Chinese Labour Corps Photobook

An incredible collection of candid photographs of the Chinese Labour Corps taken on the Western Front by Captain WJ Hawkings. More details here.

Memorial Fundraising Appeal Launched

Fundraising front page
Today we launch the memorial fundraising appeal. We are looking to raise £200,000 and hope to do so from organisations and individuals from across the UK. If you would like to help, then please visit our fundraising micro website.

Fundraising: Context and Update




Joint Exhibition of Artists and Calligraphers Fundraiser

Our thanks to a donation of £600 from Fuqing Yulong Ai Group and  £ 800 from the London School of Management Studies (LSMS) . Our fundraising activities continue:

新春新氣象,狗年旺旺旺!一戰华工建碑計劃感謝福清玉融愛心群£600 及 London School of Management Studies (LSMS) £800的捐助,其他認捐和籌款活動仍在進行中。三月十一日下午二時至五時中英文化交流學會及英國華人詩書畫學會在120 Lower Road London SW16 2UB (Surrey Quays 車站步行兩分鐘,附近也有停車場)舉行藝術家及書畫家聯展,演出及義賣捐募活動,歡迎各位朋友及對中國文化藝術有興趣的朋友蒞臨參加及支持!

March 11, 2018
120 Lower Road London SW16 2UB
(Surrey Quays station 2 mins. parking nearby)

The Sino-British Cultural Exchange Society and the British Chinese Poetry and Calligraphy Society are holding a joint artists and calligraphers exhibition

All welcome, please do support the event.

Spring Festival Generosity

We’re so happy to share a few examples of the wonderful responses we are getting to our fundraising efforts.

當英國各地華人團體紛紛慶祝春節的來臨,他們也沒有忘記為一戰華工建碑計劃捐助,英华中文学校師生和家長£690.50, 福建同鄉會£1,200, 英國天津同鄉會£500, 倫敦普通話簡體字學校師生和家長£500. 感謝大家的支持和衷心的祝頌建碑能早日實現!

When Chinese groups from all over Britain celebrated the arrival of the Spring Festival, they did not forget to donate money for the First World War Chinese Labourers Project. The teachers and students of Ying Wah Chinese School £690.50, the Fujian Association £1,200, the UK Tianjin Association £ 500, the London Putonghua Simplified Characters School teachers and students £500.

A heartfelt thanks to these and the many other groups and individuals who are making the dream come true through their generosity in gifts large and small.




Happy Chinese New Year


Building of the UK’s National Memorial to the Chinese Labour Corps Confirmed.

Three years into a campaign for a UK National Memorial to the Chinese Labour Corps, the Ensuring We Remember Campaign has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Chinese development company ABP (London) Investment Limited (ABP) for the memorial to be constructed as part of the centrepiece of ABP’s £1.7bn development of a new business district on the northern side of the Royal Albert Dock in Newham. John Miu, COO of ABP London said:,

“We are honoured to host the UK’s first public memorial to the Chinese Labour Corps on the site of Royal Albert Dock London, where we are constructing the premiere business gateway between China and the UK, and London’s next business hub. We are proud of the contribution made by the Chinese Labour Corps in supporting front line allied troops: it is crucial that future generations remember their sacrifice and contribution while we enjoy living and working in a time of peace. Therefore we have set aside £100,000 budget to ensure the memorial to be built on the site and the budget supports design, landscaping, lighting, foundation construction and planning and licensing.”

ABP has national and global backing to create a new business district with supporting residential, retail and leisure at the 35 acre Royal Albert Dock site, which was the epic centre of trade between UK and Asia 100 years ago. The building of the UK’s national memorial to the contribution made by Chinese workers to the Allied war effort of the First World War now means it will also be home to what is undoubtedly to become an iconic symbol of Chinese heritage in the UK. Steve Lau, Chair of the Ensuring We Remember Campaign, said:

“As ABP pushes forward in developing a future business district for London and the UK, it is fantastic that they also being so generous towards its past. Through ABP’s support, our campaign for a long overdue memorial to the Chinese volunteers who came to Britain’s assistance in her hour of need, but who were then almost completely forgotten enters into its final chapter. Ensuring we remember is no longer a dream, it is now set to become reality.”

The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) have long supported the efforts from within the Chinese community to commemorate the contribution made by Chinese labourers. Lord Bourne, Minister for Communities at (DCLG) noted:

“I am delighted that the campaign for the long overdue memorial to the brave men who served in Chinese Labour Corps has had such a tremendous impact.
“They formed the largest contingent of workers recruited for the war effort, but too little is known of the dangerous yet essential work they carried out on the Western Front.
“They came to Britain’s aid in her hour of need, so it’s right that we remember and honour their contribution and within a year we will see what promises to be a magnificent addition to London’s diverse cultural heritage sites.”

