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WW1 Photos Centenary Website: 2014-2018 By Paul Reed

Messines: In The Trenches

My new television series, WW1 Tunnels of Death: The Big Dig, starts this evening on Channel 5 and today there will some posts connected with the programme and the dig we followed for more than six months in Flanders.

As part of the research for the series I was able to source a number of original images showing the village of Messines during the German occupation before everything was destroyed and also showing some of the trenches. This image was one from a small collection showing the typical trench construction in the front line area of the battlefield west of Messines. This particular trench is Weißergraben and lead to the front line area close to where the New Zealand Memorial is now located. The steel door seen in the trench may well be a kiln door from the brick factory that was on the edge of the village.

Trench floor uncovered, Messines 2012

The trench design and construction is particularly noteworthy as it pretty much reflected what the archaeologists found during the dig; this style of trench support, trench wall and trench floor were all found. This will all be seen in tonights episode, starting on Channel 5 at 20.00.

Trench wall uncovered, Messines 2012

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5 responses

  1. I look forward to the programme Paul, but I’ll have to video it because I have a writer’s group. Excellent, informative blog!

    08/11/2012 at 13:51

  2. Tony Jackson

    Really looking forward to the series as my Grandfather was in Ypres and won the MM for bravery on the field of battle.

    08/11/2012 at 16:06

  3. jackie stone

    great programme, are they leaving the trenches and tunnels

    16/11/2012 at 16:53

    • sommecourt

      No, they have all been removed but parts will be re-constructed in the Messines museum. The bunker will be preserved and open to the public from 2014.

      16/11/2012 at 19:44

  4. Any chance of a dvd going on sale?

    26/11/2012 at 18:15

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