The Somme remembrance 1st July

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LadyMuck

Striker
Just been getting the low down from my grandad about this, so I'll just pass on the tales I've heard...

They give the unfortunate impression that the Battle of the Somme lasted one day, 1st July, 1916, with sixty thousand casualties before breakfast. The Tyneside Scottish were almost eliminated. It ended on 18th November 1916 after thousands upon thousands upon thousands of the brightest and the best British & German young men died in the mincing machine. My great great uncle Alex, died on 19th August 1916. He was a stretcher bearer and the citation reads "They walked without arms where armed men dared not go." His brother Gordon vanished without trace, blown to smithereens, lost without trace. My great grandad David, returned in 1918 on one leg. When they were really desperate they even took my great great Granddad into a pioneer battalion. To complete the sad charade my grandads brother David helped hold the perimeter at Dunkirk to allow one hundred and thirty thousand French soldiers to escape their own country. Two hundred thousand British troops escaped. Then my grandads brother and his mates walked to Poland.
 
My Grandad was there in Royal Artillery. He also fought at the Third Battle of Ypres/Passchendaele so had a hell of time of it.

He was very old when he had my Dad (I'm only late 30's) so sadly I only met him as a baby. Dad said he never ever talked of the war but had a hidden temper, never to him or my Gran but sometimes at random moments like when he sparked out the local doctor because he wouldn't see my Gran straight away.

The things this generation took their graves will be like nothing we can imagine. I will take my two to Northern France and Flanders when they are old enough so they can also learn the duality of man.
 

Dubai Si

Midfield
Did the tour in 2010. Great experience in a respectful way. Unbelievable how many gravestones are marked "known only unto God" and those poor souls on the Theipval Monument have no grave are remains to bury at all. Also did Ieper which was another great experience.
I did similar in 2014. What an amazing and totally humbling experience.

Not aware of having any family out there but as I have grown older it was just something that I though I must do to pay my respects and say thank you. Lots of "dust in the eye" moments.

I put a little part of it down to being hungover today, but I have cried twice today reading and watching the tributes and ceremonies today.
 
I just had a Frenchman thank me for the allies contribution.

Its his retirement party in what is a sort of local for me.

Took me totally by surprise an do found it incredibly emotional.

Ran off to the bog
 
Ive said before that my brother uses to work for commonwealth war graves commission bases in Ieper for years so I've done passchendale.. Menin gate and countless small cemeteries but the Somme I really need to make an effort to visit
 
Apologies if SEB but this is a very unusual and moving tribute.
Yes, I was around Newcastle central metro station this morning photographing some the actors dressed as Northumberland Fusiliers who silently arrived at the station, waited on the platform and then took a Metro down to Sunderland. It was quite a moving experience, one of lads silently handed me a card with

"Private Hugh Lynch
24 (Tyneside Irish) Battalion
Northumberland Fusiliers

Died at the Somme on 1st July 1916"







 

Pancho

Striker
Staff member
I just had a Frenchman thank me for the allies contribution.

Its his retirement party in what is a sort of local for me.

Took me totally by surprise an do found it incredibly emotional.

Ran off to the bog
I'm with you just reading that.

Pancho - I have had a few lumps in the throat at times to-day but that link is just amazing and the picture above of the shrouds just staggering



Newcastle Station
Fantastic

Yes, I was around Newcastle central metro station this morning photographing some the actors dressed as Northumberland Fusiliers who silently arrived at the station, waited on the platform and then took a Metro down to Sunderland. It was quite a moving experience, one of lads silently handed me a card with

"Private Hugh Lynch
24 (Tyneside Irish) Battalion
Northumberland Fusiliers

Died at the Somme on 1st July 1916"







What a fantastic tribute.

I'm not ashamed to say that I'm now officially in bits.

It was the part where he handed you the card that did it.
 
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What a fantastic tribute.

I'm not ashamed to say that I'm now officially in bits.

It was the part where he handed you the card that did it.
Aye, the card hit me a bit too.

It was the lad in the second photo I uploaded looking at the camera he was walking towards me, and handed me the card just after I took the photo. Makes that photo just a bit more eerie with the young lad staring at the camera.
 
Some very moving stories on here, and We Are Here is an incredibly moving tribute too, raised the hairs on the back of my heck watching some of it.

Lots more pictures of it here.

My granddad fought in the first world war with the West Yorks, won some medals, and came back to a life of mostly long-term unemployment. One of my dad's earliest and most vivid memories was standing with his dad on Lendal Bridge while he threw his medals into the Ouse. "That's all their worth, son," he said. "Because when you come back, you're nothing." Unimaginable sacrifices they made, man after man after man, the ones who died, the ones who were maimed, and the ones who came back. Humbling.



(So good to see people using this thread for political point-scoring about the referendum. Classy and respectful.)
 
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