Menin Gate

The Menin Gate is a memorial to the missing. It is dedicated to the thousands of soldiers who were killed in Ypres in WWI who's graves are unknown.

The memorial holds the names of over 54,000 British and Commonwealth soldiers.

Menin Gate was built in the site where hundreds and thousands of men passed through on their way to the front line.

 
 
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"Now it can be said that each one of whose honour we are assembled here today:

'He is not missing, he is here'."

- Lord Plumer at the unveiling ceremony, 24th July 1927

 

It's hard to grasp just how necessary this memorial was; there were families who never saw their loved ones again, they didn't get to grieve, they had no coffin to lower down, no funeral to pay their respects, no chance to say goodbye. 

The amount of names was astounding, every corner you turned, more names were revealed. It was a lot to absorb. 


“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them."

- Laurence Binyon, For the Fallen, 1914

the last post ASSOCIATION 

In 1928, a group of Ypres locals organised the Last Post Ceremony which is held under the Menin Gate at 8pm every evening. The Last Post is played in honour of the hundreds of thousands soldiers who died during WWI.

The ceremony was very touching and involved a minutes silence and a wreath procession. On particular commemorative days, such as Armistace Day, the ceremony also includes a reading from Laurence Binyon's poem 'For The fallen'

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Poppies

On 8th August 2018, the British Royal Legion members came together in Ypres for the One Hundred Days Ceremony. They laid wreaths at Menin Gate during the ceremony to commemorate the lives lost during the war. An installation has been put together using these wreaths which bear names of each of the regions that soldiers were from. 

Poppies are extremely evocative and it's very clear why they are the symbol of War especially when seeing an installation such as this. It really does signify a field of blood. Again, it is appalling to see just how vast the amount of lives lost is.