Lest We Forget
RAMLEH WAR CEMETERY, ISRAEL
Photographs Copyright © Michael D. Robson 2006
The Cemetery is open from 0600 to 1400 every day. From Tel Aviv, take road number one (Ayalon) south towards Jerusalem. Leave at the exit signposted Lod/Ramleh. This is the exit after Ben Gurion Airport. Proceed along Route 40 for approximately 5 kilometres. At the traffic lights signposted Lod (South) turn right. At the roundabout turn left. The Cemetery entrance is on the left, after 400 metres.
The cemetery dates from the First World War, when Ramleh (now Ramla) was occupied by the 1st Australian Light Horse Brigade on 1 November 1917. Field ambulances, and later casualty clearing stations, were posted at Ramleh and Lydda from December 1917 onwards. The cemetery was begun by the medical units, but some graves were brought in later from the battlefields and from Latron, Sarona and Wilhema Military and Indian Cemeteries. During the Second World War, this cemetery was used by the Ramla Royal Air Force Station and by various Commonwealth hospitals posted in turn to the area for varying periods. RAMLEH WAR CEMETERY contains 3,300 Commonwealth burials of the First World War, 964 of them unidentified. Second World War burials number 1,168. There are also 891 war graves of other nationalities from both wars, and 525 non-war burials, many from the RAF and garrison stations that were at Ramleh in the inter war years and until the end of the British Mandate in Palestine in 1948. Within Ramleh War Cemetery will be found: The RAMLEH 1914-18 MEMORIAL, erected in 1961 to commemorate more than 300 Commonwealth, German and Turkish servicemen of the First World War who lie buried in cemeteries elsewhere in Israel where their graves could no longer be maintained. Only 74 of the casualties are named. The RAMLEH 1939-45 MEMORIAL, commemorating 28 Jewish and non Arab servicemen of the Second World War, and six non-war casualties of the Palestine Police Force, who lie buried in cemeteries elsewhere in Israel where their graves could not be maintained in perpetuity.
Details extracted from the Commonwealth War Graves Commission web site.
Last updated 4 December, 2006