Pas de Calais



General Directions: Hersin is a village about 5 kilometres south of Bethune and about 2 kilometres west of the main road from Bethune to Arras. The Communal Cemetery and Extension lie to the north-east of the village.

The extension to Hersin Communal Cemetery was begun by French troops, who made over 100 burials, and was taken over by Commonwealth troops and field ambulances in March 1916. It was used until October 1918.

The extension now contains 224 Commonwealth burials of the First World War; many of the graves are of engineers, mostly from tunnelling companies. All but seven of the French graves have been removed.
Sir Edwin Lutyens & William Harrison Cowlishaw.

Shot at Dawn: 36224 Private, James Skone, 2nd Bn. Welsh Regiment, executed for murder 10/05/1918, aged 39. Plot III. B. 1. Son of Mrs. Mary Skone, of 13, Thomas St., Orange Gardens, Pembroke.

Arthur Briggs

(Courtesy of Sally) @


Shot at Dawn: 21801 Private, Arthur Briggs, 9th Bn. Sherwood Foresters (Notts and Derby Regiment), executed for desertion 19/07/1918, aged 27. Plot III. E. 2. Son of Harriet Briggs, of 7, Railway View, Locksford Lane, Brimington, Chesterfield.




The mass pardon of 306 British Empire soldiers executed for certain offences during the Great War was enacted in section 359 of the Armed Forces Act 2006, which came into effect on royal assent on 8 November 2006

Casualty Details: UK 130, Canada 39, Australia 55, France 7, Total Burials: 231


4897 Private

Edwin Shears

2nd Bn. East Lancashire Regiment

09/07/1916, aged 29.

Son of Isabella Slater (formerly Shears), of 7, Villiers St., Wood Top, Burnley, and the late John Shears.

Plot I. F. 3.



187705 Private

Frank Smith

8th Bn. Canadian Infantry

23/03/1918, aged 33.

Plot I. A. 18.

Husband of the late Nancy Walton, they emigrated to Canada in 1910. Nancy died two years later in Winnipeg where Frank was working as a Porter for Canadian Pacific.


5136 Private

Arthur Cutts

1st Bn. Sherwood Foresters

(Notts and Derby Regiment)


Plot I. B. 6.

R/12813 Rifleman

Henry Thornton

1st Bn. King's Royal Rifle Corps


Plot I. B. 10.



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