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Maintainance of private gravestones

 
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spoons



Joined: 02 Oct 2007
Posts: 1788
Location: St John's Town of Dalry

PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 11:13 am    Post subject: Maintainance of private gravestones Reply with quote

Not so much a query, more an observation.

I have noticed that where a war grave is marked with a private stone and not a CWGC one, sometimes the name of the soldier/sailor/airman etc has been maintained but the remainder of the names on the stone have not. See R S Timlin at Larbert for an example.

I presume that this is the CWGC policy for such stones?

\Paul
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David McNay
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Joined: 21 Sep 2007
Posts: 1556
Location: Lanarkshire

PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've seen that for a number of Lanarkshire graves as well. Seems a strange practice, but each to their own...
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apanderson



Joined: 02 Oct 2007
Posts: 6909
Location: Stirlingshire

PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 10:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've noticed that a lot of stones have the names 'highlighted' but it didn't dawn on me that it would be CWGC Burials but non-CWGC stones.

I've met quite a few of the chaps who look after the CWGC stones in various cemeteries so next time I meet one, I must ask.

I have my doubts though - it would take them forever to track down each plot. I've found lots of CWGC stones in a terrible state in wee forgotten nooks and crannies which never get any attention - I would have thought they would get the care they're supposed to get??

There's a thread running on GWF called something like 'the worst kept stone' which I think is just CWGC stones - the ones I've had a look at are in great nick compared to some I've found. (I'll eventually get round to posting the photos for all to see)

Anne
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Adam Brown



Joined: 21 Sep 2007
Posts: 722
Location: Edinburgh

PostPosted: Tue Nov 06, 2007 11:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm sure the CWGC have a duty of some sort to check on their graves in the UK every so often to make sure there is a marker but are not responsible for the headstones. Something to do with the original charter.

In practice I think it's up to the local council to maintain them for the CWGC. Im sure there have been lengthy discussions on the GWF about who is (or isn't) responsible. I've seen CWGC headstones in good condition and abandoned in the same cemetery.

Over the past few weeks I've noticed on the forum stones with the names highlighted. I wasn't sure if it was some fancy bit of software being used by you all to pick out the letters and I had to look very closely at some photographs!!

If you notice the old granite Great War headstones have black lettering. perhaps if someone touches up these headstones with paint they also take the opportunity to do the other CWGC markers at the same time?

Adam
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spoons



Joined: 02 Oct 2007
Posts: 1788
Location: St John's Town of Dalry

PostPosted: Wed Nov 07, 2007 9:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here is one from Crossmichael to illustrate the point.
It must be some 'official' organisation that has done this, I cannot imagine that the family would not also do the others.

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JIMMCGINLAY



Joined: 05 Oct 2007
Posts: 748
Location: Glasgow

PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2007 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've found exactly the same cleaning/highlighting in my local Cathcart Cemetery and assumed it was a keen local (a single poppy has also appeared in the ground in front of many graves since Sunday). I've been walking the dog there for years however and never came across anyone cleaning a stone. I just assumed it was local and was surprised to read this thread, strange Rolling Eyes
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apanderson



Joined: 02 Oct 2007
Posts: 6909
Location: Stirlingshire

PostPosted: Fri Nov 16, 2007 11:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What do you make of this then . . . . . . ?

I have just posted photos and details (Camelon Cemetery) of brothers William and Joseph Ferrier.

William was a CWGC Burial and his name has been 'highlighted' on the family stone, while his brother Joseph's name hasn't. (Joseph was buried at Twelve Tree Copse Cemetery)

Maybe this answers the question - it's only people actually buried at that location who's names are 'highlighted'.

I personally think if this is 'policy' - it's high time it was changed - or am I wrong?

In the meantime, I think I'll give GWF a wee visit and ask the powers that be to see if I can get some sort of definitive answer.

Anne
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apanderson



Joined: 02 Oct 2007
Posts: 6909
Location: Stirlingshire

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2007 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I started a thread asking about this subject on GWF and it seems CWGC has no connection with this 'activity'.

If you want to see the replies:

http://1914-1918.invisionzone.com/forums/index.php?s=0bb3d0039c4f0a92d3f561336e9420ff&showtopic=86234&st=0&#entry802483

Anne
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spoons



Joined: 02 Oct 2007
Posts: 1788
Location: St John's Town of Dalry

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2007 10:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I have 4 or 5 such examples and I cannot imagine that a family would chose to clean or highlight just the one name so if it wasn't CWGC, my bet is on the British Legion.

\Paul
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apanderson



Joined: 02 Oct 2007
Posts: 6909
Location: Stirlingshire

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2007 10:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree Paul.

No family would only pick out one son or daughter.

But that leads to another question - why would the British Legion only pick out certains ones too - and why only some of the stones and not others?

I'm beginning to think unless somone catches the 'culprit' with whatever box of tricks they use, we'll never know the answer.

If you read through the other thread, did you notice Terry said he had pictures of Scottish stones where he'd seen this before. I wonder if this means it's only here it's done. (The same as mounting 'dead man's pennies on stones???) Confused

Anne

P.S. - See what you've started!! Wink
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spoons



Joined: 02 Oct 2007
Posts: 1788
Location: St John's Town of Dalry

PostPosted: Sat Nov 17, 2007 10:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The reason that I thought of the British Legion is that for most cemeteries in this area, each war grave (including private memorials) has a poppy cross placed on it (presumably by the British Legion) and I thought that perhaps they cleaned or highlighted ones where it was difficult to read the names. The only other thing I can think is that someone else has been around photographing them and some basic cleaning was done as part of that.

\Paul
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Gunner



Joined: 19 Dec 2007
Posts: 10
Location: CHESTERFIELD

PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 1:13 pm    Post subject: Care of headstones Reply with quote

Not sure if Scottish practice differs from English practice, but I have had contact with some of the CWGC areas in England and they maintain the areas around a private memorial that includes a war casualty in the same way as they do CWGC headstones, usually by paying a local to keep the area well tended. I can vouch for this as the grave of our George's Pilot is kept cleared even though the graveyard is head high in brambles. They also periodically check to ensure that the details of the casualty are clear, usually about every 3 years I think. However they are not allowed to carry out any work on a private memorial that is not a War casualty for the simple reason that they do not own the headstone. I have been informed that if the casualties details were no longer clear, then if it was not possible to contact who is reponsible for the plot, then errecting a CWGC headstone would be another option.
Gunner
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