Iconic Images
Iconic Images

Seeing the three crosses on display in Durham Cathedral was one of the inspirations behind the photographs displayed in the Exhibition, 'Neasham Remembers'. Those crosses stood on the top of the Butte de Warlencourt during the Battle of Somme in 1917, and still survive today.

Another inspiration was Richard Dunning.  One man is responsible for reclaiming the crater at Lochnagar from desecration and preserving it for future generations. Images of the crater can be viewed on the Crater gallery page.

In addition, the remains of the Trenches in the mist at Beaumont Hamel, and the mud in the fields at Hawthorn Ridge evoked an emotional response in many people who visited the Exhibition

King visits battlefield

King visits battlefield

King George V with General Sir Julian Byng, Commander of the Third Army at the 6th Battalion, Durham Light Infantry Memorial, Butte de Warlencourt, Le Sars, 12 Jul 1917. This is one of three crosses on display in Durham Cathedral to mark the centenary of the Battle of the Somme.

© IWM (Q 5670)

The Somme Crosses, Durham Cathedral

The Somme Crosses, Durham Cathedral

When the crosses were removed from the Battlefield in 1927, the largest cross (the Durham Light Infantary Regimental Cross) was placed in Durham Cathedral. The 6th Battalion Cross went to its home in St Andrew's Church, South Church, Bishop Auckland, whilst the 8th Battalion Cross went to St Cuthbert's Church, Chester le Street. They were brought together in Durham Cathedral in 2016 as part of the commemorations of the centenary of the Battle of the Somme.

Mud at Hawthorn Ridge

Mud at Hawthorn Ridge

The mud was nothing like it must have been during the Battle of the Somme, but it gives an impression of how difficult the conditions were.

The Newfoundland Memorial, Beaumont Hamel

The Newfoundland Memorial Park, Beaumont Hamel

The memorial park was opened in 1925 as a memorial, not only to the Royal Newfoundland Regiment,  but to all who lost their lives during the war. Canadian students studying Conflict Studies spend a semester working in every aspect of the Park. After being warmly greeted when I arrived on a cold misty day, I hopped over a small fence to take this image.  I was immediately requested firmly to step back as I was not supposed to be there.

The resulting image was worth getting my knuckles rapped!

The Butte de Warlencourt

The Butte de Warlencourt

Today, visitors access the Butte from a carpark, and walk up the track to the summit. This small, insignificant hill was fought over during the Franco-Prussian war of 1871, and again during the Great War, changing hands several times.