Western Front Battlefield Tour - DAY 1

to Lille in France where your chauffeur/guide will pick you up for your 2 day Western Front battlefield tour. We spend the whole day in the Ypres Salient. Alternatively group travel can be made from London, either coach or V Class Mercedes. 

At this museum you will see preserved trenches and tunnels systems in the Sanctuary Wood.

This was named by the British during the first battle of Ypres in 1914, this wood is where men separated from their regiments and gathered to be reunited with their units.

Hill 62

Our next stop on your western front battlefield tour is a visit to nearby Hill 62, visiting the Canadian memorial. The Canadian forces faced a major attack here in June 1916. The Germans attacked hill 62 using gas, flamethrowers and mines. This attack was by far the fiercest the Canadian army had faced, here you can see the tree stumps left by the intense shelling from the Germans.

Hooge crater and museum

In the summer of 1915, the British positions around Hooge had become precarious. The Germans held the high ground having the advantage of a panaramic view over the British frontline. On 19 July 1915, the British Royal Engineers tunnelled to the German lines. Here they detonated 1700 kilograms of high explosives, resulting in a huge crater. They thought that the explosion would damage the German positions, immediately after the explosion the allies rushed to the crater in order to consolidate their advance. Unfortunately, the Germans took shelter from the explosion and machine gunned the advancing British troops. It was later referred to as ‘the Hooge Crater. The museum and cemetery are well preserved and well worth visiting.

We then travel the short distance to the Lijssenthoek Visitor centre and Military Cemetery. It was the biggest evacuation centre on the Salient in WW1. We also visit the Whispering Walls which tells the story and history on Lijssenthoek.


The local restaurants at Poperinge assisted the soldiers greatly during the WWI. The town became popular as a place of rest for soldiers who were given two or three days leave at Poperinge. This, however, harboured another side to warfare and town hall in the Grote Market contains the courtyard where soldiers condemned to death were shot by firing squad.
The ‘Shot At Dawn’ memorial is next to the execution post. Seventy executions took place within the grounds of the Stadhuis, this action caused the death of 50 British and 20 French soldiers. A short distance from the memorial are the two cells where the condemned were held.


Brandhoak Military cemetery

Noel Godfrey Chavasse, VC & Bar, MC was one of the most highly decorated British soldiers of the Great War. The only man to be awarded the Victoria Cross and Bar. There are only two other people who have ever been awarded 2 VC’s. He was wounded in action at the 3rd battle of Ypres. On the 4th August 1917 aged 32 years Chavasse died of wounds that he sustained at the 32nd Casualty Clearing Station at Brandhoek. He is buried in the cemetery at Brandhoak.

Yorkshire trench

The Yorkshire trench is one of the best preserved trench systems in the Salient.

Langemark German Military Cemetery

Langemark is about four miles North East of Ypres. Two significant Great War sites near the village are the Brooding Soldier and the German War Cemetery. At the German Cemetery 44000 German soldiers are buried some of which are in mass graves. The Brooding Solider Monument is the location of the first gas attack by the German army against Canadian Forces. The Brooding Soldier memorial at Saint-Julien commemorates the 2000 Canadian First Division, who were killed by the German gas attack of 22 April 1915.

Tyne Cot British Military cemetery

The cemetery at Tyne Cot is on a ridge that was captured by the British in October 1917. Several German blockhouses were used as medical dressing stations. There were also a number of small farm buildings which were captured by the Northumberland Fusiliers. It is said, that the assorted buildings and captured German bunkers gave the Northumberland Fusiliers a reminder of the Tyneside cottages. Tyne Cot Cemetery is the world’s biggest Commonwealth Military Cemetery holding over 11500 graves along with the names of 34,991 soldiers, who were killed but their bodies were never found.

End of the tour in Ypres.
Menin Gate: The Last Post is played at 20.00hrs.

Western Front Battlefield Tour - DAY 2

remains the worst day in military history for British military, with the loss of 60,000 men on the 1st July 1916. We travel the 25 mile wide battlefront to explore, examine and discuss the events that took place here over 100 years ago.

