill British Cemetery is one kilometre south-east of the village.
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Villers-Guislain was occupied by Commonwealth forces from April 1917 until the German counter attacks (in the Battle of Cambrai) at the end of November 1917. It was lost on 30 November and retained by the Germans on 1 December in spite of the fierce attacks of the Guards Division and tanks. The village was finally abandoned by the Germans on 30 September 1918, after heavy fighting. Villers Hill British Cemetery was begun (as the Middlesex Cemetery, Gloucester Road) by the 33rd Division Burial Officer on 3 October 1918, and used until the middle of October. The original cemetery (now Plot I) contained 100 graves, of which 50 belonged to the 1st Middlesex and 35 to the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. Plot II and VII were added after the Armistice when graves were brought in from the battlefields and from the following German cemeteries:- GONNELIEU COMMUNAL CEMETERY GERMAN EXTENSION, in which eight soldiers from the United Kingdom, who fell on the 6th May 1917, were buried by their comrades. This extension was enlarged after the Armistice to contain 400 German graves. The Communal Cemetery contains one British grave which is permanently marked, and seven others now represented by special memorials at Villers Hill. HONNECOURT GERMAN CEMETERY, which was near the road from Honnecourt to Gonnelieu, and contained 20 German and three British graves. VILLERS-GUISLAIN GERMAN CEMETERY, which was on the south side of "Cemetery Road" (leading to Gouzeaucourt), and nearly opposite the Communal Cemetery. One British officer was buried here in April 1917 and 21 British soldiers in September and October 1918. The 600 German graves (some of which were brought in after the Armistice) were removed in 1922. The great majority of the graves in this cemetery are those of officers and men who died in April 1917, November-December 1917, March 1918 and September 1918. The cemetery now contains 732 Commonwealth burials and commemorations of the First World War. 350 of the burials are unidentified but there are special memorials to seven casualties known or believed to be buried among them. Other special memorials commemorate casualties buried in Gonnelieu Communal Cemetery and Honnecourt German Cemetery whose grave could not be found. The cemetery also contains 13 German burials. The cemetery was designed by Charles Holden.