Tuesday 7 May 2019
Anyone who read last year’s posts will know how much I like Belgium. A lot! Two days in the country have reaffirmed my affection for the place and the people. The reason the country plays it low key is they’ve got it so sweet, but I’ve twigged that. I hereby restate my appeal that if Brexit goes all Pete Tong I’ll ask Belgium to grant me asylum on the grounds of being a persecuted minority.
I moofed around Ypres this morning. It’s a pleasant place with impressive 17th century walls and moat. The Menin Gate was quiet. There are a number of cemeteries.
The 13th century Cloth Hall and cathedral were rebuilt after the war having been totally destroyed, as was much of the town.
In the afternoon I explored the area around Passchendaele. There is a strong presence of New Zealand, Australian and Canadian memorials as they had a significant role in eventually securing the area.
The impressive Australian cemetery at Polygon Wood.
New Zealand memorial in the gardens around the Passchendaele museum.
Maoris were involved as engineers.
The gardens have small installations for all the countries involved, including Germany.
I’ll pop into the Last Post ceremony tonight.