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A cross at the entrance to the site bears the words, 'Peace to men of goodwill', an aspiration shared by the VDK in their motto, 'Reconciliation above the graves'. Intent on fighting German and Austro-Hungarian rule in their native countries, Czechoslovak and Polish immigrants living in and around Paris at the outbreak of the war were quick to enrol in the French Army and take part in the Second Battle of Artois in May Standing opposite the memorial to the soldiers of the Nazdar Company which marks the entrance to the Czechoslovak Cemetery, the Polish Memorial bears the motto 'Za wolnosc nasza i wasza' which means 'For our freedom and yours'.

United for the first time in a single army corps, the 4 Canadian Divisions of the Allied Army launched an attack on the heavily-defended Vimy Ridge on 9 April The officer in charge of burials used a mine crater at the foot of the ridge to inter the one hundred soldiers who were killed in the fighting. Today the burial grounds of Lichfield Crater and Zivy Crater are beautifully gardened although they still retain their circular shape, a unique feature among the Commonwealth War Cemeteries. Destroyed along with the rest of the village in the fighting of spring , Saint Lawrence Church was rebuilt ten years later using a brand new material: The church contains stained-glass memorial windows which show Christ kissing the forehead of a dying soldier and views of Lorette Spur Cemetery and the old church tower.

Before the war there was a house in Souchez named Cabaret Rouge. The house was destroyed with the rest of the village however its name lives on in the war cemetery which was created in by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission to concentrate the graves of the burial grounds in the region. Situated between two war cemeteries, one French and the other German, Cabaret-Rouge Cemetery today contains 7, Commonwealth burials of the Great War, more than half of them unidentified.

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The peaceful fields at the foot of Vimy Ridge belie the strategic importance of the position in times of war. In May the Moroccan Division gained a foothold on the ridge after much fighting in the ravine below, since named 'Zouave Valley'. Opened by the British Army in May , Zouave Valley Cemetery suffered shelling to such an extent that some of the graves in the cemetery could not be formally identified after the war.

These now bear the inscription 'Buried near this spot'. The remarkable bronze statue on the monument dedicated to 'glory of the Barbot Division' is the effigy of General Ernest Barbot whose bravery and humanity acquired him the reputation of 'a good knight' among the French ranks. In October , at the head of the 77th Infantry Division, he also gained the sobriquet the 'Saviour of Arras'. He is buried on Lorette Spur in a common, soldier's grave.

In mid, French troops succeeded in taking Lorette Spur but failed to secure Vimy Ridge; in the fighting the village church of Ablain-Saint-Nazaire was reduced to rubble. At the end of the war it was decided to preserve the ruins as a 'testament'. Instead of rebuilding at great cost, the French authorities approved the construction of a new church which was completed in Today the Old Church continues to remind us of the horrors of the Great War and the vagaries of the Reconstruction.

The monument 'to the glory of General Maistre and the 21st Army Corps' stands on the probable location of the command post where the French laid plans for the taking of Lorette Spur during the Second Battle of Artois. In May , after three days of hand-to-hand fighting the French 21st Army Corps finally took the German position next to the old chapel of Our Lady of Loretto. They had liberated the spur but the village of Souchez below it remained in German hands until the following September. Loos Memorial, which encircles Dud Corner Cemetery, immortalizes the names of the 20, soldiers of the British Army who have no known grave.

Most of these soldiers were killed at the Battle of Loos in late Among them was the only son of the famous writer Rudyard Kipling. The author of The Jungle Book never got over the loss, as can be clearly felt in his Epitaphs of the War wherein he wrote the lines, 'If any question why we died, Tell them, because our fathers lied'. In October the British Army in Flanders was reinforced with troops arriving from India who would take part in a number of battles in the region, including the Battle of Neuve-Chapelle where 4, men of the Indian Corps were lost.

