The creation of a 20-hectare industrial park on the exact location of the third battle of Artois (25th September 1915) provided an opportunity to study a section of the battlefield, revealing the presence of several concrete machine gun nests as well as a network of trenches marked on various contemporary French and German maps.
Further exploration conducted during the earth levelling and demining work turned up the intact or fragmented remains of 26 French and German soldiers who took part in this battle. The researchers were able to identify approximately a quarter of these soldiers, belonging to the 50th Infantry Regiment. Those identified included company commander Lt. Jean Tessier (enlisted in Saintes), sergeant André Léger, privates second class Lucien Labat and Henri Faux (enlisted in Périgueux), Martin Dujardin (enlisted in Limoges), and Gaston Basset (enlisted in Béthune). They are now interred at the national military cemetery at Lorette. It is more than likely that discoveries of this nature will be made during future developments. This project presented a rare opportunity to study the evolution of a battlefield, over an area of 20 hectares which had been historically protected, examining the burial practices of both armies in a context of intense fighting and observing the way both parties treated the remains of friends and enemies ‘lost in combat’.