Serre Road Military Cemeteries

Serre was one of the strongly fortified villages held by the Germans at the start of the Battle of the Somme in 1916. We travel along the Serre Road where we will visit various cemeteries.
The Pals Battalions from Yorkshire and Lancashire who were involved in the attacks around this area endured decimating losses.

Sheffield Memorial Park

Sheffield Memorial Park is a wooded area where the original frontline trenches and the shell-holes in the ground have been preserved. At the front of the memorial park, the shallow outline of the original 1st of July 1916 frontline trench can still be seen. It was actually the Accrington Pals who attacked from the trenches here on the 1st, of July.

Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial

Next on the western front battlefield tour is the Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial Park. It is a memorial site dedicated to the commemoration of the Dominion of Newfoundland Forces members who were killed during World War I.
The Battle of the Somme was the regiment’s first major engagement and during an assault that lasted approximately 30 minutes the regiment was all but wiped out.
The losses sustained by the Newfoundland Regiment at Beaumont-Hamel on July 1, 1916 were staggering. The 800 Newfoundlanders who went into battle that morning only 68 were able to answer the roll call the next day. With more than 700 killed, wounded or missing. The dead included 14 sets of brothers including four lieutenants from one family.
Hawthron Ridge
The explosion of the mine under Hawthron Ridge was the first of the nine mines to be detonated across the Somme. This commenced the Somme offensive. It was recorded by Geoffrey Malins at 7.20am on the 1st July, 1916 and is one of the best known films of the Great War. The mine was blown up for a second time on the 13th November when the 51st Highland Division captured the ridge and village.

Hawthron Ridge

A vital part of the western front battlefield tour is a visit to the Thiepval Memorial.
This commemorates the missing of the Somme battlefields. The memorial bears the names of 72194 officers and men of the United Kingdom and South African forces. These soldiers died in the Somme battle before 20 March 1918 and have no known graves.

Over 90 percent of those commemorated on the Thiepval Memorial died in the 1916 Battles of the Somme between July and November, 1916.


The village of Pozieres is where another bitter fight to control the area took place. The 1st, 2nd and 4th Australian Divisions regained possession of the surrounding ridges and village. There were over 23000 casualties, the memorials here are a resonance to the name of Pozieres. An Australian historian quotes that Pozieres “is more densely sown with Australian sacrifice than any other place on earth”.

Lochnagar Crater

The next part of the Western Front battlefield tour is to visit the memorial at The Lochnagar Mine Crater which is the largest man-made crater of WW1.
The British 179th Tunnelling Company, Royal Engineers tunnelled beneath a German strongpoint called “Schwaben Höhe”. On the morning of 1st July, 1916 the mine was exploded, Twenty seven tons of high explosives were detonated resulting in a crater some 137 metres in diameter and 67 metres deep. This caused severe damage to the German trench system. Today the Lochnagar Crater has been preserved as a memorial to all the men and women of all nations who suffered in the Great War.

McCrae’s Football Battalion

The 16th Royal Scots battalion were also known as McCrae’s battalion, Edinburgh’s Finest and the Sporting Battalion. Here they are remembered at the Contalmaison Cairn. This monument commemorates the professional and amateur sports people from the Edinburgh area who volunteered to fight. This included hundreds of football club supporters who joined with the sportsmen.
Your chauffeur guide will return you to Lille to return to London on the Eurostar.

If you would like to discover more about the Western Front and what happened there, you can read more here at Wikipedia.

The Western Front
Per Person
2 Day Tour
Private Guided Tour
A 2 day Western Front battlefield tour is usually between £399 per person based on a minimum of 2 people of a tour. This price varies depending on the time of year and hotel availability.
This covers the cost of your own private chauffeur battlefield guide, tour vehicle, entrance fees, hotel room for 1 night sharing a twin room and pickup/drop off at Lille Eurostar train station- which is only 1 hour 20 mins from London.
A single occupancy fee may apply depending on hotel availability.
To reserve your dates a 20% deposit is required with the remainder of the tour price paid by 2 weeks before tour departure.
On booking an in-depth itinerary and maps will be sent to you for your tour of the The Western Front.
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