AUSTRALIANS IN FRANCE & BELGIUM IN THE GREAT WAR:
... 2018: THE FINAL CHAPTER OF THE 'WAR TO END ALL WARS'...
ARMISTICE (11/11/1918) CENTENARY 1 DAY BATTLEFIELD TOUR 2018 ex PARIS
** (Amended 10 October 2018 - Due changes with DVA arrangements for the day)**
Note! If you wish to to attend this 'once in a lifetime' day tour to the Armistice Day ceremony at Villers-Bretonneux with us you MUST register NOW at DVA to attend the ceremony. No registration - No entry!
Including: The Sir John Monash Interpretive Centre Villers-Bretonneux: Opened Anzac Day 2018
Australia and World War 1
When The Great War came to an end in 1918 Australia was left to come to terms with a war which, on the Western Front alone, had cost Australia 48,000 dead (* including Gallipoli - over 60,000 dead) and over 156,000 wounded. Militarily, the ANZAC reputation stood sky-high at the end of the war and along with the Canadians, they were regarded as among the most elite fighting troops in the British Expeditionary Force – tough, battle hardened and ruthless, they were greatly feared by the Germans and grudgingly admired even by their nemesis - the British High Command.
On this 'once in a lifetime' Armistice Day Centenary day tour from Paris we will hear how the Australian reputation was established as one of the finest fighting forces in WW1 on the Western Front. We shall hear tales of enormous courage, endurance and sacrifice that will both inspire and humble, culminating in participating in the very moving and forever remembered Armistice Day centenary ceremony at the Villers-Bretonneux Australian War Memorial.
At A Glance...
Your Guide: An experienced Spirit of Remembrance Battlefield Guide/Historian
Dates: Sunday 11 November 2018 (11/11)
Departs: Paris: Gare du Nord: 0630
Returns: Paris: Gare du Nord 2130-2200
(REF: AUA181DPAR) "Armistice 100" 1 Day Paris Tour
Cost: €418.00.00 Per Person
* NO Child rates apply: (Children under 6 years not allowed
Spirit of Remembrance: Mobile Phone 24 Hours contact: +44 (0) 7 983509091
** (Amended 10 October 2018 - Due changes with DVA arrangements for the day)**
0530 (5.30am) (Sunday 11 Nov 2018)
Your guide will meet you in McDonald's, opposite the Gare du Nord & walk you to the coach.
(Please be aware of your personal security and belongings whilst in Paris and arrive in plenty of time to meet up and prepare for your journey. It is important that you identify yourself to your guide, so he can mark your name off the passengers list.)
0600 (6am) Our coach MUST leave at 0600 in order that we are on time for the commemorations
Your Spirit of Remembrance tour bags and souvenir books will be awaiting you onboard the coach.
En-route we will pick up a packed breakfast. Our coach will now drive straight to the ANM (Australian National Memorial) at Villers Bretonneux. We will disembark and remain in a group to go through airport style security screening and DVA identity passes check* at the memorial itself. .
[* New arrangements per DVA communication 09 Oct 18]
0800 Australian National Memorial site opens
Your guide will identify the location on the promenade where you should assemble at the end of the commemorations. Upon arrival at the Memorial we strongly advise that you find a seat as there is only limited seating.
08.30 Pre-service presentations and information commence.
This includes music from the Australian Defence Force Band and the Voices if Birralee Choir.
10.00 Everyone to be seated
10.30 Official commemoration service commences
12.00 Estimated time for service to finish, (no official Order of Service yet available.
CLICK HERE for "Remembrance Day 2018 Villers-Bretonneux DVA Information"
1230-1300 Upon completion of the ceremony, please assemble at the location on the promenade area advised by your guide and board your coach when directed.
The Official ARMISTICE Day Service 2018- Australian National Memorial
Entrance to the site is via the promenade at the front of the memorial, and you will walk 300 metres uphill through the cemetery to the memorial site. The surface is grass and may be slippery if damp.
Temporary seating is installed at the site. Limited seating only is available so we suggest seats are taken shortly after arrival. Reserved seating is only available for official delegates and for visitors with limited mobility (please advise us if you have limited mobility as space is limited and must be requested in advance - we cannot guarantee seats). If seating is full, there will be standing room on the grassed areas to the side and rear of the seats.
Should you have relatives buried here please advise your guide so he can locate them or consult the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website at www.cwgc.org
What about the weather?
The weather in the Somme region in November is very cold. The Australian National Memorial site is exposed to the elements and is normally very cold in November. You should ensure you are appropriately equipped for cold, wet, and windy weather, and take appropriate clothing with you when you disembark from the coach. The ground surface of the National Memorial is grass, so warm socks and waterproof shoes should be worn. * Included in your Tour inclusions are a waterproof raincoat/poncho that also doubles as reflective heat blanket and a foldable travel blanket/pillow.
What should I take with me?
● You will receive in your tour inclusions a commemorative backpack as a small bag is quite useful
● Wet weather jacket
● Warm, layered, thermal clothing, jacket, hat or cap, gloves, scarf (*You also will receive a thermal (*Thinsulate) wool beanie from us as part of your tour).
