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Remembered Today:

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38th Division Welsh Dragon, Mametz Wood


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#1 rendellers

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Posted 15 August 2009 - 04:01 PM

I will happily admit to being half Welsh having visited this. I was worried that this memorial would look out of place being basically so large, red and modern but it was fantastic.The shot from behind that I took by walking further up the bank shows that within the scale of the area the statue actually is quite small. I felt it was just about to take off and soar over the wood. Particularly liked the distainful way the barbed wire is gripped and found the whole thing very emotive. Was very surpised to find not one but two items of iron harvest within yards of the steps leading up to the statue. We actually got ourselves very confused and approached this from the wrong end of the road but fortunately it was very dry, we paused outside Flat Iron copse to remember the sets of brothers within. How sad that they were killed trying to rescue each other.

link http://www.flickr.co...57622045592252/

#2 chrissparrow

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Posted 15 August 2009 - 05:29 PM

Glorious beast, is she not!
Every Somme trip I take I lunch my group under her. Special place. Secret clue.....walk the wood at midnight! Nothing will prepare you for this and you will never forget it!

Chris

#3 Phil_B

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Posted 15 August 2009 - 06:10 PM

I`m a dracophile but I was disappointed in the tongue and tail - too whimsical. The standard dragon would, IMHO, be better.

#4 ww1ptepatteson

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Posted 16 August 2009 - 09:56 AM

I visited the memorial a few years past and to be honest at first I was disappointed at the size. All the tour books made it out to be much larger. But after spending a bit of time I really got to like the memorial and it is one of my favourites on the Western front.


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#5 Bernard_Lewis

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Posted 16 August 2009 - 05:57 PM

Nice photos. Were the shells in the wood or where?

Bernard

#6 Garron

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    10th & 13th Welsh at Mametz Wood 1916

Posted 16 August 2009 - 06:08 PM

The two brothers, Thomas and Henry Hardwidge, from my hometown Ferndale in the Rhondda.
thier parents John (died May 21st 1904 Aged 51) and Pheobe (died Feb 10th 1911 aged 59 Years) are buried near to my great grandparents, thier grave has a little inscription comemorating them and thier other son Morgan killed Christmas day 1916.

Sadly thier obituaries mention thier brother Morgan who was later killed. Who according to the memorial on the grave was 47 years old in 1916, The other two brothers ages were not listed.
Thomas lived in his parents old home 17 High Street, Ferndale. He had a wife and 3 Children, Henry had a wife and 1 child.

According to this site there was another Brother Ben Hardwidge, I've not really reserched them just peiced together from this site and a little bit of reseach I did last year, I will one day give thier history a good look over.

http://www.anglesey....ndda_Heroes.htm


Gaz

#7 rjaydee

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Posted 16 August 2009 - 07:07 PM

Excuse butting in, but going to stay Arras in October next, would love to visit this monument, is it within striking distance of Arras ? for a mini-bus full of ex Lancs Fusiliers on a pilgramage. Ralph.

#8 Bernard_Lewis

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Posted 16 August 2009 - 10:22 PM

We stayed in Arras (on an organised bus tour) and got to Mametz quite easily.

Bernard

#9 archibaldsidney

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 05:27 PM

To Lieutenant General. You may be a dracophile but did you know that a real welsh dragon is composed of parts of 13 animals/beasts. This dragon accurately represents this as David Petersen the sculptor deliberatley built this in to the design. An ordinary dragon would no be good enough. David ought to know he has crafted enough. Brilliant thaqt so many people find the monument emotive and inspirational.
Phil D

#10 Tom Tulloch-Marshall

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Posted 29 February 2012 - 06:04 PM

I manage to dislike almost all "modern" sculpture, but am always impressed when the 38th's Dragon comes into view. I always get the feeling that its "the right thing, in the right place"; very symbolic and tastefully done, but at the same time it "shouts" at you, it has presence. It and the 51st's memorial at Y Ravine are my two favorite memorials on the Somme.

Chris - post #2 - Many, many years ago I walked about 2/3 the length of the interior of Mametz Wood, in daylight. It was one of only two WW1 sites which have ever "spooked" me.

Attached File  GWF 38Div Sim 12-2011 .JPG   45.8KB   2 downloads

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#11 khaki

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Posted 01 March 2012 - 12:43 AM

I manage to dislike almost all "modern" sculpture, but am always impressed when the 38th's Dragon comes into view. I always get the feeling that its "the right thing, in the right place"; very symbolic and tastefully done, but at the same time it "shouts" at you, it has presence. It and the 51st's memorial at Y Ravine are my two favorite memorials on the Somme.

Chris - post #2 - Many, many years ago I walked about 2/3 the length of the interior of Mametz Wood, in daylight. It was one of only two WW1 sites which have ever "spooked" me.

Attached File  GWF 38Div Sim 12-2011 .JPG   45.8KB   2 downloads

Tom


It is strange (perhaps not so) how frequently visitors to Mametz Wood, comment on the 'haunted environment' (my words) of being watched etc.,I know there is another thread that explores this and similar 'feelings' experienced elsewhere. If I remember correctly Mametz Wood was the most numerous of posted replies.
khaki

#12 KIRKY

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Posted 01 March 2012 - 11:04 AM

Which part of the Wood is best to walk at night? I like scaring myself!
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#13 BPJermyn

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Posted 01 March 2012 - 03:39 PM

Excuse butting in, but going to stay Arras in October next, would love to visit this monument, is it within striking distance of Arras ? for a mini-bus full of ex Lancs Fusiliers on a pilgramage. Ralph.


Last summer I stayed in Arras and the stop to the memorial was done on one of my day trips from there so it's very reachable