The Vimy Memorial

In this episode, we travel to Vimy Ridge in Northern France, taken by Canadian soldiers in April 1917. We walk from a series of preserved trenches and mine craters to the crest of the Ridge and look at the impressive Vimy Memorial unveiled in 1936. Has a memorial come to symbolise Canada’s connection to the Great War?

Podcast Extras

The Vimy Memorial Today

12 Comments on “The Vimy Memorial

  1. As a Canadian, I truly appreciate your focus on our Memorial! Greatest of all views! So much preserved! An important stop for any visitor to the WW1 battlefields. Trenches are fantastic. Highly recommended. 🇨🇦❤️🇫🇷🇬🇧

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  2. thanks Paul for a wonderfully informative and moving profile of not only the Canadian memorial but also the earlier occupation of Vimy by British forces the previous year. In less than an hour, you immensely added to Tim Cook’s & Pierre Burton’s work. Very much looking forward to a future follow-up Vimy episode. A very poignant contrast between Pvt Holland’s execution by firing squad for dereliction of duty and Lt Basil-Jones’s VC for exemplary courage within days of each other over the same ground in 1916. best regards

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  3. Im Steve Oliver from Hamilton Canada and a supporter of the Hamilton Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders that perpetuated the 19th Btn of the CEF 2 nd Cdn Division. Thank you for this excellent Podcast. I as you need more time at the Vimy Memorial and battleground. I visited it just once so far, at the 100th Anniversary April 9, 2017. It was crowded with 25,000 people down below the memorial. I did not get up close apart from the north wall and not close enough to the statues but at least I had 4 hours looking at it. You would have been awestruck as the sun in the clear blue skies passed precisely behind it, then appeared between the two columns and then disappeared again. It was almost like a solar eclipse with the shooting rays shinning left and right from the columns.

    I must come back and visit the trenches and relieve the battles of not just April 9, 1917 but the other ones by the French and British you described. Its incredible that you say the French lost 250,000 soldiers in the area. Of course England lost its share as well.

    Im prepared to spend a proper amount of time, say a few days at Vimy, then Ypres, Paschendale, Somme, Thievpal, Beaumont Hamel where we lost the Newfoundland brave soldiers in that massacre.

    How would I be able to do this with my wife post COVID. I do not know how to set up such a tour on my own by car, and bus tours only stop for 2 hours if lucky.

    Did you do a video of the walk you describe on the Podcast or have any other materials to view? You mention the website with a photo of the pilgrimage in 1936.

    Thanks again,

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    • Hi I’d suggest getting one of the Battleground Europe books on the area as they do car tours for you to follow and also recommend hotels but I suspect some of that info may be out of date…….

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  4. Once again you truly capture the spirit of the sacrifice of the men who served in WW1. Greatly moved by the story of the soldier who was shot by his own side as was the VC that was given to another postumastly. Thanks as ever for sharing you knowledge.

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  5. Another fascinating podcast, Paul. It is hard to believe that a few short years after the completion of Vimy and the subsequent Pilgrimage, that the Germans were there again in a different period of conflict. It came a shock to discover that Hitler paid it a visit. I have always wanted to know more about how the WW1 Memorials were viewed by the Germans in the countries of Europe they occupied during WW2. There were a number of them that were supposed to have been deliberately destroyed or dismantled, according to what I have read, but I am unsure as to the truth of this.
    How did the troops of the 3rd Reich view, for example, the Menin Gate?
    Would make a very interesting section of a future podcast,,?!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I had the privilege of visiting Vimy and the magnificent memorial in 2007.
    A truly moving visit and your podcast touches so much.

    Many thanks

    Liked by 1 person

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