Newmarket tour of the Battlefields of Ypres and the Somme, 14 to 18 October 2004.


Leaving Rosyth, passing under the Forth rail bridge. 14th October 2004. Looking back at the Forth road bridge. Our Newmarket tour party arriving at the "In Flanders Fields  Museum" in Ypres. Ypres Cloth Hall (Town Hall), and the Cathedral. All Ypres was flattened in the 1914-18 war and then rebuilt much the same as previously. The ruins of the Cathedral and Cloth Hall during First World War. The market square in Ypres. Shells exploding in the market square in Ypres in WWI. Fine buildings in the square, all rebuilt after the war. The Cloth Hall in Ypres. Note the spaces for statues between the windows. Close-up of the replaced statue remains. The rebuilt Cathedral. The Cathedral spires can be seen fo miles around Ypres. Esseax Farm Feild Dressing Cemetery. German cemetery. 16 German soldiers buried together. One of innumerable such graves in the Cemetery. Some of the German graves, with remains of two pill boxes on the right. More multi graves in the German Cemetery. A huge mass grave in the German Cemetery. "The Sleeping Soldier" Canadian War Memorial. "The Sleeping Soldier" Canadian War Memorial. Uncle Reg Thomson was probably in this location as he said that he was in the first gas attack serving with the Highland Light Infantry. The Menin Gate Last Post Ceremony at Ypres - http://www.lastpost.be/mainpage.htm - http://www.fylde.demon.co.uk/menin.htm Buglers playing the Last Post Ceremony, as on every night at 8p.m. at the Menin Gate in Ypres. The Canadian Memorial Park of Beumont-Hamel. A preserved battlefield of the Somme. Canadian lines in the foreground, German lines beyond. The front line. The solitary petrified "Danger Tree" remaining from the battlefield in no mans land. Note the shell holes and think of mud and more mud. Y Ravine Cemetery, but  this area was occupied by the Germans during the battles. Approaching the Greman front line, just a very few hundred yards below the British and Canadian front line seen in the distance. The "Danger Tree" is in far middle left with other isolated trees now. The German front line. The supply line of the Germans from Y ravine below to their front line . Memorial to a Scottish Regiment - not sure which one though. Hunters Cemetery mass geave. Mass grave of Hawthorn Ridge Cemetery in the Canadian Memorial Park. If only you could see and read this properly; it shows the horrific battlefield site we visited in the remarkable Canadian Memorial Park. The Teipval Memorial to British and French troops on the Somme. Theipval Cemetery with French graves on the left and British graves on the right. The Roman Catholic Cathedral in Albert rebuilt after the war, Uncle Alec was killed not far from here and is buried at the Forecville cemetery. Memorial at a preserved crater of a land mine explosion. Memorial at the opposite side of the land mine crater to a British soldier found there in 2000. The mine was tunnelled from the area od the wood in the distance by the British. The land mine crater. I'm not sure, but think this may have been the "Hawthorn mine" which went off early and was the scene of the subsequent horrendous battle. Delville Wood Cemetery of the British and South Africans. The only remaining tree to survive in this large woodland battle site of Delville Wood. The war museum at Peronne. The magnificent Canadian war memoriak at Vimy Ridge. The German line was on top of this ridge which was tunnelled through a distance of some 5 miles and attacked successfully from the rear.<br />http://www.fylde.demon.co.uk/vimy.htm The preserved battlesite all around the monument. The German occupied area behind Vimy Ridge. The preserved and restored Canadian front line. The Canadian front line looking across a land mine crater to the German fron line, no more than 100 yards away. Entrance to Tyne Cot Cemetery on the Ypres salient. The largest British war cemetery in the world. Uncle Tom is commemorated here. Click from this view to the next which follows to span over about half of the cemetery. This is taken from the location of the panel with uncle Tom's name on it. The huge cemi-circle of comemorative panels behind the graves. The huge cemi-circle of comemorative panels behind the graves of unknown soldiers in the foreground. One of these may be uncle Tom's grave, but more likelyr he may still lie in Flander's fields. Uncle Tom, Lance Corporal T.E. Rushworth, of the Coldstream Guards, is commemorated here. He was killed on the 9th October 1917 and has no known grave. It is understood that he was sitting around a fire with other soldiers when a shell landed and exploded amongst them, blowing them to bits. Uncle Tom's commemorative panel is fourth from the right in the bay of panels at the far left at the rear of Tynecot Cemetery. The location of the end bay panels. Again a distant view of the left end bay panels. The cemetery cross is where a German machine gun post was located. Looking across to Ypres in the far distant mist from Tynecot Cemetery. The British front line was behind the far farm building. Think of these fields then as mud and shellholes all the time. Looking from the German gun observation  position on Hill 62 towards Ypres in the distance. Trenches in Sanctury Wood. Brandhoek's New Military Cemetery The traditional stone alter inscribed "Their name liveth for evermore" at Brandhoek's New Military Cemetery. The grave of one of only three persons ever awarded the Victoria Cross twice - Capt. N.C.Chavasse, V.C. and Bar, M.C. at  Brandhoek's New Military Cemetery.<br />http://www.chavasse.u-net.com/chavasse.html The grave of one of only three persons awarded the Victoria Cross twice - Capt. N.C.Chavasse, V.C. and Bar, M.C. at  Brandhoek's New Military Cemetery.<br />http://www.chavasse.u-net.com/chavasse.html Poperinge in Belgium where troops from the front line could have a short break. This is where we visited Talbot House - http://www.talbothouse.be/Engels.htm - the home of TocH. My cabin on the excellent Rosyth/Zeebrugge ferry of Seafast Ferries - http://www.directferries.co.uk/superfast_ferries.htm