Archive for May, 2010
Along with Peter Barton, Tony Pollard & Iain Banks (GUARD) & Gary Andrews I again attended the Aubers Ridge 9 May commemorations at the Australian Memorial Park at Fromelles. The battle in May 1915 (ninety-five years to the day) was an unmitigated disaster for the British Army – losses were particularly heavy in the 8th Division. I went last year for the first service of commemoration and was delighted to see that the turnout was similar. It was organised by the wonderful Victoria Burbidge who does so much to ensure that British endeavours over that blood-soaked piece of land are remembered with the same vigour as are the actions of their Australian counterparts a year later.
The service was simple but dignified and I would commend it to anyone as a very good example of heartfelt remembrance. I was honoured to lay a wreath on behalf of the ‘Breathing Fire’ documentary crew. It was good to see a few friends there, especially Johan Vandewalle who had driven down from Polygon Wood. We had to miss the reception afterwards as had meetings lined up in Peronne but I congratulate all who worked so tirelessly to make this event such a success.
Some pictures of the day are attached.