Travels on the Somme Part Twenty – Albert: The Somme 1916 Museum

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I’m not a great one for museums – every hour spent in one is an hour I could be out in the field – but if you’re in Albert, the Somme 1916 Museum is well worth some of your time.  And no, this isn’t it.

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The Basilica (if you found yourself at this post via the link from the Lochnagar Crater page, then keep reading).

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Just past these two artillery pieces that we saw once before…

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…steps lead down into what was once the crypt,…

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…and is now…

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…the Somme 1916 Museum.  Everything here, they say, was collected from the surrounding trenches and battlefields, and here’s a selection of photos to give you a flavour of the place.

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Shattered British helmet.

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Home-made trench club.

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Flare guns.

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German stick grenade (Stielhandgranate).

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And here’s something similar I picked up recently, actually at Thiepval.  Imagine the force required to do the damage you can see in both photos.

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Molotov cocktail, although Molotov himself was in his revolutionary mid-twenties in Russia – in 1916 he spent some time in exile in Siberia before escaping –  and had yet to have a bomb named after him.

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Billie Nevill counts down the seconds before blowing his whistle.

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Vickers, Maxim & Hotchkiss.

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French Char tank.

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Reminds me of a different Baldrick; “Rat au Van for supper, Sir.  Yes Sir, I’ll tell you.  It’s a rat that’s been run over by a van!”.

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I’d be very happy if this lot was in my garden shed!  Note the gas apparatus leaning against the wall on the left.

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German identity tags.

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And then I spotted this.  We’ve encountered George Nugent before.

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We started with a photo of two guns – if you were interested enough to check out the link, you’ll know a bit more about them – and we finish with another, just outside the exit to the museum.  I haven’t a clue what the calibre of this beast is.

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And we can’t leave Albert without a parting wave at the Golden Virgin, now can we?

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4 Responses to Travels on the Somme Part Twenty – Albert: The Somme 1916 Museum

  1. Steven Hearnden says:

    My father-in-law and I visited here last October on a ‘pilgrimage’ to the Somme. Albert is a good general base for tourists and this museum is worth a visit.

  2. Magicfingers says:

    Yes, I agree about the museum, and Albert is indeed a good base, although personally I preferred staying in Amiens or Arras – further away, of course, but only twenty minutes drive from the Somme battlefields, and plenty of interest to see in both cities (watch this space), as well as on the journey to and from the Somme. There’s not an awful lot to do in Albert. Although on my last visit a couple of weeks ago I did (finally) remember to photograph the Machine Gun plaque on the wall of the town hall. I shall be adding the photos to the ‘Albert’ post on this site soon.

    • Steven Hearnden says:

      Excellent it is too! Yes, the famous mural on the side of the house is interesting.
      Found Beaumont Hamel extremely interesting.
      Keep up the good work!

      • Magicfingers says:

        Most kind Steven. I shall do my best!! I have been to Beaumont Hamel (only) twice – again most recently a couple of weeks ago – which allowed me to fill in a few photography gaps. Most notably Y Ravine, which you might have noticed doesn’t get covered (photographically) properly in the current post. Also some high shots from the Caribou, and the memorial panel I forgot to shoot last year! Don’t treat this site just as a blog. Old posts get updated with new information as and when. There are a number of Somme posts that are being updated at the moment, and I shall probably post a message on the home page when they are all done.

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