POW COMPANY 2 PLATOON
At the start of their tour of the battlefields of WW1 towards the end of July, members of 2 Platoon, The Prince of Wales’s Company, were fortunate enough to be a part of the Menin Gate’s daily Last Post ceremony, laying a wreath in memory of our fallen.
The Gate was unveiled in July 1927 to commemorate all those British and Commonwealth servicemen who fell on the Ypres Salient during the First World War whose bodies were never found, and who have no other memorial.
The following day, 2 Platoon visited Pilkem Ridge, where the Welsh Guards fought on the 31st July 1917 and Sgt. Robert Bye earned his Victoria Cross. We were able to retrace the battalions steps and see where they fought and died. We later visited the graves of some of those who fell that day and paid our respects at the Welsh Memorial. Sgt. Evans placed a cross at the Artillery Wood Cemetery and LCpl. Coy a wreath at the Welsh Memorial.
The next place visited by 2 Platoon was Sanctuary Wood, where a well preserved trench system proved a memorable experience for the Platoon. We later visited the Langemark German cemetery which contains the remains of 44,000 German soldiers. The mass grave near the entrance alone holds the remains of nearly 25,000 men. The day finished by retracing the steps of the battalion at the Battle of Poelcappelle, (9 October 1917) which marked the end of a series of highly successful British attacks in late September and early October 1917, during the Third Battle of Ypres
Along with the Company Commander, 2 Platoon set off on what was a grey, wet and windy day to complete their Marathon. The 26-mile route started and finished at the Menin Gate, Ypres, Belgium.
The Gate was unveiled in July 1927 to commemorate all those British and Commonwealth servicemen who fell on the Ypres Salient during the First World War whose bodies were never found and who have no other memorial.