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Away Days

My most recent posts have been rather focused on photographs. This is because I’ve been away. Myself and the good lady have been in The Netherlands again and this time also in Belgium.

We drove down through England (and back up again) to and from the ferry and through the Netherlands and Belgium top to bottom and back. I’m a bit knackered.

But…… I have seen Ypres (nowadays spelled Ieper) and the Menin Gate where we witnessed the nightly Last Post. We walked along the Menin Road, a place I had only ever read about or seen in photographs in a shell shattered state, passing Hellfire Corner on the way.

The hotel we stayed in was right beside the Hooghe Crater and across the Menin Road from the Hooge Crater Commonwealth War Cemetery (note the British spelling.) Right by the hotel there was an open air Great War Museum which encompassed the crater and some trench remnants. The Front Line straddled that part of the Menin Road from 1915-1917. Hooghe was where the first use of flame throwers in a concerted action took place when the Germans made an attack on July 30th 1915. The trenches were apparently only 4.5 meters (4.9 yards) apart there. The flamethrower’s maximum range was 18 meters (20 yards.)

Strange to think I slept only a few more meters away from the spot. It’s all so peaceful there now but reminders of that war are everywhere as the area is covered in War Cemeteries and Memorial sites – too many for us to visit them all.

Freuchie War Memorial

Freuchie is a village in Fife situated just off the A 92, north of Glenrothes, about three miles or so from Son of the Rock Acres.

Freuchie was once used as a place of banishment form the nearby Royal Court at Falkland Palace but is perhaps most famous now for its cricket team reaching and winning – at Lord’s – the village cricket championship in 1985. Falkland also has a cricket team.

Freuchie’s War Memorial lies in a triangular shaped kind of traffic island hard by the local church on the mainroad through the town, the B 936 .

Freuchie War Memorial

Showing inscriptions. 1914-19 names on plaque, 1939-45 on pedestal. (The Lomond Hills Hotel is in the background):-

Freuchie War Memorial

Commonwealth War Graves, St Andrews

I noticed the sign for Commonwealth War Graves as we were passing St Andrews Cemetery on Strathkiness Road and stopped to take photos on the way back home. Commonwealth War Grave stones are easily picked out by their distinctive shape and colour, though some of these were in grey granite rather than the usual off-white. I also found the grave of a member of the Polish Forces.

There were twelve graves in all.

Gunner A M Pirie, RA, 6/8/1942.
Bombardier D B Tulleth, RA, 12/11/1944, age 36.
Private F Dickinson, KOYLI, 15/8/1940, age 24.
Private J McIvor, Black Watch, 19/7/1915.
H C Barr, Merchant Navy, 7/2/1946, age 41.
Driver J Thomson, RE, 10/6/1946, age 19.
Guardsman W Murray, Scots Guards, 23/7/1945, age 29.
PIT S Glabinski, Polish Forces, 13/2/1941, age 34.
Sergeant W H Stewart, RAF, 11/7/1944, age 43.
Private F Higgins, HLI, 19/5/1918.
Private T Robinson, Cameronians, 26/7/1918.
Able Seaman F Shearer, RN, 25/12/1918.

Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 1
Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 2
Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 3
Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 4
Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 5
Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 6
Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 7
Polish War Grave St Andrew's
Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 8
Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 9
Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 10
Commonwealth War Grave St Andrew's 11

Fife’s Art Deco Heritage 15 (ii): Rosyth Again

On the corner of Queensferry and Admiralty Roads, Rosyth stands the Ex-Servicemen’s Club, which has some deco features.

Stitch of two photos from Admiralty Road:-

Ex-Servicemen's Club, Rosyth

From Queensferry Road. Note memorial wreath on wall:-

Ex-Servicemen's Club, Rosyth from East

Detail, Queensferry Road:-

Ex-Servicemen's Club, Rosyth from north-east

Wreath and Plaque, Ex-Servicemen’s Club, Rosyth:-

Wreath, Ex-Servicemen's Club, Rosyth

Plaque to Users, Ex-Servicemen’s Club, Rosyth:-

Plaque to Users, Ex-Servicemen's Club, Rosyth

War Graves, Edinburgh

These were both in New Calton Burial Ground, Edinburgh.

M Miller, Royal Scots, 5/8/1916, age 36.

War Grave, Edinburgh

There was an unusaul communal gravestone for seamen of the Merchant Navy Merchant Navy inscribed, “Five Sailors of the 1939-45 War, MV Atheltemplar, 1/3/1941.”

Communal War Gravestone, Edinburgh

On 1/3/1941 the Atheltemplar was attacked by Heinkel 111s off the Aberdeenshire coast. A total of 12 crewmembers died. This stone commemorates the five who were unidentified.

War Grave, Dunfermline Abbey Church

Flight Cadet A A Hepburn, RAF, 23/8/1918, aged 18.

War Grave, Dunfermline Abbey Church

War Memorial, West Bridgend Church, Dumbarton

West Bridgend Church hall was where I started playing badminton, long, long ago now.

I had never explored its churchyard till last October when I discovered this Memorial to the men from the church who died in the Great War:-

War Memorial, West Bridgend Church, Dumbarton

The names:-

West Bridgend Church War Memorial Names

There was also a Commonwealth War Grave. Private William C Douglas, RAMC, 7/12/1916, age 19:-

War Grave West Bridgend Church

And this gravestone commemorates, as well as his father, one Captain William Learmonth Buchanan, 5th HLI, killed in action in Palestine, 20th November 1917, aged 25:-

Gravestone, West Bridgend Church

Cardross War Memorial

This lies beside the main road through the town, which is on the A 814 between Dumbarton and Helensburgh.

Cardross War Memorial

Closer view:-

Cardross War Memorial Close-up

Left-hand name panels:-

Cardross War Memorial Name Plaques

Right-hand name panels:-

Cardross War Memorial Names

Falkland War Memorial

Falkland is a village quite close to where I now live and at present houses one of those Fife libraries which are to be shut down.

The village’s dominating landmark is Falkland Palace the hunting lodge of Scotland’s Stuart Kings (and Queens.)

The village does have a relation to the perhaps more famous location in the South Atlantic as the Falkland Islands were named after Anthony Cary, 5th Viscount of Falkland. The Viscounts Falkland took their title from Falkland Palace.

Falkland’s War Memorial is relatively new, being erected only in the last year or so. The names are listed under First World War, Second World War, Other Conflicts. The word dziękuję, which I believe is Polish for “thank you”, is inscribed at the bottom, though there aren’t any Polish names on the memorial, as far as I can make out.

Falkland War Memorial

Reverse view. Arms of Falkland in the cartouche:-

Falkland War Memorial Reverse

The old memorial was a plaque which has been housed in various locations in the village. The below is from the Scottish Military Research Group’s website where the plaque was said to be within the building occupied by “Smart Cookies” – a children’s play-group. I believe the plaque has now been moved to the Village Hall.

Old Falkland War Memorial Plaque

Cowdenbeath World War 2 Memorial

This is on the High Street outside a local government office. The plaque is divided into Navy, Army, RAF and civilian deaths. The lower plaque is heade Armed Forces and records a death in Iraq 2007.

Cowdenbeath’s Great War Memorial is on top of a hill overlooking the High Street but is not as easily accessible as this one.

Cowdenbeath World War 2 Memorial

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