Dusk at the Ploegsteert Memorial

At the end of a long day, not so long ago, Baldrick and I found ourselves back at Hyde Park Corner.

In all my visits I have never seen the Memorial look as stunning as it did that evening, nor have I felt quite so moved, walking silently past the thousands of names inscribed on the walls within.  It’s a special place.

The Ploegsteert Memorial to the Missing stands in Berks Cemetery Extension on the western edge of Ploegsteert Wood, some seven or so miles south of Ieper (Ypres).  The names of more than 11,300 men from the U.K. and South Africa (Canadian, Australian & New Zealand casualties are commemorated elsewhere), all of whom died in this sector south of the Salient, are inscribed on the inner walls.

Shadows and light.

One face, 11,000 faces…

PRIVATE J. L. CLARKKING'S OWN YORKSHIRE LIGHT INFANTRY2713/04/1918Panel 8

Should you visit, don’t forget to sign the Register.

         

Cross of Sacrifice, Rosenberg Chateau Plots, Berks Cemetery Extension.

The Berks Cemetery Extension Cemetery Plan , by kind permission of the CWGC, shows you the position of the Memorial within the cemetery.

Taken from the steps of the Memorial, this view looks across the road at what was the original cemetery situated here, Hyde Park Corner (Royal Berks) Cemetery.  The darkness behind is Ploegsteert Wood.

I have absolutely no idea what Balders is doing, but I feel it may be time to head for home shortly.  I wonder if it’s a full moon tonight..?

View looking north towards Mesen (Messines), a couple of miles up the road…

…and south, towards Ploegsteert Village.

Just before we leave, a few moments at the grave of Private McBride, across the road in Hyde Park Corner (Royal Berks) Cemetery.

Home and a cup of tea, methinks.  If you want to see more of the Memorial, and of Private McBride, you can click this ever so ‘andy link:  Ploegsteert Memorial Photographs.

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