Madingley American Cemetery Cambridge, UK WW2 US Military Cemetery

Madingley American Cemetery and Memorial is situated in the Cambridgeshire countryside 3 miles outside of the city of Cambridge in the United Kingdom. Otherwise known as Cambridge Military Cemetery, Cambridge American Cemetery or simply Cambridge Cemetery, it is maintained by the American Battle Monuments Commission. Madingley American Cemetery is Britain's only World War Two American Military Cemetery.

***** Stop Press : Memorial Day 2015 *****

For the Cambridge American Cemetery – a ceremony will take place on Monday, May 25th at 11.00am with a ceremony to which everyone is invited. The ceremony will commence with a procession of the colour guard, followed by speeches, the presentation of floral tributes, and a missing man fly past. If you require any further information please contact the cemetery directly on
01954 210350 or contact them via email at cambridge@abmc.gov..


Welcome To Damian Lappin's Tribute
To Madingley American Cemetery

Thank you for taking the time to visit this website. I hope it serves as a valuable information resource as well as a tribute to the thousands of American servicemen and women buried at Cambridge American Military Cemetery. I have visited Madingley American Cemetery at many times throughout the year and always find it to be a haven of peace and tranquility. The gardens, monuments and lawns of the cemetery are kept in immaculate condition and the design of the entire site is both peaceful and beautiful, a fitting monument to those who so bravely gave their lives.

This website is a personal project of my own and is not connected in any way to the American Battle Monuments Commission

My main reason in developing this website was to provide some high resolution photography of Madingley American Cemetery taken at various times throughout the year which I hope relatives of those buried and remembered here will enjoy viewing. I appreciate that many people living in the United States and further afield may not have the opportunity to visit Madingley American Cemetery in person and I hope this site conveys the beauty and atmosphere of the cemetery to those who are unable to visit. If you wish to publish any of my photographs of Madingley American Cemetery either in print, electronically or otherwise please contact me to obtain written permission before doing so. I will be more than happy to help relatives and others undertaking non commercial projects related to the cemetery if I can do so. If anyone would like a photograph of a specific grave for private use, please contact me and I will photograph it on my next visit and email the photograph to you. I normally visit Madingley American Cemetery every couple of months. Many of the details in the descriptions on this site are based on the American Battle Monuments Commission official guide to Cambridge American Cemetery which can be downloaded from their website.

I can not imagine a more peaceful and beautiful resting place as Madingley American Cemetery for the thousands of servicemen buried here and as a monument to those honoured on the Tablets Of The Missing. Madingley Cemetery is indeed a fitting tribute to to these brave and gallant heroes who paid the ultimate price in defence of freedom and liberty.

A single red rose.

Damian Lappin - September 2008.

Introduction To Madingley Cemetery

Madingley American Cemetery is located in the heart of the Cambridgeshire countryside. Set in over thirty acres of beautifully maintained gardens and lawns, the cemetery contains the bodies of 3812 war dead from the world war two era. Every State of the Union is represented here including. In addition inscribed on the Tablets Of The Missing are the names of over 8000 American service men who lost their lives during the war but whose bodies were never recovered. The majority of those buried here were crew members of British based aircraft, however the bodies of some of those killed in North Africa, Normandy, the North Atlantic and various other places are also buried here.

The land that Madingley American Cemetery stands on was donated by the University of Cambridge and used as a temporary cemetery from 1943 onwards. In 1956 the site was dedicated as the only permanent World War Two American Military Cemetery in the United Kingdom.

The main entrance the site is set in the south east corner and compromises the visitors building containing the superintendents office and a visitors room where relatives may obtain information and sign the visitor's register. In front of the visitors building lies the Great Mall with a flagpole at one end and a series of rectangular reflecting pools lined with rose beds stretching out towards the Memorial Building and Chapel at the far end. The flagpole stands seventy two feet high and the base is inscribed with a quotation from John McCrae's poem "In Flanders Fields" which reads: "To you from failing hands, we throw the torch - be yours to hold it high".

Running parallel to the reflecting pools of the Great Mall are the "Tablets of The Missing" A series of large tablets inscribed with the names of over eight thousand servicemen killed during the war but who's bodies were never recovered. The Tablets Of The Missing are guarded by four giant statues depicting A Sailor, A Soldier, An Aircrew man and a Coast Guard. The reflecting pools are bordered by polyantha roses and the north side of the Great Mall is lined with a single row of double-pink hawthorn trees.

The graves themselves are laid out in in the shape of a fan and are arranged in seven curved plots containing 3909 headstones. Each grave plot is enclosed by a boxwood hedge and decorated with various trees. The site affords extensive views over the sloping Cambridgeshire countryside and on a clear day it is possible to see Ely Cathedral.

At the far end of the Mall The Memorial building contains The Chapel and Museum room. The roof of the Memorial building is covered by a giant mosaic which depicts ghostly aircraft accompanied by angels as they fly towards the resurrection, depicted by he Arc Angel trumpet in hand which adorns the wall of the chapel.

The interior wall of the museum is covered with a large map entitled "The Mastery of the Atlantic -The Great Air Assault" and depicts the principal sea routes between the United States and the United Kingdom and shows the types of ships used to transport men and munitions from the United States. Also depicted are anti submarine and European bombing operation routes and aircraft types. The map is thirty feet long and eighteen feet high and was designed by the American artist Herbert Gate.

The side of the memorial facing the graves is embellished with glass panels depicting the seals of the states of the Union. The doors to the Memorial building are made from teakwood and attached to them are bronze medals depicting various types of military equipment and navel vessels used during world war two by United States forces.

Would You Like To Contribute To This Site?

Help Keep This Site Running

I have operated this site since 2008 and have received many compliments and messages of thanks over the years. Unfortunately operating a non commercial website still takes a fair bit of time and money. In order to guarantee the future of this website could I ask that you help towards the running costs by contributing a small donation? Even a few dollars or a couple of pounds helps. Any contribution is very much appreciated.

Thank you so much. Enjoy the website! - Damian Lappin - 2014

The Memorial Building.
Madingley American Cemetery in autumn.
The chapel at Madingley American Cemetery.
The Tablets of the Missing.