A slight change of plan this morning after looking at the weather. We were due to start the last day of our walk at Delville Wood, but have decided to swap the morning and afternoon itinerary around. So our first port of call today was Thiepval Memorial. A truly humbling memorial to the men who have no known grave. There are thousands of names engraved into the stone walls of this memorial. It really makes you appreciate the sacrifice these brave men made.
We had a walk round the memorial, or as best we could as it is covered in scaffolding at the moment. We laid some poppy crosses and then took a look inside the visitor centre before setting off on todays route.
We walked down the road towards La Boiselle stopping at Authuille Military Cemetery and Blighty Valley Cemetery. We were passed by many runners who were taking part in a half marathon today. We gave them lots of encouragement as they passed us. The clouds were getting fuller and darker as we progressed along the road.
Passing Crucifix Corner we walked the last stretch of road up to La Boiselle. Stopping at The Tyneside Memorial so that Audrey could lay a poppy cross. Next stop Old Blighty Tea Rooms for lunch.
Just as we sat down to eat the heavens opened! It absolutely poured down. But we are the Wenches and it did not put us off one bit. So after lunch, and a quick hello to some of our lovely supporters, we made our way to Fricourt.
First stop Fricourt German Cemetery. A stark place filled with black crosses…and a few Jewish headstones. It seemed even more stark in this torrential rain. Next down the road to the Fricourt New Cemetery. A little bit of puddle jumping was involved along the way, it was great fun.
After Fricourt New Cemetery we retraced our steps a little back to the junction that takes us up towards Lochnagar Crater.
Tarmac for the first ten minutes of walking then the road turns into farm tracks. In this rain that meant lots of very slippery mud. It made us all appreciate what it must have been like for the men during the war having to live in the mud for all that time. It must have been horrendous. We got very muddy, very quickly. We were very glad to see our support vehicle parked next to the crater in the distance. A last push on and we made it to our final stop, Lochnagar Crater. We have walked a total of 28km over the last two days.
We were met at the crater by more supporters and friends of Lochnagar to help us lay a wreath at our bench. We are very proud of all the walkers who have taken part in this years walk. They have all done amazingly, even with some injuries. Well done to you all and thank you so much for taking the time to take part. Thank you to all our supporters and everyone that has donated or sponsored a walker. Now we are all going for a nice hot shower and a well deserved drink.
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