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With its metre high column flanked by two tigers and topped with the Star of India, the Neuve-Chapelle Memorial is the only place of remembrance on the Western Front to commemorate the sacrifice made by Indian soldiers during the Great War. Intent on showing its support for the Allies, the young Portuguese Republic organized an expeditionary force in Portuguese soldiers were placed under British command and assigned to the front between Laventie and Festubert in French Flanders.

On 9 April the Portuguese suffered numerous casualties during the German offensive on Lys Plain. Richebourg is the only Portuguese war cemetery on the front and the final resting place for the 1, Portuguese soldiers who died in Richebourg War Memorial shows a French soldier of the First World War draped in the national flag and lying on a bier. This kind of representation, similar to the recumbent effigy of a medieval knight, is rarely found among the 36, war memorials which pay tribute to the 1,, victims of the Great War in France. Although mourning and bereavement were sometimes referred to on the memorials, statues representing death were usually avoided in favour of themes such as heroism, nation and victory.

The memorial bears the names of 13, British officers and men who fell in fighting in the neighbourhood from October to September and 'to whom the fortune of war denied the known and honoured burial given to their comrades in death'. Throughout the war, Aubers Ridge provided the German Army with a strategic advantage over the British positions twenty metres below it on Lys Plain. Dozens of concrete fortifications and bunkers, which can still be seen today from the RD road, were built as part of an efficient network of observation and command posts and artillery emplacements which rendered the ridge impregnable.

The statue in Memorial Park shows Sergeant Fraser carrying a wounded comrade out of no man's land in the aftermath of the Battle of Fromelles, an operation launched to divert attention away from the major Allied offensive on the Somme. The nineteenth of July shall ever be remembered in Australia as the day their soldiers first fought in action on European soil during the First World War and one of the country's most tragic episodes which resulted in 5, Australian casualties.

Two mass graves accommodate the bodies of more than unknown soldiers and the memorial bears the names of 1, Australians reported lost in action. In seventy of these lost soldiers were identified from remains uncovered during archaeological excavations in nearby Pheasant Wood.


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Encircled by a moat and crowned with weeping willows, Le Trou Aid Post Cemetery is one of the most beautiful Commonwealth cemeteries in the region and the last resting place of soldiers who fell on the 'Forgotten Front'. Le Maisnil in , Aubers and Loos in , and Fromelles in They opened a cemetery nearby to bury their soldiers who died in the field or in the hospitals set up in the town.

British victims of the fighting in the summer of were initially buried in the town's graveyard but as space ran out they were later buried in the German cemetery. Today almost white Commonwealth headstones can be seen standing alongside the black crosses of the 5, German graves. Of all the graves in Annoeullin Cemetery one in particular stands out: Transferred to the Royal Flying Corps in , Ball was the leading Allied ace with 44 victories when, on 7 May , his plane crashed after a battle with the squadron of Lothar Von Richthofen brother of the Red Baron.

The Germans claimed a victory while the British cited mechanical failure. Recovered by the people of Annoeullin, the body of Albert Ball was laid to rest with military honours. On Wervicq 'Mountain' stands a German war memorial showing a nurse caring for a bedridden soldier. Moved to another location on the 'Mountain' in , the German cemetery today contains the graves of 2, soldiers including eight Austro-Hungarians.

On 4 November the town of Le Quesnoy was liberated by New Zealand troops who scaled the Vauban fortifications using simple wooden ladders. Fastened to the rampart wall, the New Zealand Memorial not only depicts the events of that memorable operation it also shows the Kiwi national emblem: Ninety years on from the Armistice of the First World War, the liberation of Le Quesnoy remains one of the most significant events in the history of the New Zealand Army.

Only the monstrous anger of the guns,' wrote Wilfred Owen in the opening of 'Anthem for Doomed Youth'. Like many of the poets of World War I, Owen described the lives of the soldiers in the trenches and denounced the horror of the fighting. He was killed in action on 4 November , as his company tried to cross La Sambre Canal near the village of Ors, and laid to rest in the military section of the local cemetery.

