Disquieting news from Fromelles

This disturbing report from Victoria Burbidge, representing the British Memorial Association, Fromelles, via Chris Baker’s Long Long Trail, deserves wider circulation.

National interests from the French & Australian authorities appear to be attempting to airbrush out the entire British contribution to the war in this area as it does not fit within the “scenography” of the new Pheasant Wood Cemetery’s visitor centre.

A very disappointing development – the British Memorial Association, Fromelles deserves all the support it can get to resist this.

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2 thoughts on “Disquieting news from Fromelles

  1. Mmmm. I read all of the FB comments and the whole post on Chris’ site. Some mixed messages coming out here, which why it is all the more important for guides like myself to ensure that guests get the full story. I take many Australians there and have, perhaps, been guilty of underplaying the British role in the area. Part of what I do is to ensure guests get out of any trip what they expect, and a good bit more, so I will need to reassess the way I do things here, I think.
    I suspect many of us are more irritated with the way petty politics has interfered with battlefield visits and areas. The recent Normandy petition to ensure Sword Beach is properly covered is another example this week. There have been countless other examples of parochial silliness across the Western Front in recent years too. Too many wanting their ‘moment of glory’ at the expense of the Boys. Not good.

  2. You are in a difficult position Mark – in that you have to play to your customers so some degree of emphasis is going to be unavoidable. On the other side of the coin, there has been a bit of a tendency to regard the Western Front as “our” battleground and we have probably all neglected the French contribution to some extent – this might be unintentional payback. All very sad though as this was a global conflict that affected all the nations involved so any Centenary activity that does not paint a true and balanced picture is deeply regrettable.

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