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World War I Memorials in France


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A Tour of New World War I Memorials in France

'Cobbers' is the striking statue commemorating the devastating loss of so many Australians at the Battle of Fromelles, fought in July 1916. You come across it driving into the little village of Fromelles.

© Mary Anne Evans

World War I Memorials are scattered across northern France and are well known and much visited. So it comes as a surprise to learn that new sites and new memorials from World War I are still being discovered and built, nearly a century after 'the war to end all wars.' The history of World War I has not yet been definitively written and it is doubtful if it every will be. There is a real compulsion to understand and come to terms with World War I which has not receded with time. It comes from the feeling that we should never forget such a horrifying war but it's also very much due to both local and international research.

The main battles of World War I were around Ypres in Belgium and a tour of World War I battle sites often starts there. But there's plenty to see further south in France around the attractive towns in the area.The discovery of 250 bodies around Fromelles has led to a new cemetery; there's a new memorial currently being constructed to Wilfred Owen, the poet who captured the 'Pity of War', and one individual who refused to give up in his search for a World War I tank now displays the Mark IV weapon in a barn at Flesquière.

Day Trip or Overnight?

This mini-tour of three new World War I sites takes you from Lille south west to Fromelles, south to Flesquières and then east to Ors. You can easily do this in a day from Lille , Arras or Cambrai.

Alternatively, make this an overnight trip and stay at the Chateau de Ligny hotel in Ligny-en-Cambresis near Cambrai.

World War I History

World War I - Battle of Arras, 1917
World War I - An Overview

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