Note on visits to war graves



Note on visits to war graves


Explains rules for visits to war graves on the continent. Contains information on length of visits, obtaining passports and possible financial aid.



Temporal Coverage




Two page typewritten letter


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[British Legion crest]
Our Ref. 184828
Dear [deleted] Sir [/deleted] /Madam,
[underlined] VISIT TO WAR GRAVE [/underlined]
With reference to your enquiry regarding a desired visit to a war grave on the continent, the Government has decided that visits can again be made to cemeteries in France, Holland, Belgium, Denmark and Luxembourg.
It is hope that it will also be possible to extend the scheme to include Italy and Sicily, in which case an announcement will be made to this effect.
I am enclosing herewith Form No. W.G.1 which should be completed and returned to this Office.
The stipulated duration of any such visits will be approximately three to four days, dependent upon the location of the cemetery. This includes travelling time to and from the continent, allowing one clear day for visiting the grave.
With regard to passport, it is possible to obtain one at a reduced cost of 7/6d. to bona fide visitors to war grave cemeteries. This will only be valid for three months and must be surrendered on return to this country.
Application Forms are available for persons wishing to take advantage of this concession. Husband and wife may have a joint passport for the same cost of 7/6d.
All persons over the age of 16 years must be in possession of a passport when travelling overseas.
A remittance of 7/6 must be forwarded with each Passport Application Form.
By arrangement with the Bank of England a special currency allowance of £10 can be obtained for war grave visitors. This special allowance is confined to Relatives coming within the category mentioned overleaf.
The average estimated cost per person from London to a cemetery in one of the above mentioned countries is:-
France (Northern) … £14
Holland …………. £17
Belgium ………… £16
Luxembourg ………. £19
Denmark …………. £21
These figures include £5 foreign currency, which will be required to meet the cost of accommodation on the continent, and any other incidental charges.
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Experience has shown that this amount of £5 has been found to be quite sufficient to meet the expenses incurred on a normal visit.
If you are unable to make the desired visit without financial aid [underlined] and have not previously been granted financial assistance for the purpose of visiting a war grave, [/underlined] assistance may be granted in genuine necessitous cases and subject to a test of means, to two relatives only who fall within the following category of relationship to the deceased:-
Parent – Step Parent – Foster Parent.
Children – Step Children – Foster Children.
Sister – Step Sister – Adopted Sister.
Brother – Step Brother – Adopted Brother.
Relatives or other persons who do not come within the above category must obtain their own currency through a Bank, and for this purpose will require a full validity passport which costs 15/-.
It must, however, be pointed out, that under existing Government regulations, foreign currency for intended visitors to Belgium will only be provided to those persons who satisfy the above specified relationship to the deceased.
Yours faithfully,
(A.G. Webb)
Director of Employment and Pensions.
P.S. I enclose particulars of the Overseas Wreath Laying and Photographic Service, which you may like to retain for future use.



The British Legion, “Note on visits to war graves,” IBCC Digital Archive, accessed March 1, 2024,

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