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Vimy

Published March 9th, 2012

One of the items on my bucket list was to visit the Vimy Ridge Memorial in France.



The Battle of Vimy Ridge is an important event for Canadians. Many feel Canada started the battle as a Colony and reached the crest of the ridge as a Nation.



The Canadian National Vimy Memorial is a memorial site in France dedicated to the memory of Canadian Expeditionary Force members killed during the First World War. It also serves as the place of commemoration for First World War Canadian soldiers killed or presumed dead in France who have no known grave. The monument is the centrepiece of a 250-acre (100 ha) preserved battlefield park that encompasses a portion of the grounds over which the Canadian Corps made their assault during the Battle of Vimy Ridge, a military engagement fought as part of the Battle of Arras.



The Battle of Vimy Ridge was the first occasion whereupon all four divisions of the Canadian Expeditionary Force participated in a battle as a cohesive formation, and thus became a Canadian nationalistic symbol of achievement and sacrifice. In recognition of Canada's war efforts, France granted Canada perpetual use of a portion of land on Vimy Ridge under the understanding that the Canadians use the land to establish a battlefield park and memorial. Wartime tunnels, trenches, craters and unexploded munitions still honeycomb the grounds of the site, which remains largely closed off for public safety. Along with preserved trench lines, there are a number of other memorials and cemeteries contained within the site.



The memorial took monument designer Walter Seymour Allward eleven years to build. King Edward VIII unveiled the memorial on 26 July 1936, in the presence of French President Albert Lebrun, 50,000 or more Canadian and French veterans, and their families. Following an extensive multi-year restoration, Queen Elizabeth II rededicated the memorial on 9 April 2007 during a ceremony commemorating the 90th anniversary of the battle.



The memorial site is one of two National Historic Sites of Canada located outside of Canada and is maintained by Veterans Affairs Canada.



The Vimy Foundation is collecting donations to construct a new education center at Vimy in recognition of the 100th anniversary of the battle and victory at Vimy Ridge. For further information, visit https://vimyfoundation.ca/vimy2017/about/

Vimy Ridge Memorial

Vimy Ridge Memorial, Givenchy-en-Gohelle France.

Vimy Ridge Memorial

Vimy Ridge Memorial at the crest of the ridge, Givenchy-en-Gohelle France.

Vimy

The Canadian National Vimy Memorial is a memorial site in France dedicated to the memory of Canadian Expeditionary Force members killed during the First World War. It also serves as the place of commemoration for First World War Canadian soldiers killed or presumed dead in France, that have no known grave. The monument is the centrepiece of a 250-acre (100 ha) preserved battlefield park that encompasses a portion of the grounds over which the Canadian Corps made their assault during the Battle of Vimy Ridge, a military engagement fought as part of the Battle of Arras.

The keepers of hallowed grounds.

Sheep tending to the grounds of the Vimy Ridge Memorial for safty reasons due to the unexploded ordenance still burried in the battlefield.

The Ridge.

View of the memorial looking up the preserved battlefield park at the Vimy Ridge Memorial, Givenchy-en-Gohelle France. This is the approach the attack took up to Hill 145, the highest point of the ridge.

Mother Canada mourning her dead.

Dramatic statue dipicitng Mother Canada mourning her dead looks over the stone sarcophagus representing Canada's war dead at the base of the Vimy Ridge Memorial, Givenchy-en-Gohelle France.

11,285

Names of the missing carved on the memorial walls at the Vimy Ridge Memorial, Givenchy-en-Gohelle France.

Grange Trenches

Grange Trenches at Vimy Ridge Memorial, Givenchy-en-Gohelle France.

The fallen.

Theleus Military Cemetry, Theleus France. Burried here are fallen soldiers from the battle of Vimy Ridge.

Lest We Forget

Canadian Cementry No 2, Givenchy-en-Gohelle France. Located near Vimy Ridge. Burried here are fallen soldiers from the battle of Vimy Ridge.

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