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Remembered Today:

JBee

Somme visit underway!

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JBee

I found this at the side of the field. My heart wants it to be a relic, my head says agricultural part. Any ideas? I can take the disappointment ūüôÉ

 

Do not say it's a 50p coin! :D

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Edited by JBee

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JBee

Around 2pm I was at Delville Wood (visitor centre closed Mondays apparently) and had the place all to myself, which I prefer. Walked around the cememtery, left the first of many wooden crosses.

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Edited by JBee

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JBee

My first sight of row upon row of headstones. Seen photos, but to stand and see the sheer number, in one cemetery, of many, is humbling. 

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JBee

By 5pm I'm at Guillemont. The infamous Trones Wood nearby. Everything I have read about for the last couple of years is before me. 

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JBee

Looking from Guillemont cemetery towards Ginchy.

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JBee

Shells and other relics around the b&b. 

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JBee

And then a walk in Bernafay...

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JBee

Day 2

Walk through Bernafay wood then out to the Bernafay Cemetery. The contours of the land make it easy to see the directions of the advance.  This is where I saw the wild poppies, went to take a pic, then saw the shells/mortars. Another emotional moment. 

 

 

 

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JBee

After a quick stop in Flers, I headed to Thiepval, stopping at Pozieres en route.

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Edited by JBee

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JBee

Then stopped at Mouquet Farm. Really wanted to walk down the lane towards it, but guessed it was off limits.

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Edited by JBee

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JBee

And arrived at Thiepval around four, as the coaches were leaving. Again, pretty much had the place to myself. Not antisocial (am) but prefer solitude and quiet for visiting these places. 

One guy's name on the wall, from Sheffield...

 

John Henry Barrott.

 

He lived in the house where my mum in law lived. We have probably both drunk tea in the same front room.

Rest in Peace Pvte Barrott - and thank you.

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Edited by JBee

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JBee

Day 3 - Serre

 

The village that started this trip and the battalions who fell there, mainly lads from the Sheffield streets around where I now live. There are many terraced streets near my home and after looking on the brilliant web site 'A Street Near You' the names and details of many local soldiers came forward from the page. And there it began.  Some were from WW2  but I decided to concentrate my research on the local guys of the 12th Battalion Y&L (Sheffield City) from WW1 who were at Serre. 

 

One, in particular, lived very near my home and his parents are buried in our local cemetery, with his name also mentioned on their joint grave. His mother died in 1913 and Alfred was the only son, who had followed his father, William Alfred, into his accountancy practice, based in the city centre, behind the cathedral.  I still pass their home, a large Victorian detached house with the original front door, now painted a rich, dark blue. I told Alfred all this when I met him finally at Railway Hollow. I showed him the pictures of his parents' grave in Sheffield, with it's poppy cross and I placed one on his.  I told him his house still looked the same as when he left it and was still the best house on the street. I told him he was still mentioned  today, due to the inscription his father chose for his headstone, from a letter home that Alf had sent earlier that year. It wasn't until I followed the trail of Alfred Goodlad, private and bandsman, that I realised how many others also consider him (and all the others) really, rather special.

 

And here he is...

 

 

 

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Edited by JBee

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genegwf

Very nice photographs. Thanks for sharing and enjoy the remainder of your trip.

Gene

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Fattyowls
7 hours ago, JBee said:

It wasn't until I followed the trail of Alfred Goodlad, private and bandsman, that I realised how many others also consider him (and all the others) really, rather special.

 

I count myself in that category JB, due to the inscription on the grave; thank you for the back story and the photograph.

 

Pete.

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JBee

Serre continued..

No sign of the farmer, so all peaceful. Walked down the main road from Serre main cemetery towards the village, then back up the track to the memorial park and other cemeteries there.

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JBee

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Edited by JBee

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