Battle of Trekkopje

CENTENARY OF THE BATTLEOFTREKKOPJE 26 APRIL1915
Yesterday marked the centenary of the Battle of Trekkopje, a railway station some 75 kilometres from Swakopmund in Namibia, between the German and Allied Forces. The Allied Forces comprised mainly of Union Defence Force troops.It was one of the most important battles of the German South West African campaign of the First World War as after the battle the German forces went on the defensive until the surrender on 09 July 1915 North of Otavi. A memorial just outside Otavi marks the spot where the German forces offered their surrender which was later accepted by General Lois Botha. The Allied Forces included the following units:
2nd Regiment Transvaal Scottish
Kimberly Regiment
Witwatersrand Rifle
1st Rhodesia Regiment
Number 1 Squadron RNAS Armoured Car Division
South African Telephone & Postal Corps.Nine members of the Union Defence Force are buried in the Trekkopje Cemetery:
Captain F. Harrison. 7th Infantry (Kimberley Regiment).
Lieutenant W. M. Cameron. 8th Infantry (Transvaal Scottish).
Lieutenant F. Hollingsworth. Rhodesia Regiment.
Lance Corporal T. A Cameron. 7th Infantry (Kimberley Regiment).
Lance Corporal D. A. Filer. 7th Infantry (Kimberley Regiment).
Lance Corporal J. R. Wells. 7Th Infantry (Kimberley Regiment).
Private W. E. Anderson. 7th Infantry (Kimberley Regiment).
Private A. Lambie. 7th Infantry (Kimberley Regiment).
Private G. S. Reid. 8th Infantry (Transvaal Scottish).
There are also three German graves in the cemetery.

During a visit in January 2012 Alan Pateman-Jones, the then Director General of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission labelled the cemetery the “most isolated cemetery in the Commission’s care”.

The Escarpment Shellhole of the Memorable Order of Tin Hats (MOTH) planned a commemoration event over the weekend of 24 to 26 April 2015.

The South African Agency of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission is in the process of erecting new road signs indicating the cemetery as well as a visitor’s information panel at the cemetery.

Story for the South African Legion of Military Veterans by Charles Ross with photos by Charles Ross, the South African War Graves Project, McGregor Museum Kimberley and Google – Christian Stowasser.

Image by Michael St Maur Sheil

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