I must credit my brother with the choice of places to visit, some of them he had visited before and others he had researched. But there are still so many places to visit, halfway between Poperinge and Ypres is the cemetery where Noel Chavasse is buried. A doctor who was awared the VC and bar.Day 2 - 30th July 2019
When we got up for breakfast it was another lovely sunny day so we (and the other guests) had breakfast outside.
This was a lovely place, this was the office next to where our bikes were parked
The owners told us that they were restoring another old house over the road to use as a holiday rental so we went and had a look at that.
I love the way that the tie bars have what is presumably the year that the house was built incorporated into them.
Inside some of it was complete, but some was still a work in progress
When we had discussed our plans for the day with our hosts they told us about a memorial a short distance away, so we went there first. Unless you went looking for it you would not find it by accident. It's set back a little from a tiny country road opposite fields, I would imagine that very little traffic apart from tractors passes there.
The crew of this Stirling were shot down by a night fighter in 1942 and crashed here with no survivors.
The pilot, William Greenslade, was on his 64th mission so presumably this was his third tour of duty.
These are fragments of the wreckage that were recast and incorporated into the memorial.
We went to Venlo to see where the Venlo Incident
occurred, where two British spies were captured in Germany just a few metres from the Dutch border and which was then used by the Germans to justify the invasion of Holland.
As we were there we rode over the border (a bridge) into Germany to see if we could find somewhere for a coffee and cake, but the two places in the nearest little town were both closed.
The main visit of the day was to the Overlooon War Museum
. If you are in the area then go and spend a day there, or just cycle through the vehicles hall on the bicycle bridge.
The museum is split into two parts, the first part is about the occupation of Holland and how the Dutch were treated. I had read about some of this and friends parents had told me about how it was when they lived through it as children but it's still horrific. Not always in a graphic way, there's a picture that I took of some Christmas decorations and the "normality" of it is chilling. I would post it here, but it seems there are no spoiler tags, but if you go and look at my album it should be obvious.
The second part of the museum is a massive mostly filled with WW2 vehicles up to Dakota size. I wish that I'd taken more pictures to include here because it wasn't just tanks and jeeps, there were mobile workshops opened up as they would be in use
I'm not quite sure why it was there, but there was a BARC
(the good looking person in the picture is about 6' 4" to give an idea of scale)
It's enormous. Huge. 4 engines, each driving a wheel. Engines coupled in pairs to drive the propellers. 100 ton payload.
Out of reach was this device for dealing with any stray trees.
Over in one corner was a display that had 1000 shells of all sizes. The model on the left is a Schwerer Gustav railway gun. This puny(!) thing is not the shell that it fired.
The thing on the left hand side is the propellant casing.
This is going to need more than some T-cut
I really need to go back again.
Time to head for our accomodation for the night which was in the Ardennes, so we headed south and stayed in another lovely place with lovely people. He kept his prized motorbike indoors (in the hallway) and insisted that we bring ours into the garage for the night.
Distance for the day 191 miles.