Belgian WWI Battle Fields


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Europe » Belgium » West Flanders » Ypres
September 21st 2015
Published: September 19th 2015
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Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 009Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 009Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 009

Impossible to convey he size of this cemetery in one screen shot
Belgian Battle Fields

Passchendele and Polygon Wood

Scene of overwhelming loss of life in the First World War – 1914 to 18.

There were 3 major battles in this area. By the time the 3rd battle too place in 1917 German forces had cemented themselves into a strong defensive position.

It was in this 3rd attempt to oust the German forces that the 5th Division of the Australian Army won high accolades for successfully clearing the Polygon Wood area of German forces. A tall memorial to the 5th Australian Division now stands in the Polygon Wood cemetery



There are numerous memorials and cemeteries in this part of the world. In the Ypres area ( of which Passhendele/ Polygon Wood is just a part ) has over 150 military WW1 cemeteries. The largest of these is Tyne Cot where there are 11,956 service personnel buried

British 8,961

Australian 1,368

Canadian 997

New Zealand 520

South African 90

Other 20

Plus a list of 34,837 who have no known grave but were killed in this area .

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We have now visited 3 main regions affected by the 1914-18 war.



But there were other regions in France further east where loss of life was needless and where men died gallantly.

Our focus has been on some Australian involvement which was on what is referred to as the Western Front and in particular The Somme, Fromells and Passchendaele.

Overall in that war about 750,000 allied personnel died and of those over 300,000 have no known grave.

As we drive through the region we notice cemeteries scattered between the towns and villages. The number of cemeteries is staggering. In the areas we touched on there are over 70 cemeteries in the Somme, over 240 in Flanders (including 150+ around Passchendaele) plus dozens more in the Pas-De-Calais area which includes Arras and Fromells. Not all are big like Tyne Cot, but most have at least a hundred. Most of the cemeteries are in farming land and the land up to the cemetery fence is productively worked.

Every cemetery we visited is faithfully maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission ( CWGC). All over the world this organisation maintains the last resting place of military personnel and keeps those areas in a garden like atmosphere bestowing solemn dignity toward the men and women whose remains they care for.

One comment I read in one of the region’s guides about the cemeteries is critical of the German cemeteries. That comment said that the German cemeteries are austere and do not show the same level of dignity and respect that the CWGC shows for the loss of life for the person buried.


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Aust 5th Div Cem & Mem Passchendaele Belgium (4)Aust 5th Div Cem & Mem Passchendaele Belgium (4)
Aust 5th Div Cem & Mem Passchendaele Belgium (4)

Memorial looking from the cemetery
Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 011Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 011
Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 011

The scene keeps on going
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Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 012

The scene keeps on going
Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 008Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 008
Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 008

The scene keeps on going
Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 007Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 007
Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 007

The scene keeps on going
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Passchendaele Belgium Tyne Cot 010

The scene keeps on going


25th September 2015

Last few Blogs
Just caught up on your last few blogs, amazing pics again and very interesting comments, The countryside looks really amazing. We have been extremely busy as S & V are renovating and completely gutted the top section of house , so they have No kitchen, so in between looking after Chloe who is on school holidays I have been supplying J & S with drinks , Lunch and dinner but Virg helps with dinner.Its going to be a full on weekend as S has till next Thurs to get new floor down and new walls painted as well as new windows installed before Kitchen arrives. We have both been shattered every night. Sounds like your having a wonderful trip, Talk Soon J & J xx

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