Numerous monuments and relics all over Langemark-Poelkapelle are a reminder of the suffering of the First World War.
In Langemark, Poelkapelle, Bikschote, Madonna and St. Julian there are monuments in memory of the military and civilian victims of Langemark-Poelkapelle of both World Wars. The monuments and/or commemorative plaques are always located near the parish churches. Victims of the First World War of Langemark-Poelkapelle can be searched for by using ‘The names List’ of the In Flanders Fields Museum -Website.
The Tank Memorial Ypres Salient was inaugurated on the 10th of oktober 2009 to remember all the victims of the tankcorps regiment during the First and second World war at the Ypres Salient. The monument is standing at the center of Poelkapelle. During 1917, a hugh tankbattle took place at Poelkapelle. A lot of British tanks were stucked in the mud of have been put under heavy fire. What was left, were a lot of dammaged tank vehicles along the road from Sint-Julian to Poelcapelle. The Damon II was one of those tanks, who stuck deep in the mud in the center of Poelkapelle. In 1923 the tank has been replaced to the market square and became an attraction, especially for the British tourist. In 1941, the tank has been dismantled by the Germans.
As a reminder of the heroic commitment of the crew members, of which about 200 lost their lives in the Ypres Salient, an official Tank Memorial Ypres Salient was inaugurated at the market square next to the place where the tank once stood. During the inauguration ceremony, an authentic steel fragment of a tank plate was also attached to the monument. The memorial book contains a list of 244 tank soldiers who were buried or commemorated in Belgium. 243 from WW1 and 1victim from WW2
Memorial Cross 3rd and 23rd Line Regiment - Provincieweg 2
Memorial in remembrance of the soldiers of the 3rd and 23rd Line Regiment, who were often deployed near Steenstraete.
Memorial 20th Light Division - Boezingestraat 73- 75
The monument commemorates the participation of the '20 Light Division in the so-called Battle of Langemark (16-18 August 1917). The monument was unveiled on 5 June 1927
Monument 34th British Division - Beekstraat
The memorial is in remembrance of the 34th British Division which played its part in the fighting on Beekstraat during the third battle of Ypres.
Hertfordshire Regiment Memorial - Onze Lieve vrouwstraat
Memorial inaugurated on 31 July 2017, 100 years after the Hertfordshire regiments took part in the first days of the third Battle of Ypres in this area.
Memorial 1st Monmountshire Battalion - Roeselarestraat
Second Lieutenant Henry Anthony Birrell-Anthony, of the small town of Thame in County Oxfordshire, England, was one of many dead in the 1st Monmouthshire Regiment on 8 May 1915 whose body was not recovered and whose name is on the Menin Gate. His father, Henry Birrell-Anthony Senior, Lieutenant Colonel of the 2/1 Monmouths, erected the memorial where his son was believed to have fallen. It was adopted by the regiment, making it semi-official, and is maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.
Memorial stone Kitchener's Wood - Vineyard Street
Memorial stone commemorating the victims of the second battle of Ypres. The name Kitchener's Wood comes from a literal translation by the British of "Bois des cuisiniers" which the French had given to the field kitchens in the forest. After the first use of gas as a weapon of mass destruction, there was heavy fighting on this spot the following days.
Charles Dresse - Poperingestraat
At the outbreak of the Great War, 17-year-old "Carli" wanted to volunteer. On Christmas 1914 he obtained parental consent and fled occupied Belgium by crossing the heavily guarded border in 's Gravenvoeren. He reached neutral Holland where he volunteered for war at the Belgian Consulate in Maastricht.
On 28 September 1918, the first day of the Liberation Offensive, around 10 o'clock, the 9° Line Regiment, to which he belonged, passed the swampy Watervlietbeek during the attack on Hill 25 under close German machinegun fire.
Adjutant Dresse replaced his wounded commander and at the moment he was crying "En avant!, he was shot dawn.
Peace Tree - Brugseweg
The peace oak and the information board recall the fighting at Kitchener's Wood during the night of 22 to 23 April 1915, when the Canadian '10th Battalion (2nd Canadian Infantry Brigade)' and '16th Battalion (3rd Canadian Infantry Brigade)' were the first to counter-attack after the German gas attack of the 22nd of April 1915.
Memorial tree : 100 years armistice - Grounds German Military Cemetery
Commemoration tree planted on November 11, 2018 to commemorate the end of the First World War
Peace Signpost - Klerkenstraat
The Peace Signpost marks places where chemical weapons were still used in warfare after the 22th of April 1915.
Memorial plaque French 87th Division d'Infanterie Territoriale - Kasteelstraat 1
This memorial plaque was erected in memory of the 87th French Territorial Division (which consisted mainly of older reserve soldiers called Pépères). Together with the 45th Algerian Division, also known as 'Les Joyeux', they were victims of the first large-scale chlorine gas attack on April 22,1915.
