Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Ypres, Menin Gate Memorial, Belgium

Ypres (now Ieper) is a town in the Province of West Flanders. The Memorial is situated at the eastern side of the town on the road to Menin (Menen) and Courtrai (Kortrijk).  The Menin Gate is one of four memorials to the missing in Belgian Flanders which cover the area known as the Ypres Salient. The Salient was formed during the First Battle of Ypres in October and November 1914, when a small British Expeditionary Force succeeded in securing the town before the onset of winter, pushing the German forces back to the Passchendaele Ridge. The Second Battle of Ypres began in April 1915 when the Germans released poison gas into the Allied lines north of Ypres. This was the first time gas had been used by either side and the violence of the attack forced an Allied withdrawal and a shortening of the line of defence.

The battles of the Ypres Salient claimed many lives on both sides and it quickly became clear that the commemoration of members of the Commonwealth forces with no known grave would have to be divided between several different sites. The site of the Menin Gate was chosen because of the hundreds of thousands of men who passed through it on their way to the battlefields. It commemorates those of all Commonwealth nations except New Zealand who died in the Salient before 16 August 1917.

Commemorates more than 54,000 officers and men who were killed on the Ypres Salient from the beginning of the war to the opening of the Passchendaele offensive (16th August 1917).

All photographs in this section taken by Shirley Sutherland, Golspie

See also

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing this post. There were many wars held in the Ypres Salient region which is a famous place in Belgium. The Ypres salient was established by Belgian, French, British as well as Canadian. The area where the battle was held is almost flat with some rises or the small hills. The military grounds in Ypres are of different sizes and a must watch.spring is a best season to visit Ypres. For more details refer Ypres salient