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Overheard at Tyne Cot


Michelle Young
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I overheard a school party being told by a Belgian guide or teacher that the stone for Tyne Cot was taken from the White Cliffs of Dover.......... :angry2:

Michelle

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It takes all sorts I guess; the 'White Cliffs of Portland' would have been closer to the truth.

Apart from anything else, I would hope the person in question wasn't a geology teacher!

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Surely it can't have been? There would have been no white cliffs of Dover for the bluebirds to fly over in WW2.

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But not, I trust, by the various teacher members of this forum.

Wouldn't you have loved a teacher with a passion for the Great War? Someone who could bring to life the lives, objectives and formations of WW1 soldiers and their regiments.

How does it go? If you can read this, thank a teacher. Id you can read it in English, thank a soldier.

My favourite teacher was passionate about the injustice of aparthied in South Africa, I wonder if she realised how much she influenced the political thoughts of her class. She was supposed to teach us Geography, she wasn't passionate about that at all.

Sandie

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Thats nothing! We heard a teacher explaining to her pupils that an MM revealed after a New Zealand soldiers name stands for "Missing Maori" :doh: Strewth!!!

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I'll always be grateful to those who taught my wife history at Oakwood school Horley especially Andy Thompson for giving her such an appreciation of the Great War and the opportunity to visit the western front at an age when it made such an impression on her. Their enthusiasm for the subject has never left her. Years later, it's helped to give us a joint interest which has carried us through many fascinating trips to France and Belgium over the years. Just wish I'd had the chance to go when I was at school.

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We once went on a short tour led by a teacher who apparently knew everything and everyone on the Western Front. Poetry was presented as textbook history, and battlefield stops included reference to the little known race to the sea to protect shipping lanes in 1917.

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I Recall seeing in the museum located at Thiepval Cemetary a whole wall dedicated to the work of the CWGC it tells the storyof how the stones are chosen, inscribed and installed and how the weathered headstones are repaired and I recall if memory serves they are Portland stone.

Iain

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Unfortunately, this sort of thing is anything but unusual.

Some months ago I was invited to a dinner to hear a talk on the invasion of Luxembourg 1940; a subject which I have made a study of.

A very well known man gave the talk (I wasn't able to go... fortunately). An ex-student of mine was there and later asked me why his version of events was so at odds with my talks on the subject. I could ony say, "because he doesn't know what he is talking about".

I did see a long report of the talk, and about the only thing that was accurate was the there was a nazi takeover on the night of 9/10 May 1940. After that, nothing, but nothing was true.

But, I can't do anyhting. After all, he is a very well known man.

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Granddaughter no 2 has shared our obsession/passion from a young age, she is now 13. Came rushing home to say they had been called together at school and invited to show expression of interest in a battlefield tour in 2014 - a punishing schedule, checkpoint Charlie, a concentration camp, Paris and resistance monuments, various points on the Somme, eve at Menin Gate, Dover Castle, Imperial War museum, Cabinet War Rooms! She could hardly talk for excitement, only thing is, it is limited to 26 , with a ballot if too many!

Guess who will have to meet her at the Menin Gate or fund a visit with grandparents if the ballot goes pear shaped!

Cheers

Shirley

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Blimey, why don't they throw in Normandy, Armhem and the Italian campaign while they're about it? Sounds marvellous but a tad ambitious for me. I'm quite happy doing one battle at a time.

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Tell me about it! They must be thinking that is the way to get value for money. Gdaughter no 1 couldn't see much shopping in the list, so happy to leave younger sister to it.

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Granddaughter no 2 has shared our obsession/passion from a young age, she is now 13. Came rushing home to say they had been called together at school and invited to show expression of interest in a battlefield tour in 2014 - a punishing schedule, checkpoint Charlie, a concentration camp, Paris and resistance monuments, various points on the Somme, eve at Menin Gate, Dover Castle, Imperial War museum, Cabinet War Rooms! She could hardly talk for excitement, only thing is, it is limited to 26 , with a ballot if too many!

Guess who will have to meet her at the Menin Gate or fund a visit with grandparents if the ballot goes pear shaped!

Cheers

Shirley

If she has the passion that you have she will be really enthused by the Menin Gate Ceremony,my Daughter was there last year on a school trip which covered the battlefields of Flanders and the somme, she went thinking it would suck! but came back with a whole new outlook on history and the war. In fact I think she may try and hide in our suitcase when myself and the my wife go over in November.lol!

Iain

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Malcolm , my old primary schooll headmaster was a prisoner of the Japaneese , now he could make the toes of an 11 year old curl with tales of horror!........makes me the fine upstanding citzen I am today! ..(tick)

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is it any stranger than a bluebird flying over the White Cliffs of Dover?

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