1,700,000 men & women of the Commonwealth forces died in the two World Wars. Of this number, the remains of 925,000 were found and their graves are marked by a headstone. Where the remains were not found, the individual's name is commemorated on a memorial. At Gallipoli alone, 36,00 Commonwealth servicemen died. The 31 war cemeteries on the Gallipoli Peninsular contain 22,000 graves, though it was possible to identify only 9,000 of these. The 13,000 who rest in graves known only to God in the cemeteries, coupled with more than 14,000 whose remains were never found are commemorated individually by name on a number of memorials including the Lone Pine Memorial, Chunuk Blair Memorial and Helles Memorial.
The tireless effort of marking and maintaining the graves of the Commonwealth Forces who died in the two World Wars, to build memorials to those who have no known grave or who perished at sea, to embellish sites with horticulture to give casualties dignified commemoration and to keep records and registers is carried out by The Commonwealth War Graves Commission which was established by Royal Charter in 1917.
The cost is borne on a proportionate basis by the member governments - Australia, Britain, Canada, India New Zealand, and South Africa. Other Commonwealth counties contribute to the effort by carrying out the routine care and maintenance of graves and memorials in their own lands. There are war graves in some 150 countries across the world; mostly in the 2,500 war cemeteries and plots constructed by the Commission. There are also war graves in many civil cemeteries and churchyards.
In recognition of the effort the Commonwealth War Graves Commission undertakes at memorials as far afield as Gallipoli, Bita Paka and El Alamein, on the go are proud to make a donation to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission on your behalf for every ANZAC package booked.
We invite you to peruse the website of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission and encourage individuals to make their own personal bequest at www.cwgc.org.