The Chinese Embassy in London has long supported the campaign for a memorial, and His Excellency, Ambassador Liu Xiaoming, remarked,

“The project will help everyone to understand the historical contribution of the Chinese Labour Corps, promote harmony between British Chinese and local communities and further China-Britain friendship.”

Wholehearted support has also been received from the Rt Hon Stephen Timms MP for East Ham, in which the memorial is now to be built, and has tabled an Early Day Motion in Parliament noting that the contribution made by the Chinese has yet to be fully recognised, and welcoming the building of the memorial at the Royal Albert Dock.

“It is regrettable that their toil and sacrifice were largely overlooked after the Great War, and have never properly been commemorated. A better tribute should be paid to their extraordinary contribution; their sacrifices helped deliver Britain’s victory. I warmly welcome the planned permanent memorial in ABP Royal Albert Dock.”

Cambrai and the Chinese Contribution

The centenary of the Battle of Cambrai has just passed. We have produced an infographic on Cambrai and the Chinese Contribution.


CLC Cambrai Infographic download

L’histoire des travailleurs chinois pendant la première guerre mondiale.

Exposition à Lille, à la MER.
Samedi 18 novembre à 15h

Les travailleurs chinois, oubliés de la Grande guerre, rencontre avec l’Historienne Li Ma, ce Samedi 18 novembre 2017 à 15h à la MRES de Lille – Organisation : L’Atelier d’Histoire Critique et les Amis Du Monde Diplomatique – Entrée libre


Les travailleurs chinois, oubliés de la Grande guerre.

Entre 1916 et 1922, sur la demande des autorités françaises et anglaises, en manque de main-d’oeuvre, 140 000 Chinois sont envoyés par leur gouvernement dans une Europe ravagée par la guerre, notamment dans le Nord-Pas-de-Calais. L’histoire de ces travailleurs qui ont dû s’adapter à de rudes conditions de vie et faire face au racisme des sociétés européennes les employant est largement méconnue.

“Pendant la Première Guerre mondiale, l’armée britannique utilisait une main-d’œuvre recrutée en Chine pour permettre d’avoir plus de soldats au front. À Boulogne, ils servaient notamment comme manœuvres pour décharger les navires au port. Ces travailleurs vivaient dans des conditions très difficiles jusqu’à ce qu’ils se mettent en grève le 5 septembre 1917. Le 74e Chinese labour Corp cesse le travail. Le général Douglas Haig, commandant en chef de l’armée britannique basé à Montreuil, ordonne une sévère répression. Les soldats tirent à vue : 27 Chinois non armés sont abattus dans les rues de Boulogne, 39 blessés et 25 emprisonnés.”

Depuis quelques années, des chercheurs et des associations s’attellent à remédier à cela. C’est notamment le cas, de l’historienne Li Ma, enseignante-chercheuse à l’Université du Littoral-Côte d’Opale et spécialiste de la question.

Fb : Atelier d’histoire critique
@ :

C’est le 18 Novembre 15h à la MRES,
Maison régionale de l’environnement et des solidarités
3 rue Gosselet
59000 Lille
Métro Lille Grand Palais
Source :



Dertien van Busseboom – The Busseboom Thirteen and Belgium’s Memorial to the Chinese Labour Corps.

Exactly one hundred years ago today thirteen members of the Chinese Labour Corps were killed when their camp received a direct hit during an air raid.

Quite some gunfire at night. At the Poeper a Chinese camp is hit by shellfire. Several yellow men are killed.

From the diary of local priest, Father van Walleghem

The Chinese casualties were buried near the Roobaertbeek, but later exhumed and transferred to Bailleul Cemetery.
We remember them:

CHAO PING WEN Labourer 29119
KUO YU HIS Labourer 28996
LAN SHU THE Labourer 28995
LI CHI MAO Labourer 29009
LI HSI SHUN Labourer 29073
LIU PING KUEI Labourer 29038
LIU WAN CHI Labourer 29147
LUAN CHENG TSENG Labourer 29149
MA HSIAO LIN Labourer 28957
SHAO CHEN CHIANG Labourer 29501
WANG CHANG HO Labourer 29992
WANG CHANG HO Labourer 29135
WANG YUNG CHUN Labourer 29029

On this, the centennial anniversary of that tragedy, a memorial to the Chinese labourers has been unveiled at the same spot in Poperinge. It is the first memorial in Belgium to the Chinese Labour Corps. France has two memorials, the first erected several decades ago. A third will be unveiled in Arras next month.

Of the countries directly involved, the UK is the only one that still has no public memorial to the Chinese Labour Corps, though our task to remedy this is getting closer to completion. Our congratulations to all those involved in the Poperinge memorial.



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