In late April this year, we’ll be boarding the Eurostar again, but this time heading to a new location – the northern French city of Arras. The weekend will see the six of us visiting the memorials and preserved trenches at Vimy Ridge on the Saturday. The Vimy Memorial is Canada’s largest overseas National Memorial (pictured above). It commemorates more than 11,000 men of the Canadian Expeditionary Force killed during the First World War in France and who have no known grave.
This year’s tour – Leger’s All Quiet On The Western Front - began at the more civilised time of 7.30am, with a smaller party than usual – just myself and Mike Abbott - travelling to Belgium by train. For the first stint to London we enjoyed the first-class breakfast catering facilities of Virgin Trains. After sampling a brew at Kings Cross it was on to St. Pancras to catch the Eurostar to Lille. At Lille all of the Leger tour party who had travelled by Eurostar were transferr
Well, it’s less than two weeks now until we head back aboard the good old cross-Channel ferries for our latest tour - The Underground War. We've now received the full itinerary, which is as follows: Day Two We begin our tour in Flanders where tunnelling for the British Army began in 1915. At Hill 60, one of the most mined sites near Ypres, we see evidence of the craters and learn the story of the tunnellers, also visiting the mighty Caterpillar Crater. We then travel via the
Unfortunately, due to lack of numbers, our trip to the Somme in April has been cancelled. The good news is that we have been able to switch to another excellent Leger tour departing the same weekend, so this year’s trip will now be: Tunnellers on the Western Front - The Underground War This tour looks at the extensive use of tunnelling and mines throughout Belgium and northern France during the Great War, and includes visits to several sites around Flanders, plus a day on the
The British Army's blackest day The year 2016 marks the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme, so the choice of tour this time around was an obvious one to make, and we’ll be heading to northern France in April. The main focus of the tour will be the disastrous First Day of the Somme, following the line of the attacks on 1st July 1916 which cost the British and Commonwealth troops a horrifying 57,470 casualties, of whom 19,240 men were killed. Battlefield visits will i
Thiepval Memorial, 2008... Overwhelmed by the sheer scale of the Thiepval Memorial, which holds the names of 72,195 British and Commonwealth troops listed as missing after the Battle of the Somme. Along with the Menin Gate in Ypres, Thiepval is probably the most impressive - certainly in terms of size - of the memorials you're likely to encounter on a battlefield tour. Now consider the fact that the Menin Gate holds the names of another 54,896 Commonwealth soldiers who lost t