Military History Tours Villers-Bretonneux Centenary Tour 26 April 2018
Our last day visiting the Somme battlefields and a chance to discuss the battle where Australian troops turned the tide on the German Operation Michael on the night of 24/25 April.
First we visited the Australian National Memorial (ANM), this time without the crowds so that those whose ancestors have no grave and are commemorated on the wall were able to see their names and leave a poppy or a message. Stuart was able to commemorate the death of Walter Allen; Charles, Harold Humphries; Sheryn, Philip Gillman; and Craig, John Carr.
On 24 April 1918, 15 Brigade attacked through the site of the ANM to envelope the Germans at Villers Bretonneux from the north, Eunice’s father Stanley Pearson was wound in this assault, and Stuart’s Ancestor Walter Patten won the Military Medal.
We then visited the Victoria School to see the Museum and read the poignant message in the playground.
At Adelaide Cemetery we saw where the Unknown Soldier had been exhumed for the AWM Canberra, then on to the wood near Cachy where Cliff Saddlier won the VC and Charlie Stokes the DCM in the 13 Bde envelopment from the south commanded by Charles’ grandfather Thomas Glasgow. This was followed by a drive across the verdant plain where the two cavalrymen Wilhem Blitz and Frank Mitchel mounted on iron steeds, fought their duel.
The rest of the afternoon and evening was spent in Amiens where guests visited the cathedral, shopped and sampled the wares of local restaurants.
Tomorrow we head for Flanders.