Cemeteries and Memorials in Suvla

Cemeteries and Memorials in Suvla
Green Hill Cemetery 
Green Hill Cemetery is a Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemetery located near Suvla Bay, Gallipoli, Turkey.

Green Hill, to the east of Suvla Bay, was captured on 7 August but no further advance was made from this point. Green Hill Cemetery (Identified: 382, Unknown: 2,472, Special Memorials: 117) was made after the Armistice when isolated graves were brought in from the battlefields of August 1915 and from small burial grounds in the surrounding area. Among these was a cemetery at Scimitar Hill, containing 520 graves, almost all unidentified.

Green Hill and Chocolate Hill were names given by Allied troops taking part in the landing at Suvla Bay in August 1915 to parts of a hill called in Turkish Yilghin Burnu and which rises 52 metres above sea level from the eastern shore of the salt lake. The hill was captured the day after the landing, on 7 August 1915, but remained on the front line until the Allied withdrawal from the area in late December.

The cemetery was built on the hill after the Armistice when graves from the battlefield and small burial grounds nearby were consolidated into it.

Lala Baba Cemetery 

Lala Baba, a low hill between the southern side of Suvla Bay and the salt lake, was stormed by two Yorkshire regiments on the early morning of 7 August 1915. Lala Baba Cemetery (Identified: 147, Unknown: 53, Special Memorials: 16), situated on a low hill to the south of Suvla Bay, was formed after the Armistice from smaller cemeteries and isolated graves in the area. The cemetery is reached along a 4km track which is soft and sandy in parts and a 4-wheel drive vehicle is required.

Several months into the campaign, additional troops were landed at Suvla, just North of the Anzac sector and attacks launched simultaneously from the existing positions. The Suvla landing was intended to capture high ground around the bay, but delays caused by indecision and confusion allowed the defending Turks to reinforce and few of the objectives were achieved.

The cemetery is sited on a small hill, Little Lala Baba, half a mile southwest of a larger, 160 high hill called Lala Baba. Lala Baba was captured on the morning of 7 August 1915, the day after the Suvla Bay Landings, . The cemetery was constructed after the Armistice from isolated graves and the concentration of burials from nine surrounding cemeteries. As well as named grave markers, 53 markers are unnamed and special memorials commemorate 16 soldiers thought to be buried in the cemetery but whose graves have not been identified.

Azmak Cemetery
Azmak Cemetery (Identified: 334, Unknown: 684, Special Memorials: 56) and Hill 10 Cemetery (Identified: 493, Unknown: 150, Special Memorials: 56) were both created after the Armistice from burials in small cemeteries, battlefields and isolated graves. These cemeteries result from the operations in the north of Suvla when attempts were made to take the Kiretch Tepe ridge and the high ground to the east. Among the unknowns at Azmak are 114 members of the famous Sandringham Battalion of the Norfolk Regiment, mostly employees of the Royal estate at Sandringham, who died on 12 August 1915. It is on the south side of Azmak Dere, from which it takes its name, a small ravine which runs into the salt lake at Suvla Bay. Special memorials record the names of 53 British and 3 Newfoundland soldiers buried in the cemetery but whose graves are not positively identitied. 

Amongst the graves are 115 men of the 1/5th (Territorial) Battalion of the Norfolk Regiment, of which the names of only two are known. The battalion, which included a company recruited from workers from the Sandringham House Royal estate, suffered heavy losses on 12 August 1915 and a myth grew up that the unit had advanced into a mist and simply disappeared. However the remains of many of them were found after the Armistice and interred in the cemetery. In 1999 a TV film, All the King's Men was made about the incident.

Mustafa Kemal later became the first president of Turkey, known as Ataturk, or father of the Turks. His words are inscribed on a memorial at Anzac Cove;
"Those heroes that shed their blood and lost their lives; You are now lying in the soil of a friendly country. Therefore rest in peace. There is no difference between the Johnnies and the Mehmets to us where they lie side by side here in this country of ours. You, the mothers, who sent their sons from far away countries, wipe away your tears; your sons are now lying in our bosom and are in peace. After having lost their lives on this land they have become our sons as well."