Memorial plaque 16th and 36th Irish Division - Hazeweidestraat
From 18 to 20 August 1917 the 16th Irish-Catholic and the 36th Ulster Protestant divisions fought side by side during the Third Battle of Ypres. Just as they did a few months ago in Wijtschate. This battle wasn’t a success. This plaque commemorates the events and Father Doyle, a special chaplain who died during this battle.
Memorial plaque Royal Naval Division - Varlet Farm - Wallemolenstraat 43
In memory of the more than 2000 deaths of the Royal Naval Division during the final days of the Third Battle of Ypres.
Memorial stone 2nd Chasseurs d’Afrique - Beekstraat
This monument commemorates Emilien Girault and André Etienne Malliavin, respectively Brigadier and Adjutant with the '2nd Regiment Chasseurs d'Afrique', who died on this spot on the 9th of October 1917. Malliavin was immediately reported as 'missing'. Girault was reported as killed by shells’ and buried at St Charles de Potyze in Ypres. The 'Chasseurs d'Afrique' were part of the French cavalry.
Commemorative stone Hugot - Hugotstraat
Monument and small piece of nature donated by the Parisian Hugot family to the town council in memory of their son who died in the area.
Namestone Eindoffensief Steenbeek - Boezingestraat near house number 89
The final offensive started on the 28th of September 1918. Belgian divisions were ready on the eve of the final offensive at the Steenbeek river.
Memorial plaque Hedd Wyn - Boezingestraat 158
Ellis Humphrey Evans was born in 1887 in a largely Welsh village in North Wales. From 1906 he took part in traditional poetry contests. In 1910 he was given the pseudonym 'Hedd Wyn' ('Shining Peace'). On 31 July 1917 the 15th battalion 'Royal Welsh Fusiliers' captured the Pilkem Ridge and then advanced to 'Iron Cross' ('Hagebos'). Private Evans was hit and died at the age of 30, probably in a first aid post near 'Iron Cross'. He was buried at Artillery Wood Cemetery at Boezinge. Hedd Wyn posthumously won the national poetry competition, was awarded the 'Seat' prize and became a national legend. A Last Post ceremony is held at the memorial plaque every first monday of the month at 7 pm.
Memorial plaque Edward Donald Bellew - crossroads Zonnebekestraat and Brugseweg
A bronze plaque commemorates Lieutenant Edward Donald Bellew of the 7th Canadian Infantry Battalion. Bellew was present in this area when in the early morning of April 24, 1915, for the second time chlorine gas was unloaded from the German trenches a few hundred meters further on.
Memorial Private Dancox – crossroads Galgestraat and Vrijbosroute
A memorial erected for Victoria Cross winner Dancox on 9 October 1917. Private Frederick George Dancox, a 37 year old farmer from the town of Worcester, had managed to get unnoticed behind the hostile bunker. Partly due to the surprise effect and under the threat of a grenade, he forced a garrison of 40 German soldiers to give up. A month and a half later, on November 30th, he was killed in Cambrai.
Memorial Jozef Lister - Schreiboomstraat
The first Battalion Lancashire Fusiliers went into battle but encountered heavy opposition from a series of bunkers south and north of Olga House. While the commander was carrying out a risk analysis, Sergeant Joseph Lister decided to go out on his own and destroyed a machine gun station, stationed in a bomb crater in front of the bunker. After taking out the shooters, he called out to the other Germans to surrender. About a hundred German soldiers surrendered. Now the Battalion could move on and reach its first target.
Memorial Stone Private Stephen Henshaw - Zonnebekestraat
This stone is reminiscent of Private Stephen Henshaw of the Oxford and Bucks Light Infantry. He died at the age of 30 on 23 August 1917. He is buried at Dozinghem Military Cemetery in Perk III Row H Grave 7. Henshaw was wounded at the Battle of Langemark on 16 August 1917. He lay on the field behind the memorial for six days until he could finally be transferred to 'Casualty Clearing Station 61, Dozinghem' near Proven on 22 August. There he died the next day from his injuries.
Memorial Ivor Gurney - Hazeweidestraat 13
Memorial stone erected for the poet and composer Ivor Gurney who fell victim to a German gas attack in September 1917 near Hill 35. The war stopped here for him. He died on 26 December 1937 in the City of London psychiatric hospital.
Memorial plaque Thomas Witham - Free Woods Route
Private Thomas Whitham distinguished himself, near Captain's Farm. (Groenestraat). A German machine gun in a concrete position fired at the advancing battalion in the flank. Private Whitham, on his own initiative, demolished from shelter to shelter amidst the artillery shelling, took control of the machine gun on his own, capturing a German officer and two soldiers.
Memorial plaque 48th Higlanders of Canada - Brugseweg and O.L.Vrouwstraat
More information about the First World War and Langemark-Poelkapelle can be found at: