Located on the D5 - the ring road which circles Bayeux - the British cemetery sits on one side of the whilst the Bayeux Memorial stands opposite. There is actually no dedicated car park for the cemetery, however, a little further down the road opposite the Musée Mémorial de la Bataille de Normandie is a tree-lined grass verge. This is a favourite spot for following the French tradition of just leaving the car anywhere and hoping for the best.
Although Bayeux saw less fighting than other parts of the region, it was the first French town of importance to be liberated. Bayeux War Cemetery is the largest Commonwealth cemetery of the Second World War in France and contains burials brought in from the surrounding districts and from hospitals that were located nearby.
The Cemetery, completed in 1952, contains 4,144 Commonwealth burials of which 338 are unidentified. There are also over 500 war graves of other nationalities, the majority being of German origin.
The Bayeux Memorial stands opposite the cemetery and bears the names of more than 1,800 men of the Commonwealth land forces who died in the early stages of the campaign and have no known grave. They died during the landings in Normandy, during the intense fighting in Normandy itself, and during the advance to the River Seine in August.
The Cemetery contains the grave of a single Victoria Cross recipient. Corporal Sidney Bates of 1st Battalion Royal Norfolk Regiment was posthumously awarded the British Army's highest honour for his actions near Sourdeval on 4th August 1944 in an engagement with the 10th SS Panzer Division.