The World War I monument in Lille shows four leaders of the city's Resistance lined up against a wall just moments before their execution by the German Army in the dungeons of the citadel. They were eventually betrayed and executed on 22 September In June the young Trulin gathered around him a band of teenage friends for the purpose of collecting information on the German occupier in Belgium and Northern France.

Arrested near Antwerp, Trulin was executed in the ditch around Lille Citadel a few months later on 8 November. Louise de Bettignies joined the British Intelligence Service in and was given the job of setting up a network of spies to collect information on German activities in Northern France. Today, a statue of the Queen of Spies continues to watch over the city of Lille. At the entrance to Lille Zoo stands a memorial 'to the 20, pigeons who died for their country' and 'to the pigeon fanciers who were executed by the enemy' for having kept them. Carrier pigeons played an important role during the Great War and one was even awarded the prestigious Ordre de la Nation for its services at Verdun.

Today, radio waves may have replaced wings when it comes to sending messages in times of war but pigeon fancying remains a popular sport in Northern France. On 11 January the 18 Ponts munitions depot in Lille suddenly exploded, killing people, wounding and destroying 21 factories and houses. Today, a monument to commemorate the catastrophe stands on rue de Maubeuge.

During the 'terrible years' of the Great War the people of Lille were forced to live in extreme conditions. The German occupiers confiscated anything of use, including mattresses, and 'deported' 10, young people, mostly women, to work on the farms of Aisne and Ardennes. In October the Western Front stabilized several kilometres from Ypres, creating a salient in the German line. Five battles of the Great War, involving troops from all over the world, centred on the rich Flemish city of Ypres.

Today the city's famous Cloth Hall, destroyed during the war and since rebuilt, is home to the In Flanders Fields Museum which tells the story of the First World War through the eyes of a soldier and a civilian of the period. During the Great War, hundreds of thousands of Allied Troops passed through the Menin Gate in the ramparts of Ypres on their way to the front.

Each evening at 8 o'clock since the Last Post has been played at the foot of the Ypres Memorial in tribute to the 55, soldiers of the British Empire who fell on the battlefields of the Ypres Salient. In April Kemmel Hill was the scene of savage fighting as the Germans tried to wrest Ypres from the control of the British, soon to be reinforced by the French.

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Today the ossuary on the flank of the hill contains the bodies of 5, French soldiers, most of whom were killed on Kemmel. At the summit stands a column dedicated to the French soldiers who fought in Flanders.


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It features the statue of the Roman goddess Victoria whose melancholic gaze has earned her the nickname 'The Sad Angel of Kemmel Hill'. Although a mere 5 kilometres long, the road which runs from Serre-Puiseux in the department of Pas-de-Calais to Mailly-Maillet in Somme is bordered by no fewer than twelve war cemeteries.

Today this historic landscape is home to the peaceful gardens of the Commonwealth and French War Cemeteries of the Serre Road. On 1 July , on the first day of the Battle of the Somme, the 46th North Midland Division and the 56th London Division attacked the salient without success, the Germans holding on until February A viewpoint indicator on the site shows the Hindenburg Line and how the fighting developed. Rebuilt after the war, an observation tower attached to the castle wall was used by the Germans to send light signals to Cambrai.

In early this small village to the south-east of Arras found itself at the forefront of a formidable line of German defences which stretched from the Belgian border to the town of Soissons. Despite its small size, barely inhabitants, the village is also home to six British military cemeteries. Next to the road which runs from Souchez to Aix-Noulette stand a couple of simple monuments to commemorate the lives of two young officers who were killed one month apart in the attack on Saules Trench.

Opposite the Canadian Memorial on Vimy Ridge stands a more modest monument to 'the officers and soldiers of the Moroccan Division' who fell there during the Second Battle of Artois. On 9 May , two years before the success of the Canadian Corps, the Moroccan Division fought their way up to Vimy Ridge; however for want of reinforcements, they were soon obliged to retreat.

