Wytschaete was held by French or British forces until, after a severe bombardment, it was captured by the Germans on the 1st November, 1914. It was retaken the next day, for a short time, by the French XVITH Corps and British Cavalry; but from that date until the 7th June, 1917 (the Battle of Messines) it remained in enemy hands. From June, 1917, to April, 1918, it was in our possession; and on the 16th April, 1918, it was captured by the Germans after six days' fighting. On the 28th September it was finally retaken by British troops. The Battle Exploit Memorial of the 16th (Irish) Division adjoins the Military Cemetery, and that of the 19th (Western) Division is North-East of the village, on the Ypres-Warneton road. The Military Cemetery was made after the Armistice by the concentration of isolated graves and small cemeteries from the battlefields of 1914-1918 surrounding Wytschaete. There are now 1002, 1914-18 Commonwealth war casualties commemorated in this site. Of these, 673 are unidentified and sixteen special headstones are erected to commemorate soldiers from the United Kingdom known, or believed, to be buried among them. There are also memorials to 4 soldiers from the United Kingdom buried, but not found, in the Cemetery near Rossignol Estaminet; 3 buried, but not found, at R.E. (Beaver) Farm; and 2 buried, but not found, at Rest and be Thankful Farm. There is also 1 Foreign National casualty commemorated here. The cemetery covers an area of 3,267 square metres and is enclosed by walls or curbs.
The more important cemeteries concentrated into Wytschaete Military Cemetery were:
- REST AND BE THANKFUL FARM, KEMMEL, 1.6 kilometres North of Kemmel village, containing 23 graves of soldiers from the United Kingdom, all but one of whom fell in 1915 and thirteen of whom belonged to the 2nd Suffolks.
- R.E. (BEAVER) FARM, KEMMEL, near the Kemmel-Millekruisse road, which contained the graves of 18 Royal Engineers and four Canadian Engineers who fell in 1915-1917.
- The CEMETERY NEAR ROSSIGNOL ESTAMINET, KEMMEL, on the road to Vierstraat which contained 18 graves of soldiers from the United Kingdom (11 of the 1st Wiltshire Regiment), who fell January-April, 1915.
- SOMER FARM CEMETERY No. 2, WYTSCHAETE, which contained thirteen graves of soldiers from the United Kingdom, buried by the IXth Corps in June, 1917.
- GORDON CEMETERY, KEMMEL, on the road to Vierstraat, which contained 19 graves of soldiers from the United Kingdom. These fell in January-May, 1915, and 14 of them belonged to the 1st Gordon Highlanders.
Burials (Commonwealth War Graves Commission):
- United Kingdom: 511
- Canada: 19
- Australia: 31
- New Zealand: 7
- South Africa: 11
- Entirely Unidentified: 423
- Total Commonwealth: 1002
- Other Nationalities: 1