The Welsh graveyard is using technology to help visitors to understand the presence of these markers.
A cemetery in Wales behind St. Margaret’s Church in Bodelwyddan will now be adding QR codes to the Canadian war graves on that site in order to help visitors to understand why they are there.
Many people don’t know the history behind those buried under the markers.
Therefore, instead of setting up the cemetery with the traditional information plaques and other stands, the HistoryPoints project chose to use QR codes as a method of providing visitors with the information without the need for intrusive displays. This was considered to be an important step, as visitors have been confused by the presence of the Canadian war graves for many years.
The QR codes provided a subtle, affordable, and highly practical way to share the information.
Rhodri Clark, the founder of HistoryPoints, said that “For many visitors, the graves have been baffling,” adding that “We hope our QR codes will inform many people about what happened during the difficult winter of 1918-19. Anyone who reads the story as they stand beside the graves cannot fail to be moved by it.”
Most of the graves at the cemetery at St. Margaret’s Church are there to mark the site where Canadian soldiers were buried following the flu pandemic that struck near the close of World War I. That said, there are a number of Canadian soldiers interred there who died during the riots that occurred when the transport that had been designated for bringing them back to Canada was reallocated to American soldiers.
By scanning the QR codes in the cemetery, visitors to the site can use their smartphones or tablets to download the story – available in both English and French – which involves the 17,000 Canadian men and women at the end of World War I, who had been stationed at Kinmel Park camp, which is located nearby.
The organizers of the HistoryPoints project are hopeful that the QR codes will be just the trick for connecting with visitors and gradually building the overall experience of people who are interested in the subject and the history of the area. It is the intention of the organizers to continue to build on the information, eventually adding images and biographical details of the individuals buried there.