The War Research Society

I realise this is bit late but hopefully may be of use for the future. Ma and Pa Needlewaver have just returned from an excellent 4 day trip to France and Belgium covering Remembrance Sunday.

The company is run by a group of ex-coppers who have devoted their energies and time to running pilgrimages to the major battlefields of both World Wars, and each tour guide is extremely well versed in the minutiae of what happened and where, giving a full account with both compassion and respect.

They even go so far as to run pre-arranged mini-tours if you wish to see somewhere not on the main agenda, such as Ma and Pa visiting great Uncle Samuel (Private, 2nd Bn Worcs Regt) at Anneux Cemetary and great Uncle James (Sergeant, Machine Gun Corps (I)) at the Cambrai Memorial for The Missing. The trip culminates at the Menin Gate for the Act of Remembrance.

In short, whilst I hold no brief for this group, nothing is too much trouble to arrange or organize. They even maintain a fund to allow relatives (now usually descendants, but sometimes still Widows to attend even if their cash flow won't stretch to it). All I can say is, when they got back, it's the first time I've EVER seen my Dad cry and he's 68. I'm sure other Battlefield Tour Companies are just as good but this one seemed to do the trick.

An Old Soldier's Last Resting Place

Old Harry's remains lie in Mametz Wood
Where his heart had always been
Ever since he'd buried his friends there
In the summer of nineteen sixteen

Last Tuesday we paid him a visit
We met with his son Michael, there
A Padre said prayers, as the autumn fell
A lament on the Pipes filled the air

We drank a whisky to the memory of Harry and friends
Then we turned and left that place
Was that a young soldier watching us leave
With the hint of a smile on his face?

Just a trick of the light on falling leaves
For there's no such thing as ghosts, so we're told
But perhaps it was young Harry bidding farewell
To us, that are left grow old...

written by Mr Ron Keene

After a visit to the resting place of Harry Fellows in Mametz Wood, Tuesday 10th November 1998.

(Is it me or is it dusty in here?)

Edited for linky.

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