Thursday, January 18, 2018

World War One Battlefields 100 Years On

The scarred landscape of the Newfoundland Memorial Park, Beaumont Hamel, part of the Somme battlefield. The battle began on 1 July 1916 and ended in a muddy quagmire in mid-November, the Allies having advanced only five miles (8km). The Newfoundland Regiment, nearly 800 men, was virtually wiped out on the first day.

Destroyed observation post at the Ouvrage de Thiaumont is witness to the sheer fury of German artillery fire - the cupola was 10in thick and weighed seven tons before it was blown apart.

Rifle ammunition clips are seen on the ground in Argonne where about 500 men of the American 77th Division were isolated by the Germans in October 1918. Nearly 200 were killed in action and approximately 150 went missing or were taken prisoner before the remaining men were rescued.

Champagne Battlefield grave memorial. This is probably the last battlefield burial site memorial left intact on the Western Front, with the soldier's equipment left on the grave, along with a plaque placed there by his father in 1919.

The battle of Belleau Wood took place in June 1918 as the German army pursued a spring offensive, pushing against US positions. Eventually the US Marines cleared the woods, though not without suffering the worst losses their unit had seen up until that time.

The Masurian Lakes on the Eastern Front where the German 8th Army under Hindenburg clashed with the Russian 1st Army.

Unexploded shells uncovered by ploughing near Munich Trench Cemetery in the Somme await collection by the authorities.

On 7 June 1917, the British Second Army, under the command of Gen Herbert Plumer, launched the Battle of Messines, one of the bloodiest clashes of World War One. The battle had been months in the planning, and centred on the strategically important Messines Ridge in Belgium.

An unexploded shell lies amid the mud of Passchendaele.

The St Symphorien Military Cemetery in Mons, Belgium, is the final resting place of the first British soldier killed during the conflict as well as Commonwealth and German soldiers who were killed in the last days and hours of the war four years later. The site was created when the German army exhumed the bodies of both German and British soldiers who had been killed at Mons and buried in local graves.

Newfoundland Memorial Park Beaumont-Hamel, France
Ouvrage du Thiamont Battlefield
Verdun, France

Lochnagar Crater
Somme, France

Butte de Vauquois
Argonne, France

 St Symphorien Cemetery
Hainaut, Belgium

View from Cavernes des Dragons southwards
over La Vallee Foulon towards French positions

1 comment: