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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Cemetery


Maris

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Going to Paris next week and intend to go by train to Albert for the day. Can anyone tell me the best way to get to Flat Iron Copse from Albert? Is it within reasonable walking distance, should I get a taxi, or is there any public transport?

Also does anyone need a grave photo from there?

Maris

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Is it within reasonable walking distance, should I get a taxi, or is there any public transport?

It all depends on your definition of "reasonable"!

I'd say it is reasonable walking distance (about 7 km), but if you've only got a day, you might be pushing it a bit .

I don't know about public transport (I can't ever recall seeing a bus on any of my own meanders around the Somme battlefields - but then again, I wasn't looking for one) and I've always found taxis to be a little expensive, especially if you want them to hang around and wait for your return.

Personally, I think I'd hire a bike and cycle round.

Dave.

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Maris

It is a long walk. Paul will know more about public transport to the nearest village, probably Bazentin-le-Petit.

I think that a taxi or bicycle would be the best.

Good luck

Martin

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There is no public transport on the 1916 Somme battlefields, so it means hiring a bike from the tourist office near the basillica (a short walk from the station), or a taxi. Depending on how much time you want there, a return fair with lets say 15 mins at the cemetery will probably cost you around 50 Euros. One way from Albert to Courcelette has cost me as much as 20 Euros before, for a 8.5km journey. Walking will be impractical unless you have a full day and are fit, or plan to stay the night in Albert.

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Many thanks for the information. Cycling sounds interesting, especially as I haven't done that for some considerable time. It seems a lot will depend on the weather. As this is the first visit by a member of the family in 89 years I think the lad warrants a taxi fare, no matter how much it costs.

Maris

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As an alternative Maris, consider hiring a car in Paris and driving up to the Somme. It only takes about 90 minutes, and you will then have your own transport to visit not only Flat Iron Copse but the many other interesting sites in the area. A cheap hire car in Paris will probably cost about the same as a ticket on the TGV.

Cheers,

Mat

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Good suggestion Mat, but unfortunately a car is not an option this time. However a promise made many, many years ago needs to be kept now. I'm sure a taxi will be fine and if the weather is good a bike or a walk back would be pleasant. I'll post how I get on.

Maris.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Mission accomplished and for the benefit of anyone else wanting to pay just a short visit to one small cemetery, here are the details.

Trains from Paris Nord to Amiens run every 2 hours and take approx. 1hr.20mins. Amiens to Albert 20 mins. Timetables, cost and booking from www.sncf.co.uk. Trains clean, fast and on time.

Tourist Office in Albert very helpful and ordered taxi for us. Cost was 35 euros, but would have been about 12 euros but for the driver being unsure of the way, in spite of being given very good printed directions and a map courtesy of the CWGC.

A road blockage and consequent detour, together with the no doubt well meant

offer by 2 Englishmen to lead us there but who seemed to have more confidence than local knowledge, accounted for most of the discrepancy in price. Eventually the only woman in the party was allowed to navigate and we were there in 3 mins !!! Moral - Cut out the guess work and make sure the map is used.

We found the cemetery very well cared for, Albert a delightful little town - what a lot of flowers - the basilica beautiful and the museum fascinating. Not easy to find somewhere to eat though and our train left at 19.20. Would love to make a longer visit next time. Maris :rolleyes:

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  • 3 weeks later...

Very interesting. I would never of have thought of doing such a flying visit, but just goes to show it can be done !!

Well done Maris.

Cheers

Tim.

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