Fricourt “New Military Cemetery”

By: snowgood

Apr 02 2017

Tags: , ,

Category: Architecture, Death, War

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Focal Length:80mm
Shutter:1/0 sec

I’m running out of sequence here, but on Thursday 30th March my day started with a  quest.

The hosts at Studio 16 Aveluy let me borrow a bike, on which I toddled off to nearby Albert.

I enjoyed an inexpensive jambon baguette, and a latte coffee (courtesy of a Nespresso machine) for less than 5 euros.

Next up I pedalled back the way I’d come and went in the excellent Musée Somme 1916 which was an excellent place to get my bearings for my short stay.

On the way out I picked up a “Grande Guerre” Bataille de la Somme 1916 map for 8 euros, and had a good chat with a Dutchman in the gift shop.

He gave me some tips about where to go, and kindly sketched in background information whilst pointing out each spot on my map.

One place he suggested was Fricourt, which was where the legendary “Red Baron” was laid to rest, after having shot down 83 Allied aircraft.

The photo above shows the larger of two CWGC cemeteries which is off the beaten track on the outskirts of this petite village.

Later I stopped at the German cemetery on the Rue d’Arras.  It was good to see their soldiers haven’t been forgotten.They would have believed they were “doing the right thing”.

Presumably only those “at the top” understood the mission was not to protect “Allemagne” but instead a plan to extend her borders.

Sadly the Germans, and the French cemeteries are utilitarian at best, without the passionate attention to detail afforded to “our” servicemen.

Our lads get real gravestones, the French seem to get a flesh coloured plastic cross, and each German Cross pays tribute to four men!

So why am I not showing you Manfred von Richthofen’s grave? It seems that he was indeed laid to rest amongst his comrades, but his remains were dug up and carted back to Berlin.

Thanks to the wonders of the internet you can watch a film of his funeral on Wikipedia.  Scroll down to the bottom of the page to watch the historic event.




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