Darwen Eastern and Western Cemeteries have 97 War Graves within the grounds.
The majority are in the Old Western Cemetery.
The Friends of Darwen Cemetery have prepared a number of the War Graves ready for adoption.
We are asking interested families or organisations if they would like to adopt a war grave to help with the up keep.
All we are asking is you visit the grave on a regular basis and tend the bed of the grave. You may plant flowers or place floral tributes,
The Headstones are the responsibility of Commonwealth War Graves Commission – and they will clean or repair them.
Some of the War Graves maintained over the last 10 years
George was born on the 14th January 1885 in Darwen, the second son of William and Maria (known as Marcia) Hill. He was baptised on the 26th March 1885 at Bolton Road Wesleyan Church, Darwen. At the age of 29 he was a cotton weaver and lived at 5 Ivy Terrace. He married Jane Fish, aged 26 a Confectioner of 443 Bolton Road, at Bolton Road Wesleyan Church on 10th March 1914. (Her parents were William Fish and Betty Atherton.)
It was reported in the DARWEN NEWS & GAZETTE on the 23rd March 1918 – An intimation has been received at his home in Northcote Street that A.B. (Able Seaman) George Calvert of the Royal Naval Division is now in hospital abroad suffering from gas poisoning. He is one of four brothers who joined the forces and one as been killed.
It was then reported in the DARWEN NEWS on the 4th May 1918 – News reached Darwen yesterday that Private G Calvert of Northcote Street was badly gassed serving in the seat of war and removed to Hospital in Nottingham were he passed away. He was married and leaves a widow but with no children. The second son of William and Marcia Calvert of 5 Ivy Terrace, he made the supreme sacrifice.
His Service Record states, he joined up on 13th June 1917 and was drafted to BEF on the 17th December 1917. He joined Anson Battalion on 5th January 1918 – 12th March 1918. Gassed and invalided to the UK on 14th March 1918.
He was buried on the 8th May 1918 in Section 4 Plot 1070 where his wife joined him on the 13th December 1937 (she committed suicide).
Bolton Road United Reformed Church has a memorial to him and his two brothers William Henry (born 1888 – died October 1917 in Belgium and Herbert (born1890 – died 26th October 1918 in France. Another brother Norman served in the Irish Guards and later worked for the Darwen Gazette he died on the 6th February1938 at Southport Infirmary.
(information Courtesy of Teresa Watson)
James Edward Eccles
This is the Commonwealth War Grave of John Edward Eccles adopted by Janet Holmes.
In a few short months Janet has turned this overgrown neglected grave into a modest memorial to a fallen hero.
If you fancy a steep climb to Section F of the Old Section of the Western Cemetery your efforts will be rewarded. Look carefully to your left down the slope, and there, slightly obscured by the shrubs and sometimes overgrown grass, you will see the grave of Ernest Jones.
He served in the Royal Irish Regiment, as a Private. He died on 20th January 1918, aged 37 years. He was the Son of Mary Jones, of Peabody St., Darwen,
and the late James Jones.
This grave has been adopted by Mr J. Jones note they share the same name, and that’s not all.
Lisa Heyhurst & Andrew Davies have adopted this WW1 grave of Corporal W. Lodge who died 21st March 1915, his age is unknown. He served in the East Lancashire Regiment
J D Knight
This is the Commonwealth War Grave of Sapper, J. D. Knight, Husband of Annie Knight, of 124, Geoffrey St., Chorley, Lancs. He died on the 12th September 1918 aged 33years old. He served with the Royal Engineers. This grave is adopted and tended by Lisa Heyhurst and Andrew Davies
This is the Commonwealth War Grave of Private J. Bury adopted by Lisa Heyhurst and Andrew Davies. Private Bury served in the East Lancashire Regiment 12th Battalion. He died in 1916 on the 15th April. His age is unknown.Lisa and Andrew have chosen to use white stones and small flowers.
Lance Corporal E. Heys
This is the Commonwealth War Grave of Lance Corporal, E. Heys . He served with the East Lancashire Regiment and died at the age of 29 on the 9th December 1918. He lived in Sudellside St, Darwen with his wife Betsy. He was the son of Thomas and Margaret Heys also of Darwen. Adopted in July 2010.
Some photographs of Whitehall Scout Group attending their 6 War Graves all in Section 4