World War 1 Batlefields Tour

Myself and two friends, one who lost 6 great uncles in the carnage, went over to France and Belgium to see the sights of the slaughter. Driving past Cemetery after Cemetery gives an idea of the horrendous losses but visiting actual battlefield memorials like Vimy Ridge and the Menin Gate in Ypres really grabs at the throat and makes you feel quite humbled.

At the Menin Gate, at 8 PM, 365 days a year since 1928, except for the period of occupation during WW2, a ceremony of rememberance is carried out.

A link to the Menin Gate

A Link to Vimy Ridge Memorial

3 Replies

  • Just thought I'd say that I know what you mean. I went on a school trip to the battlefields a few years back- Ypres, the Somme amongst others. It is almost unbelievable the amount of cemeteries. And the Menin Gate at the Last Post is something I dont think I will forget in a hurry.....

  • Having never been that interested in history i was absolutely shocked as to how going to Normandy and visiting sites related to D day and the WW 2 affected me. I was reduced to tears in a number of places especially at Arromanches , Juno beach and Point D 'Hoc.

    I also found it very frustrating that so many people who had come to these places could also be so disrespectful, with graffiti, not keeping to allocated paths and even urinating in gun emplacements. I also found the idea of going on a coach tour round a cemetery very hard to deal with , these places to me are very personal and not really the place for huge group tours.

    Since returning I now have a keen interest to know more about both WW1 AND WW2 and would love to go to Ypres and such places. I wish i had been toaught more at school too.

  • My Great Grandfather lost his life at Ypres. He was an officer and so got a proper grave and all his belongings sent back which included his pocket diary a bit of shrapnal had gone so far through it. Strange but true the last day damaged was the day he died the next day was unwritten on and un-marked by war. I visited his grave left some flowers from the his great grandchildren and a letter telling him what a wonderful man the son (my Grandfather) he never saw was. I stayed for the Last Post at the Menin gate and watch a couple of young squadies with wreathes for their regiment sob uncontrolably, I was no better, all those names someones father, son, brother, uncle etc. Every child should visit the Menin Gate if they did there would be no more war.

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