Coriano Ridge War Cemetery
- Country Italy
- Total identified casualties 1887 Find these casualties
- Identified casualties from Second World War
- GPS Coordinates Latitude: 43.98464, Longitude: 12.60415
Coriano Ridge War Cemetery is 3.5 kilometres west of Riccione, a seaside resort on the Adriatic coast, and is reached by turning west off the main Rimini/Riccione road, the SS 16, about 1 kilometre north-west of Riccione. At this turning there is a sign leading to the cemetery. Follow it in the direction of Coriano until a T junction is reached, then turn left and after a short distance the cemetery will be found on the right-hand side. Cemetery address: Via Piane, 4 - 47853 Coriano (RN) Emilia Romagna. GPS Co-ordinates: Latitude: 43.98485, Longitude: 12.604041.
All routes to the cemetery are signposted.
The car park is directly outside the main entrance to the cemetery. There is a large area within the car park dedicated for coaches to park.
The car parking area is flat with a gravel and stone surface.
ACCESS, LAYOUT AND MAIN ENTRANCE
The cemetery is long and rectangular shaped.
The main entrance is accessed from the parking area, edged by a stone raised kerb, though a double gate, approximately 1.6 metres wide. Approximately 50 metres of downward sloping grass leads to a courtyard area with sections of raised mosaic pebbles and flat paving, accessed up three steps from the entrance side, and approximately 10 steps down into the cemetery.
There are two large buildings, one on either side of the courtyard, with single a step up through the three openings into Memorial shelter on the right side. There are benches and a Register Box located inside. The left building is a tool store.
The Cross of Sacrifice stands at the furthest point from the main road.
There is an alternative entrance into the cemetery, down a stone and concrete ramp, with a 2-meter-wide access gate into the cemetery on the left-hand side of tool store.
The ramp slopes down onto the grass burial area. The internal paths within the cemetery are grass and flat.
The cemetery is permanently open.
On 3 September 1943 the Allies invaded the Italian mainland, the invasion coinciding with an armistice made with the Italians who then re-entered the war on the Allied side.
Following the fall of Rome to the Allies in June 1944, the German retreat became ordered and successive stands were made on a series of defensive lines. In the northern Apennine mountains the last of these, the Gothic Line, was breached by the Allies during the Autumn campaign and the front inched forward as far as Ravenna in the Adriatic sector, but with divisions transferred to support the new offensive in France, and the Germans dug in to a number of key defensive positions, the advance stalled as winter set in.
Coriano Ridge was the last important ridge in the way of the Allied advance in the Adriatic sector in the autumn of 1944. Its capture was the key to Rimini and eventually to the River Po. German parachute and panzer troops, aided by bad weather, resisted all attacks on their positions between 4 and 12 September 1944. On the night of 12 September the Eighth Army reopened its attack on the Ridge, with the 1st British and 5th Canadian Armoured Divisions. This attack was successful in taking the Ridge, but marked the beginning of a week of the heaviest fighting experienced since Cassino in May, with daily losses for the Eighth Army of some 150 killed.
The site for the cemetery was selected in April 1945 and was created from graves brought in from the surrounding battlefields.
Coriano Ridge War Cemetery contains 1,939 Commonwealth burials of the Second World War.