Day 1 (Outward): Local pick-up & travel to Dover.
Ferry to Calais. Onward travel to your accommodation in Arras (B&B for two nights). Check-in & evening free. (Note:A version of this itinerary with an abbreviated tour of the Somme is also available for groups wishing to travel via P&O North Sea Ferries sailing overnight from Hull. Please ask our staff for details).
Day 2 (The Somme, 1916): The Somme divides opinion to this day. For many, the British troops were "lions led by donkeys" whereas, across No Man's Land, the battle was regarded as "the muddy grave of the German army." Visits include:
Accrington Pals' Trench: Discover the fate of the northern Pals' battalions on 1st July.
Ulster Tower: Site of the Schwaben Redoubt; attacked by the 36th Ulster Division.
Lunch-time in Albert (or include a packed lunch provided by your accommodation).
Thiepval Memorial to the Missing: Records the names of more than 72,000 men.
Mash Valley: The 2nd Middlesex perished here as they advanced across No Man's Land.
Lochnagar Crater: Scene of the disastrous attack by the Tyneside brigades on 1st July.
Pozieres Ridge & Mouquet Farm: The German second line; captured by the Australians.
Depart from the Somme & return to accommodation in Arras. Evening free.
Day 3 (Vimy Ridge, 1917): Air power, artillery, mining operations & meticulous planning paved the way for the Canadian Corps' spectacular success in capturing a position the Germans believed to be impregnable.
Notre Dame de Lorette: High ground; fiercely contested by the French & Germans.
Vimy Ridge Canadian Memorial: Built on the site of the German strong-point on Hill 145.
Reconstructed Trenches: The trenches of both sides, now separated by mine craters.
Interpretive Centre: An audio-visual display explains the battle & Canada’s role in WWI.