Trail of Honour

The Forgotten Front Remembrance Trail, Pas de Calais

 

About the Trail

For one of the great untold stories of the First World War, follow the Forgotten Front Remembrance Trail in Pas de Calais. This often overlooked sector of the former Western Front lies north of the Somme Battlefields and south of the Ypres Salient, and was the scene of some of the heaviest fighting of the early years of the War.

The trail tells the stories of men like Albert Whippy, one of eight children born to Arthur and Alice Whippy in the East End of London.

In January 1915 Albert joined a draft of reinforcements to the Northamptonshire Regiment who were holding the line near Neuve Chapelle. On 9 May, his battalion attacked just south of Rue du Bois and was cut to pieces by enemy fire. Over 540 officers and men were killed, wounded or taken prisoner. Albert's body was never found and he is now commemorated on the Le Touret Memorial.

Private Whippy is just one of many thousands of Commonwealth servicemen buried or commemorated in this region in some of the most striking cemeteries and memorials maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

Along the trail, personal stories of some of the men who fought and died here can be accessed using your mobile phone to create a moving picture of life and death on the Western Front.

 

How to use the Trail

The trail is yours to explore, but we recommend starting at Gorre British and Indian Cemetery and finishing at Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery. Click here to download the leaflet and work out the clearest route on the map.

 

The Sites

Gorre British and Indian Cemetery Gorre
In the Spring of 1918 the men of the West Lancashire Division held the line here during the last major German offensive of the war.

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Post Office Rifles Cemetery, Festubert Post Office
Named after a volunteer unit largely composed of Post Office employees. In two weeks of fighting in 1915, they suffered some 600 casualties out of an original strength of 900.

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Le Touret Memorial and Military Cemetery Le Touret
More than 14,000 men are buried or commemorated here - most of whom died during the first 12 months of the war.

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St. Vaast Post Military Cemetery, Richebourg-L'avoueSt Vaast
Close to this cemetery, in June of 1916, men of the South Downs Pals attacked the "Boar's Head" Salient and in just over five hours of fighting, suffered 1,000 casualties.

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Neuve-Chapelle Memorial Neuve
Commemorating almost 5,000 Indian soldiers who lost their lives on the Western Front during the First World War this memorial marks the vital contribution and sacrifice of Indian servicemen.

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Laventie Military Cemetery, La Gorgue Laventie
The men of the 61st (2nd South Midland) Division began burying their fallen comrades here at the end of June 1916.

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Rue-Petillon Military Cemetery, Fleurbaix Rue Pet
Originally the site of 12 Battalion burial grounds this large cemetery contains the graves of men from almost every nation that served with the Commonwealth forces during the First World War.

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Le Trou Aid Post Cemetery, Fleurbaix Le Trou
One of the most aesthetically striking cemeteries on the Western Front, Le Trou contains more than 350 burials of men killed in fighting from 1914 to 1916.

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V.C. Corner Australian Cemetery and Memorial, Fromelles Vc Corner
This site commemorates over 1,600 Australian soldiers who were killed during the Battle of Fromelles.

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Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery Fromelles
The first CWGC cemetery to be built in more than 50 years, this is the final resting place of 250 soldiers whose remains were recovered from six mass graves in 2009.

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Discover More

Why not download a free QR code reader to your phone before tackling the trail? This will allow you to scan the QR code on the information panel about the cemetery and those commemorated there.