Words and Pictures by Jane Orr
St Paul's Fine Weather Walkers and friends went to war! We went much further afield than usual and spent the Early Spring Bank Holiday weekend on the Somme.
We stayed in the village of Auchonvillers (known as Ocean Villas to the soldiers of the First World War) and walked over battlefields, visiting cemeteries and strategic points in the area over three days, walking some 13 miles.
We visited famous 1916 battlefields such as Mametz Wood and High Wood on Saturday, and on Sunday, after a service above a WW1 dressing station, walked from Beaumont Hamel to the Thiepval Memorial. Explanations of the sites we were seeing were given by military historian Michael Orr.
The two disappointing things about the weekend were the weather and the small numbers who came. There were 15 of us who had a fascinating and educative weekend in good company. To keep it "in the family" we were expertly driven by Mark Appleby who is the son-in-law of the vicar of St Michael’s, Revd Bruce Nicole.