"They fought their way back like islands of Khaki in a sea of Grey".......Richard Holmes (riding the Retreat)
Our centenary tours commence on Wednesday 20th August 2014, when we visit the battlegrounds east of Mons, as the German First (von Kluck) and Second (Von Bulow) Armies plundered the Fortress's of Namur. At the confluence of the Rivers Sambre and Meuse, Von Bulow's Second Army fell on to Lanrezac's Fifth (French) Army, as Von Kluck's First Army fell like a scythe upon the B.E.F at Mons. Understanding the opening moves is key to understanding the Battle of Mons.
Our September tour will cover the period of the retreat from the battlefields of Mons, to south of the River Marne and the subsequent advance to the River Aisne; associated with the commencement of entrenched warfare. Visits will include the rearguard actions at Etreaux and Nery, the Memorial to the Missing at La Ferte Sous Jourre, the new French museum at Meaux, and the Chemin Des Dames.
Our final tour of the year will encompass many of the actions which are collectively known as the First Battle of Ypres. The tour will cover the actions of Corps commander's Pultney and Smith-Dorrien during the actions at La Bassee and Armentieres in early October 1914, culminating with visits to Ypres and the actions at Messines, Gheluvelt and Nonne Bosschen Wood.