History coming alive – France day 4

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France 2016 – At the Vimy Ridge memorial

Well it’s our last full day and perhaps one of the most poignant with our visit to Arras to see the Wellington tunnels and then on to Vimy Ridge.  In the tunnels, which were all carved out of the surrounding limestone, we were able to experience what it was like for the WWI allies whilst they were living down there. It was remarkable to think that at one point thousands of men were stationed there waiting to attack the Germans buy extending the tunnels under the front line.

We then drove over to Vimy ridge which is a memorial dedicated to the Canadian troops of WWI. Here we were able to walk through both the English and German trenches. We were all amazed at just how uneven the ground was as it has been untouched since the war and it now just covered with grass and trees. The size of some of the bomb craters was just amazing. Our guides form Kingswood had a fantastic knowledge if the history of the war and the location and the children bombarded them with questions about it. We finished our tour here by walking up to the giant memorial constructed int he 1930’s to commemorate the Canadians lost during this war.

Even though it was such an interesting day, we were all happy to come back to the chateau and unwind for a while. We then prepared for our last evenings entertainment – the disco! For dinner the children were treated to l’escargot and cuisses de grenuilles. That’s snails and frogs legs to us English, but call them what you like only a few brave children were happy to have a taste – most preferring to stick to the much safer chips (me included)!

After dinner we all went to the disco to strut our funky stuff before heading back to our rooms to prepare to leave tomorrow. It has been a really fantastic trip and we have to thank the staff at the Chateau, especially Amy and Reece as well as our driver Jimmy for making the stay so enjoyable.

 

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The red arrow in the background was painted on during WWII by the French who were sheltering form the bombings of Arras above.

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A map of the Western Front during WWI

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This memorial was built in honour of the 11,000 Canadians who lost their lives and were never found following WWI.

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Here we were learning all about how WWI started and which countries were allied together.

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Down in the British trenches at Vimy Ridge.

 

 

 

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In the German trenches at Vimy Ridge.

 

 

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Mmmmm – snails, who knew they were so tasty!

 

 

 

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Are you sure these are frogs legs -they really taste like chicken

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Hurry up and take the photo Mrs Thompson so I dont actually have to eat this!

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