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Webmatters : The 100th Anniversary of the Second Battle of Ypres April 1915
Rough Map of Area

Ypres 1915

The Hundredth Anniversary

22nd April 2015

A number of ceremonies took place throughout the day commemorating the first major gas attack. It was impossible to attend all of them and with the presence of HM Filip King of the Belgians, traffic controls were in place which further reduced mobility.

The major Belgian-French Commemoration took place at Steenstraat in the afternoon. A parade takes place here every year in honour of those who died and the survivors who then held the line.

Following the commemorations at the Carabineers’ Plaque and Grenadiers’ monument the parade continued to the Cross of Reconciliation where it was joined by King Filip and other dignitaries. Sadly, we, the great unwashed were placed aside, behind sound equipment and the press. We got to hear but not see very much and taking photographs was nigh on pointless.

A short time later it was the turn of the Canadians to welcome the King, at their Brooding Soldier monument at Vancouver Corner. I was surprised to see so few Canadians amongst the onlookers. Perhaps because for Canadians the gas attack took place on the 24th April 1915.

 

Some photos from the ceremonies at Zuidschote

100th Anniversary of the Gas Attacks The Bataljon Carabiniers Prins Boudewijn – Grenadiers French and Belgian Veterans' Associations One hundred years ago, on this spot... Numerous people had come from both sides of the border You don't see officers carrying canes so much these days The regimental colours The Belgian lion The orders sound rather familiar - even in Flemish The Band of the Belgian Royal Navy lead the way Marching to the Grenadiers' monument The standard of the RBL (Scotland) Passendale Branch At the Grenadiers' monument Not enough room for everyone along this wee lane The badge incorporates the hunting horn and the grenade Laying the wreaths Next one up So, I have to hang around here with his baton Thank you very much Waiting for the next leg of the parade

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Some photos from the ceremony at Vancouver Corner

The 100th Anniversary of the Gas Attacks Burgemeester Alain Wyffels of Langemark-Poelkapelle The arrival of the King HM Filip, King of the Belgians Somebody looks pleased with himself The ceremony at Vancouver Corner Canadian soldiers in the alleyways There were more bikes than cars parked up Pipes and Drums of the Calgary Highlanders The Calgary Highlanders fought at Kitcheners Wood The King leaves for yet another anniversary engagement in Ieper Security was minimal, but the jackets were undone, all the same The Last Post buglers

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In September 1915 it would be the turn of the British to unleash their first gas attack.