In all, nearly , soldiers from the French colonies and protectorates fought on the battlefields of Europe during the Great War. Heir to the Motte-Bossut textile dynasty, in he was ordered by the Germans to manufacture cloth which would be turned into sandbags for their trenches. The memorial quotes his words of refusal to Governor Hoffman, 'We cannot accept the role of collaborator to the enemy.

You can commandeer our goods but you cannot commandeer our selves'. He was subsequently deported to Germany. The imposing war memorial on boulevard Leclerc shows the personification of Peace victorious, the terrible Hydra subjugated; a fitting tribute to the suffering of Roubaix during the four year occupation of the Great War. A carving on the memorial depicts civilian women herded by soldiers during the deportations which saw 8, 'volunteer' workers forced from the town. The statue of Peace carries the horn of plenty, a reference to the privations inflicted on the city.

Tourcoing War Memorial and its magnificent representation of Victory on horseback leading her soldiers 'to glory and immortality' pays tribute to the 2, men from Tourcoing who died in the fighting of The monument also bears the names of the civilians who died during the occupation. The city was liberated on 17 October , bringing to a close the mistreatment and privations that were on inflicted on the people of Tourcoing throughout the four years of the Great War. In February the German Army carried out a tactical retreat to the heavily fortified Hindenburg Line, ensuring before they left that the areas they had previously occupied were mined and booby-trapped.

On 25 March Bapaume Town Hall was destroyed by a time bomb one week after the arrival of Australian troops in the town. As with all the towns and villages in the 'zone rouge', Bapaume could not be rebuilt until extensive mine clearing and earth-moving works were done. A new Town Hall opened in When the Germans retreated from Cambrai in October all they left their Canadian successors was a ghost town with a burned-out centre.

The architect Pierre Leprince-Ringuet was given the job of rebuilding the town and he gave Cambrai new squares and streets, concentrated the administrative buildings and shops into specific areas, and designed a brand new town hall. Today the architecture in Cambrai's centre is a mixture of traditional regional styles and the more modern concept of Art Deco. It took more than two years after the end of the war to clear away the rubble before the reconstruction of the ruined town of Lens could begin. In architect Urbain Cassan drew up plans to build a new station in the shape of a steam locomotive, with a clock tower for its funnel and exaggerated arches for its wheels.

Inside the station Cassan added a mosaic on the themes of railways and coal-mining to reflect the building's purpose and the history of the town. The reconstruction of Steenwerck is exemplified by its spectacular war memorial and Romano-Byzantine church. Up to the spring of the village was defended by the British Army, mostly Australians and New Zealanders. In a New Zealand delegation visited his grave to remove the dishonour of his 'unfair' execution.

The 14th century bell tower in the main square was one of the town's few architectural features to have survived.

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In the aftermath of the battle the houses which bordered the square were rebuilt in a mixture of styles. The town hall, designed by Jacques Alleman, is the central piece of this architectural ensemble. By the end of the Great War, after suffering almost constant shelling from to , Arras was in ruins and a 'martyred city'. It was decided that its prominent features, such as the bell tower, the town hall and the facades of the houses bordering the main square, should be rebuilt as faithfully as possible to the originals.

Using a mixture of reinforced concrete and stone facing, architect Pierre Paquet managed to restore much of the rich architectural heritage of Arras. The village of Vieille-Chapelle, near Estaires, was completely destroyed in the Battle of the Lys in the spring of Completed in , the church clearly shows the Basque influence which established the reputations of the architects in Le Touquet and Saint-Jean-de-Luz Basque Country.

In the s a series of public buildings opened such as the school, the Town Hall and post office and the new church with its fifty-one metre high bell-tower which now dominates the Flemish plain.

