Battlefield Tours

I offer personalised battlefield tours to individuals or small groups. I can show you around Ypres or the infamous battlefields of the Somme or, having spent over two years researching for my last book with Peter Barton, why not take in the rarely visited but fascinating Arras battlefield?

Arras – The Spring 1917 Offensive in Panoramas including Vimy Ridge and Bullecourt

Arras – The Spring 1917 Offensive in Panoramas including Vimy Ridge and Bullecourt. Published in June 2010.

I have always found the best way to understand a battlefield is to read up on the battle and then to walk the ground, literally following in the footsteps of the soldiers. In much of France and Flanders the landscape can be remarkably unchanged and with appropriate extracts from letters, diaries and memoirs of the men who fought there it can be easy to transport people back to the cataclysmic events of over ninety years ago. The countryside ranges from the flat Flanders plain with its ‘hills’, each taking on major importance as strategic high ground through to the beautiful rolling chalk downland of the Somme battlefields astride the River Ancre. A good walk can be cathartic as well as highly informative and moving.

“I would like to say how much we enjoyed our trip to Ypres. We had a great time and were really impressed with your knowledge and stamina!  It was so relaxed that it felt like we were being guided by an old friend.” Robin Smallwood

Bailleul Road West Cemetery - a quiet stop on the Arras battlefields

The impressive Red Dragon of the 38th Welsh Division Memorial overlooking Mametz Wood

If you had family members who served in the war then I can put together a personalised trip. I will conduct archival research which will literally enable you to walk in their footsteps, whether during a large attack as part of a set-piece battle or the everyday routine of ‘holding the line’. See this Blog entry for a recent example.

“My late sister, Rose Coombs MBE, would have been delighted to know that the Great War is being remembered so efficiently and knowledgably by Jeremy. Your gift is in putting your research in such a moving way that it comes alive, never to be forgotten.  I think the maps and presentations are perfection itself.” Grace Acott

Jeremy at the site of the Quarry at Guillemont shows a first time visitor to the Somme where her grandfather died in an attack on 18 August 1916

“I couldn’t have chosen a better guide than Jeremy. We spent five days on a one-to-one visit to the battlefields of the Somme and Ypres, following the Swansea Pals Battalion. He is great company. It is difficult, in a few lines, to adequately describe how good this bloke is – suffice it to say that he has a palpable love and respect for the places, for the events, for the fallen, and for the truth.” Vanessa Gebbie www.vanessagebbie.com