This website covers a little-known subject, which is how the graves, cemeteries and memorials of the British commemorative programme, now under the care of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission, came to be where they are, and how the identity of the people in those graves was established or confirmed.

The focus is chiefly upon Western Europe, where the vast majority of casualties in the RAF occurred.

The story begins after D-Day, 6 June 1944, when the British Army and the RAF began an immense operation on behalf of the dead or missing of all nationalities who had served with the British forces.

The three main aims of the operation were:

  • to discover what had happened to the missing
  • to honorably bury the dead
  • to commemorate those who could not be found

The work included enemy soldiers, who as far as possible were treated as equals.