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Battle of Broodseinde Ridge

The Battle of Broodseinde Ridge was part of the Third Battle of Ypres and began on 4 October 1917. Its aim was to capture the ridge or higher ground that overlooked Ypres (Ieper). It involved the Australian 1st, 2nd and 3rd Divisions next to the New Zealand Division. The ANZACs attacked on a broad front from the tiny hamlet of s-Graventafel to beyond the town of Zonnebeke

 
   

1917/18
   
   
Present
Present
   
   

Tyne Cot Cemetery

Tyne Cot is the largest Commonwealth War Graves (CWG) cemetery and contains the remains of over 11,000 soldiers (and also the largest number of Australians in any one cemetery). It commands the top of Broodseinde Ridge and contains two intact German pillboxes. Standing on top of a pillbox it is easy to see why this position was so valued and much fought over. There is an extensive view from here looking down on the whole Ypres sector, with the spires of Ieper visible on the horizon. There are five panoramic views of Tyne Cot :

  1. The Top of the Eastern Pillbox
  2. Standing Amongst the Headstones
  3. The Southern Side of the Cross
  4. The Northern Side of the Cross
  5. The New Zealand Memorial

Anzac Walk

The Anzac Walk is a paved track that goes from the village of Zonnebeke to Tyne Cot Cemetery following the course of a former railway line. It roughly follows the start line of the Australian attack and there are panels along the walk explaining the significance of each location. If one looks closely, it is possible to see both destroyed and intact pillboxes in the paddocks. Mainly, one views the things of present day, ordinary life in this area such as wheat fields, houses, hot houses, sheds and barns. There are five panoramas of the Anzac Walk:

  1. Access through the civilian cemetery at Zonnebeke
  2. The start near Zonnebeke
  3. The wheatfield
  4. The pig barn
  5. The destroyed pillbox

3rd Division Attack

This started at Dochy Farm Cemetery and weaved cross the broad valley towards Broodseinde Ridge and Tyne Cot Cemetery. I followed the path of the Australians along a farm road past farmhouses that were formerly the German strong points of Israel, Judah and Springfield where I met Michel Taillien. There are four panoramas in this tour:

  1. Dochy Farm Cemetery
  2. Springfield Farm
  3. The semi-hidden Pillbox
  4. Inside the pillbox

Passchendaele Chateau Museum

This excellent small museum at Zonnebeke has a reconstructed dugout as one of its displays. Experience the dugout by opening the Dugout Panorama.

   
         

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Peter Morrissey 2009