Over the last few years I’ve taken up cycling and each year I like to give myself a long distance trip and with it being the centenary of the outbreak of WW1 last year, then it seemed the obvious thing to do. So we actually cycled from Nieuport in Belgium to Fetterhaus on the Swiss border, a total of about seven hundred miles the way we went.  On the route I wanted to stop off and pay respects to my grandmother’s first husband, James Henry Gittins, who was killed in action by machine gun on 9 May 1915.

We did that and  we also visited the battlefields where he had fought and died. All the photographs above have been taken on visits to the area during the last few years:

  • Menin Gate
  • Menin Gate
  • Memorial commemorating the Christmas Day truce 1914 when the opposing troops played a football match
  • Headstone of my grandmother’s first husband, James Henry Gittins
  • Poppy field
  • Canadian memorial
  • Remains from trench warfare
  • ‘In Flanders Field’ – poem by John McCrae
  • Memorial
  • Welsh memorial
  • Interior of building
  • Arras memorial
  • Certificate of commendation for James Henry Gittins, my grandmother’s first husband
  • His name written on the memorial, one among so many killed in action