"When you see the millions of the mouthless dead
Across your dreams in pale battalions go,
Say not soft things as other men have said,
That you'll remember. For you need not so."
Charles Hamilton Sorley
When in 1915 the trench lines on opposing sides of No Mans Land became continous, the Western Front was born. On the battlefields from Neuve Chapelle to the Hohenzollern, the remnants of the original B.E.F fought their last battles supporting their French allies in futile attempts to break the deadlock against an enemy who appreciated the worth of the spade and the artillery shell over the rifle and bayonet. Poorly equiped for trench warfare and woefully short of artillery guns and shells the British soldier died in their tens of thousands.
We start our 2015 calendar with a tour of the battlefields around the Aubers Ridge, the south western defence of the German held city of Lille. The tour encompasses the Battle of Neuve Chapelle, that witnessed the first advance of troops on to specific objects proceeded by artillery "lifts".The tour also includes the Battles of Aubers Ridge and Festubert, fought in support of the French Artois offensive
For our second tour of the year we visit Ypres and the German Gas Attacks of April & May 1915. The tour will include the exploits of the Canadian First Division, the defence of the Frezenberg & Bellewaarde Ridges and struggle for control of Hill 60.
We close 2015 with the centenary tour of the Battle of Loos; the baptism of Kitchener's Citizen Army. Visits include: the Double Crassier, a walk from the British front line in the footsteps of the 15th Scottish Division towards Hill 70, the Hohenzollern Redoubt and the Loos Museum.