just received this from a friend:
MAJOR GONVILLE BROMHEAD'S GRAVE
On 31 January this year, the Independent on Sunday ran an excited article headlined ‘Rorke’s Drift hero’s grave lies in ruins.' A dramatic photograph of Major Gonville Bromhead's tomb at Allahabad, with its marble cross toppled off its plinth and broken in two accompanied the article. 'Last resting place of soldier portrayed by Michael Caine in "Zulu" lies mouldering and desecrated.' it went on. The journalist, Jonathan Owen, contacted BACSA (British Association For Cemeteries in South Asia) for comments and was told that the damage to the grave was more likely to have been caused by an animal straying into the cemetery than a resentful Zulu who had waited 131 years to take revenge. But it wouldn't have made such a good story. BACSA Council member Lieutenant General Menezes contacted the Sub-Area Commander, Allahabad, because the cantonment lies within the jurisdiction of the Indian Army. The Brigadier in charge immediately went to the cemetery and personally interviewed the mali (gardener) and chowkidar (watchman) who both confirmed that the tomb had been damaged by neelgai, the substantially built Asian antelope. Within days the tomb was expertly restored by the Army. The toppled cross was eased back onto the plinth, and the break, just below the arms of the cross, was cemented together. The tomb was cleaned, so that the veins of the marble are visible again, and the inscription carefully re-lettered in black. Both BACSA and Brigadier David Bromhead, the great, great nephew of the hero, have offered financial assistance, but for the moment nothing else is needed, except perhaps railings around the tomb to prevent further antelope antics. The inscription reads ‘In memory of Major Gonville Bromhead VC 2nd Battn The South Wales Borderers (24th Regiment) born 29 August 1845 died at Allahabad 9th February 1891. This stone was erected by his brother officers of both battalions in token of their esteem.’ Interestingly the standard reference works give his death as 1892, although the inscription clearly states 1891. Bromhead died from typhoid at Camp Dabhaura, Allahabad, one of Britain’s greatest heroes of the nineteenth century.
Re-produced from Chowkidar the newsletter of British Association For Cemeteries in South Asia dated Autumn 2010