PICARDY - Cambrai, Hindenburg Line & the Somme,
The opening day of the attack on the Somme on July 1st 1916 were the worst day in British military history with almost 20,000 dead and another wounded. Today the Newfoundland Memorial Park at Beaumont Hamel is one of the most complete and easily accessible "battlescapes" on the Western Front.
Constructed by the Germans in the winter of 1916-17, the Hindenburg Line was was a belt of in-depth fortifications stretching 150kms from Lens to Soissons. Regarded as impregnable, it's capture in September 1918 heralded the end of the war six weeks later.
CAMBRAI - 1917
A surprise British attack here on 20th Nov. 1917 using almost 400 tanks was the first mass use of tanks and achieved a five mile deep breakthrough. However a shortage of reserves and a furious German counter-attack meant that within days the attack had petered out and virtually no ground was gained.