Ypres (Ieper) – The Cloth Hall: In Flanders’ Fields Museum

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Late afternoon in a wintry Ieper, and, as we have a little time to spare, let’s pay a quick visit to the In Flanders’ Fields Museum, which you can find in the Cloth Hall (on the left above, of course), where there’s a display of Great War headstones and memorials that you might find of interest.

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It’s only a small section of the museum, but well worth a look.

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Two headstones for unknown soldiers, the Belgian one on the left inscribed in both Flemish and French.

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The memorial tablet on the left commemorates twenty two unknown German soldiers; in contrast Werner Wittich, on the right, was given an individual headstone, probably by his colleagues.  Note the ornate wrought iron French headstone behind the tablet.

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French Muslim headstone (left), and models, which you might recognise if you visited Diksmuide with us a while back, of the old and new Yser Tower on the right.

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Digger.

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Old Menin Gate panel.

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And some rather fine sculptures and memorials (above & following).

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If you’re in Ieper, go and have a look for yourself.

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17 Responses to Ypres (Ieper) – The Cloth Hall: In Flanders’ Fields Museum

  1. Roley Rayfield says:

    My wife and I have visited Ieper twice, one time for the ANZAC Day commemoration held in the Toronto Avenue Cemetery where my Grandfather John Luff is buried. The museum in Cloth Hall is a credit to those who created it, as is the reconstruction of the town after WW1. Ieper is a beautiful town, well worth the visit. We attended the Menin Gate ceremony every night we were there. It was a very emotional experience.

    • Magicfingers says:

      Hello Roley. Thanks for taking the trouble to comment. I too love to visit Ieper whenever I get the chance – hopefully early next year – but it’s been a long while now since I attended the ceremony. I do hope you have found the post on Toronto Avenue Cemetery elsewhere on my site (there is a complete tour of Ploegsteert Wood if you are interested), and also the web’s biggest tour around the Menin Gate – use the search box, or, for the Menin Gate, try the Ypres link in the Categories section at the top right of the screen; there are 15 posts of the cemeteries and memorials in or adjacent to the city. You might enjoy them.

  2. Steven Hearnden says:

    Ypres is a must see if visiting Flanders. Seriously good WW1 bookshop on left hand side of the street approaching the Menin gate.

    • Magicfingers says:

      I know it well! Unfortunately most of the books I have bought there were lost in the Great Flood of Christmas 2013. Including a wonderful book on the Menin Gate itself.

  3. Steven Hearnden says:

    Sorry to hear that MF. As a further bit of trivia, my home town Sittingbourne, Kent is officially ‘twinned’ with Ypres, Belgium and one of the main pubs is called the Ypres Tavern. 🙂

    • Magicfingers says:

      Firstly Steven, I wholeheartedly approve of the MF (I am well known as MF in my other guise across the interweb – that of Frank Zappa afficianado). Secondly, I wonder whether I ever visited the Ypres Tavern during my days at Kent University a long time ago? We certainly found ourselves in Sittingbourne on more than one occasion. And thirdly, if you want to see more of the flood I mentioned, put ‘Houston’ in the search box. Really!

  4. Epsomgirl says:

    My 12 year old grandson is tonight in Ypres on a school trip and the children have laid a wreath at the Menin Gate. Very proud Nanny!!

    • Magicfingers says:

      I can imagine! Very proud indeed. You tell him that I am very jealous when he gets home! By the way, I took 300 photos in Epsom Cemetery only last week; the chosen ones will appear on this site one of these fine days.

  5. Steven Hearnden says:

    @Epsomgirl, so glad to hear that the ‘very’ younger generation still remember. Well done.

    • Epsomgirl says:

      I don’t know if they all do it, but a lot of the secondary schools take children on visits to Ypres, it’s part of the curriculum I think. My cousin’s grandson lives in Devon and he went last year.

      • Magicfingers says:

        I don’t know if they all do either, but many do, thank heavens.

        • Magicfingers says:

          By the way, the Epsom photos will eventually get published, but I cannot guarantee when; next year sometime I would think. The best way not to miss them, without continually checking back here, is by clicking the ‘Notify me of new posts by email’ box at the bottom of the page.

  6. John Hill says:

    My wife and I had the good fortune to visit Ypres in 2015.
    The Flanders Fields Museum is an outstanding display of WW1 artifacts and history.
    This museum is accommodated within what was the Cloth Hall construction of which commenced in the 13th century. A little ‘googling’ will show pre and post WW1 images and the the total destruction of this magnificent old building. Its restoration is a great credit to Belgium and the people of Ypres.
    Given Australia’s contribution I was pleased to see the small bronze statue of an Australian Digger. Regrettably, in spite of the attached plaque stating to the contrary, this web-site labels it as a Tommy.
    Given our British origins, and close association with “The Mother Country” at that time, to be considered a part of the British army was an accepted reality. To be labeled a Tommy instead of Digger would, without any disrespect, not have been so readily accepted.

    • Magicfingers says:

      Regrettably indeed. But then occasionally things slip through. Thank you for pointing out the error John. It has now been corrected.

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