Update on new Somme memorial in France

Posted : 13th May 2021 at 15:21:07

In December 2019 a small delegation from Linfield Football Club visited the village of Bertrancourt in the Somme region of Northern France. The delegation included Club Chairman Roy McGivern, former Director Ronnie Morrison, Academy Coach Johnny Jamison and local historian and Somme tour guide Phil Hamilton.

The group received a very warm welcome from local dignitaries in Bertrancourt who offered their full support for our outline plans to erect a Memorial in the area as a tribute to the young Linfield players who served in the First World War. Many of these young players made the ultimate sacrifice and never returned home. Some are buried in the numerous Commonwealth War Cemeteries in Northern France and Belgium and others are remembered on the many War Memorials in the region including the Menin Gate in Ypres, Belgium.

The people of Bertrancourt identified a suitable site for the planned Memorial in the centre of their village. The Linfield group returned to Belfast and immediately made plans to turn their vision into a reality.

Over 125 Linfield supporters generously pledged £100 each to fund the project and work commenced on the Memorial in early 2020. However, whilst the project was delayed by the global pandemic which prevented travel to the region, local builders were engaged to undertake the work and this has progressed well. The outline structure is now in place and plans are being made to finalise the Memorial once travel to the region is permitted.

If travel restrictions are eased in the coming months, we hope to be in a position to complete the Memorial and arrange an unveiling ceremony in Autumn 2021. This will be a proud moment for all of those involved in the project and it is planned that a large delegation will travel from Northern Ireland to Northern France to mark the occasion.

Further details will be published on this website once they are available and we look forward to seeing this project come to fruition later this year

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