Our Chairman's Tour for 2014 focuses on the Aisne sector for the fighting of both 1914 & 1918 and will follow the now familiar format of Clive Harris & Jack Sheldon providing the historical detail from both sides of the wire.
The clashes between the BEF and the German Army in September 1914 were critical in shaping the Western Front for the next four years. It brought to an end the open gun-sight war experience of the Gunner and ushered in the subterranean trench warfare of the Western Front. In 1917 the ground was the scene for the infamous Nivelle Offensive that led to little success and great unrest across large parts of the French Army.
By the time British units returned to the sector in May 1918 the line had settled down and was a restful location for units recovering from the March Offensive to the north. Within days of their arrival a fresh German assault ripped through the British lines leading to a number of last stands for units across the Chemin des Dames, most famously the 2nd Devon's defence of the Bois de Buttes.
Based in Laon with our traditional group meal on the final evening this tour promises to live up to previously well received Chairman's Tour's.
The tour will start at Ebbsfleet International Station that offers superb convenient links from London rail hubs and in addition offers secure parking at a reasonable rate. Transport via an executive standard coach and return channel crossing are also included throughout. The tour is limited to 35 spaces to ensure quality and make this tour feel like a personal pilgrimage as opposed to a large coach group. Personal visits to relatives or people of interest to you are positively encouraged and will be incorporated into the tour itinerary whilst these will be reflected as the group fills up a preliminary itinerary is planned as follows:
Friday 17 October 2014 – Pick up in Ebbsfleet & Dover (first pick up around 10:30 hours) and onward transfer to Laon, stop at the Adjacent British & German Cemeteries on the approach to Laon.
Saturday 18 October 2014 – Full days study of the 1914 fighting on the Aisne including Vendresse, Soupir & Vailly-sur-Aisne we end the day at the Cavern de Dragon
Sunday 19 October 2014 – Full days study of the 1918 fighting including the 50th Division Actions on the Californian Plateau and the Devon's at the Bois De Buttes, the retreat through Pontavert and ending at the CWGC Cemetery at La Ville Aux Bois to discover the story of Lt Col Christopher Buckle DSO, MC A group evening meal ends our tour.
Monday 20 October 2014 – Morning visit to the centre of Soissons to visit the Memorial to the Missing before onward travel back to the UK
As with previous Chairman's tours this is your tour so we would encourage personal visits across the Aisne area, to enable us to accommodate these into the itinerary please do get in touch.
Please use the documents downloadable below to make your booking.
Bookings should be sent direct to
Battle Honours Limited
Business & Technology Centre – F31
Herts SG1 2DX
Cheque payments should be made to "Battle Honours Ltd" and a £100.00 deposit secures your place.