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Reduced to rubble during the German Spring Offensive in , the town centre was redesigned after the Great War by the architect Louis-Marie Cordonnier. His regionalist ideas can be seen in many features of the town, notably the design of the bell tower which adheres faithfully to the style of the Flemish Renaissance. By late both sides had lost all hope of a rapid victory. The French and British Armies found themselves pitted against their German counterparts along a line which stretched nearly kilometres across France from the Belgian coast to the Swiss border.

A long war of position and attrition had begun. The Western Front ran like a scar across the countryside of Northern France between the historical provinces of Flanders and Picardy. After a number of minor operations in the Artois Hills, the French Army handed over to British troops in The following years saw an increase in military activity with major offensives at Arras in April and Cambrai six months later.

Today, the numerous military cemeteries which punctuate the region are testament to the fierceness of these battles, the provenance of the men who fought them, and the miserable conditions soldiers of both sides endured in the trenches. Discover a network of more than tourism professionals with special knowledge of the Remembrance Trails. And plan your stay, find accommodation, discover a restaurant Practical info Find out more Walking and cycling Nearby Events. Practical info Tourist offices, accommodation and restaurants nearby.

Fort de Seclin Pascal Mor. Statue du Digger - Parc m Pascal Mor. Statue du Digger - Parc m Samuel Dhote. Statue du Mar Anne-Sophie Flament. Fort de Leveau - Feignies. William Malcolm Chisholm Nord Tourisme.

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Emma Isabel Chisholm Nord Tourisme. Le Cateau Cambr Nord Tourisme. Monument aux morts de Caudry Samuel Dhote. Monument fun Pascal Mor. Lichfield Crater - Th Philippe Frutier. Lichfield Crater - Th Samuel Dhote. Vitraux de l' Samuel Dhote. SOUCHEZ - Monument a la gloire de la division barbot The remarkable bronze statue on the monument dedicated to 'glory of the Barbot Division' is the effigy of General Ernest Barbot whose bravery and humanity acquired him the reputation of 'a good knight' among the French ranks.

Ruines de l' Samuel Dhote. Statue du G Samuel Dhote. The kolam design is stretched vertically, the powder falls on the ground on which Shantala continues to dance, the horizontal design mirroring the vertical one. The ritual is accomplished. Shiva the terrible has gone away. The dancer once again becomes a fragile and exhausted little creature, crouching beneath the kolam picture, an immense sheet of crumpled wrapping paper.

But the viewer will remember the splendid impact of what he has just witnessed for a long time afterwards. A long-awaited meeting between two choreographs at Montpellier Danse: Bory completes his trilogy of portrait pieces. He decided to dedicate a piece to each of them by way of a portrait. With Fuster, it was a case of a reunion. And with Plexus , the solo portrait of Kaori Ito, we could see just how far their respective worlds, between dance and circus arts, could be merged through mutual understanding [ see our review ].

The meeting with Shivalingappa took place in Germany, on the occasion of the Three weeks with Pina festival. But what common ground could there be between Bory and Shivalingappa, who lives between Madras and Paris and is developing a contemporary form of kuchipudi dance? There remain books, mythology, flavours…. Shantala, Shiva and ash, symbol of the life cycle. Lord of cremation sites, he covers the bodies with ash. And Shivalingappa assumes very articulated and purified poses, supported by kuchipudi, but harking back to prehistoric art as much as contemporary art.

The dancer seems to be dominated by this super-powerful mass, and at the same time to control its movements and the shadows that invade it, as if directing them by means of an interactive device. Let the ritual begin…. If aSH… is a portrait, then Bory has drawn it in Chinese ink. There is only black and white here, and sometimes the reflection of a solar or lunar light on the enormous canvas that embodies either Shiva or his destructive energy.

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And Shantala, as a dance warrior, as a Shiva avid for ash, launches herself into a conquest of extreme refinement. She draws with water and white rice powder, starting with an enormous spiral, a mandala which she works with her feet like Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker does with the sand in Fase — Four Movements to the Music of Steve Reich. But can one reveal oneself as a person and artist by embodying a character which imposes itself like Shiva?