● Comfortable, sturdy walking shoes
● Lighter clothing for later during the day
● Drinking water and snack (water will be available from your coach driver for a small fee)
As detailed, there will be an excellent commemorative souvenir pack for everyone travelling on the tour including your ANZAC armistice commemorative tour booklet.
What facilities are available during the Service?
● Temporary toilets, including disabled toilets, and hand washing facilities
● First Aid Services
● Rubbish bins
● Bottled Water
After the Ceremony
1230-1300 (Approximately) Board your coach and set off for Ailly-sur-Noye.
1330 We will arrive at the historic restaurant Moulin des Ecrevisses, where we will be greeted by our host Christophe Lebee. We will be joined by those on our extended tour. Time to relax and enjoy a delicious brunch
14.30 This afternoon will be tailored to the group and family visits wherever possible, to include Adelaide Cemetery and Le Hamel. We will return to Villers Bretonneux, so we can spend more time at the ANM. Continuing on to visit to the new Sir John Monash Centre (SJMC). We have allowed extra time here as there is so much to see.
You will need to download the SJMC Phone App. For your convenience your tour bag includes Spirit of Remembrance phone earpods with a standard socket. Should you have the latest iPhone, please bring an adapter.
Unfortunately, we will not be able to visit the Chateau Bertangles, however we will drive by/stop and your guide will talk with you about its significance.
1900 Upon arrival in Amiens we will have free time to wander around or perhaps grab a snack and a drink before boarding your coach for Paris.
2100 We return to Paris arriving after approximately 2 hours after departure from Amiens.
* Please note all timings are approximate and that the itinerary is subject to change at all times due to reasons beyond our control. Also, we cannot guarantee the return arrival time in Paris that evening/night so we recommend that you do not make travel plans for that evening.
Château de Bertangles During World War I, the château was the Australian Forces Headquarters commanded by Australia's most famous General - Sir John Monash.
On August 12, 1918, Monash was knighted as a Knight Commander of the Order of the Bath at the chateau by King George V, the first time a British monarch had honoured a commander in such a way in 200 years. On the evening of Anzac Day April 24th 2016, The Governor General of Australia Sir Peter Cosgrove visited Bertangles to pay tribute to this amazing man and his men. It was here that Monash planned his defence of Amiens, his 92 minute battle masterpiece at Le Hamel and the tough tenacious fight that finally took Le Quesnoy - earning the Aussie lads 3 VCs. *This is an amazing and historic new addition to all our new 2018 tours.
What needs to be pre-arranged?
Descendants of Soldiers
The Department of Veterans' Affairs has received requests from Australian media outlets for interviews with descendants of soldiers who served on the Western Front. You may be a descendant of an Australian service man or woman who served on the Western Front, there may be an opportunity for you to share your family's story.
If you would like to take part, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with a brief description of your story and those travelling in your party. In addition, we require your State of residence in Australia and your contact details for the period you are in Europe, preferably a mobile number. We will then approach some senior, responsible media reporters who will be keen to cover your story. A staff member will be at the Australian National Memorial in Villers-Bretonneux to coordinate media activities and to help you in those interviews, if you wish.
In our experience, the media will be keen to tell your story and this will be positive coverage, particularly given Australia's centenary commemorations throughout the year. Should you have any queries or concerns, please contact Dale Starr at email@example.com.
Laying a wreath at ANM & Registration Requirements
Members of the public who wish to lay a wreath or floral tribute (wreath/tribute) will have the opportunity to do so at the conclusion of the service. We would like to offer you an alternate option of laying a wreath or cross at Adelaide Cemetery. Depending upon the number of people laying wreaths at ANM the wait can be some time. Adelaide Cemetery is a very special and fitting location as on 02 November 1993, following a request by the government of Australia, an unknown Australian soldier killed in the First World War was exhumed from Plot III, Row M, Grave 13, and is now buried in the Australian War Memorial in Canberra – "our Unknown Soldier". (CWGC website)
Wreath laying at the ANM:
Those members of the public who wish to lay a wreath/tribute are required to register their details by emailing the following details to firstname.lastname@example.org — wreath-laying registrations from the public will need to be submitted by 16:00 AEDT (06:00 GMT+1) 9 November 2018: with:
* your attendance pass registration Application ID Number
* the name and title of the person(s) laying the wreath/tribute
* the name of the organisation/group or the person/relative being represented
• Services of an EXPERT *highly qualified Battlefield Guide & Historian (*Guild of Battlefield Guides) for the duration of tour with specific knowledge on Australian battles in France & Belgium in WW1
• The tour uses the same luxury coach throughout the tour with the services of two experienced
• *Small breakfast pack
• Extensive Lunch
• Attendance at Armistice Day Centenary ceremony Villers-Bretonneux
• Stop at the location of Château de Bertangles: Sir John Monash HQ
• Commemorative high quality Armistice Day Anzac Day gifts:
• High quality full colour souvenir book of the tour
• Combined Travel Blanket/Pillow
• Thinsulate® Beanie
• Baggage Tags
• Western Front Maps (Incl in book)
COSTS DO NOT INCLUDE
• Meals and snacks as not included as above
• Museum fees (if applicable) unless specified as above
• Items of a personal nature
Please Note: Hand Luggage only: We cannot take large suitcases on this day tour.
• NO child rate applies & infants cannot be taken on this tour. Minimum age 12 years