Western Front Association Memorial


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Reference WMO255230

Address:

National Memorial Arboretum

Croxall Road

Alrewas

England

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Type: Non freestanding
Location: External
Setting: Within a garden/park/churchyard/enclosure/Marketplace
Description: Tree/s
Materials:
  • Flora and Fauna Tree(s)
Conflicts:
  • First World War (1914-1918)
About the memorial: A grove of Hornbeam trees (each with dedication) grown from the only tree left standing in Delville Wood after the Battle of the Somme. 19,000 men died on the first day. There is a stone memorial inscribed with the words from Binyon's poem "For the Fallen" and Sassoon's poem "Aftermath".
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Aftermath Have you forgotten yet?... For the world's events have rumbled on since those gagged days, Like traffic checked while at the crossing of city-ways: And the haunted gap in your mind has filled with thoughts that flow Like clouds in the lit heaven of life; and you're a man reprieved to go, Taking your peaceful share of Time, with joy to spare. But the past is just the same--and War's a bloody game... Have you forgotten yet?... Look down, and swear by the slain of the War that you'll never forget. Do you remember the dark months you held the sector at Mametz-- The nights you watched and wired and dug and piled sandbags on parapets? Do you remember the rats; and the stench Of corpses rotting in front of the front-line trench-- And dawn coming, dirty-white, and chill with a hopeless rain? Do you ever stop and ask, 'Is it all going to happen again?' Do you remember that hour of din before the attack-- And the anger, the blind compassion that seized and shook you then As you peered at the doomed and haggard faces of your men? Do you remember the stretcher-cases lurching back With dying eyes and lolling heads--those ashen-grey Masks of the lads who once were keen and kind and gay? Have you forgotten yet?... Look up, and swear by the green of the spring that you'll never forget. Siegfried Sassoon For the Fallen With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children, England mourns for her dead across the sea. Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit, Fallen in the cause of the free. Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres. There is music in the midst of desolation And a glory that shines upon our tears. They went with songs to the battle, they were young, Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow. They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted, They fell with their faces to the foe. 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. They mingle not with their laughing comrades again; They sit no more at familiar tables of home; They have no lot in our labour of the day-time; They sleep beyond England's foam. But where our desires are and our hopes profound, Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight, To the innermost heart of their own land they are known As the stars are known to the Night; As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust, Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain, As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness, To the end, to the end, they remain.

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