The true meaning of ANZAC Day goes beyond the anniversary
of the landing at Gallipoli in 1915. It is a day for us to remember those who
served and died in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations.
Poppies at the Somme
was for us, when (for the anniversary of the Battle of the Somme) we travelled the Circuit of Remembrance (the route of the Somme
battlefields in France) including visits to Villers-Bretonneux and (recognising my Welsh heritage) the Welsh Dragon Memorial at Mametz Wood.
View from the memorial tower at Villers-Bretonneux
At many of the memorials, we were the only visitors.
Cemetery at Villers-Bretonneux
peace and tranquility of the cemeteries was quite spiritual.
Welsh Dragon Memorial at Memetz Wood
During our travels, the media had reported the ‘discovery’ of
a mass burial site of several hundred British and Australian World War I soldiers, in a field
co-operation took another step forward on the day of our visit to Fromelles. We speak limited French, but were able to haltingly ask for directions to the
field, from a very generous-spirited French grandmother (who spoke no English).She patiently comprehended our efforts at sign language interspersed with
broken French-English, and in return gave us detailed directions to the field (in super-fast
French), which somehow we were able to comprehend. Thus, we found Fromelles.
Finding the Fromelles site
The Fromelles site
Original Fromelles plaque
Finding Fromelles, and visiting the memorials throughout the Somme, were poignant
reminders of the great sacrifices made by those who serve and die in War.
Laying a posy of wildflowers at the Welsh Dragon Memorial