Top positive review
Has stood the test of time
on 6 December 2015
Despite being more than 20 years old this book still holds its place as one of the best guides for this section of the Ypres salient.
It provides a detailed narrative of the fighting, involving mine warfare and flamethrowers, at Sanctuary Wood and the nearby Hooge Chateau.
These areas were stubbornly fought over during the end of 1914 and throughout 1915 and provide a couple of areas of particular interest.
Both Sanctuary Wood and Hooge remain marked by the ferociousness of the fighting which took place there.
Sanctuary Wood is one of the few places left on the British sector of the Western Front which still offers preserved trenches tunnels, and parapets. While at Hooge mine craters pock-mark the farmers' fields betraying their violent history.
Author Nigel Cave has picked over the unit war diaries and maps to create a guide which despite its age (it was published in 1993) has stood the test of time.
It includes narratives of the main actions and tour guides. These include the attack at Bellewaarde in June 1915, the Germans' first use of the flamethrower at Hooge and the British revenge attack two weeks later.
It also includes less well known actions like the raid by the 1/4 Duke of Wellington's (West Riding) Regiment in June 1918. This was a large-scale raid on German lines involving about 350 men. It aimed to capture prisoners for interrogation and was largely successful. Like the other actions, it is supported with maps, photographs and a tour guide.