This evening the Mayor of Chauny held a reception in the town hall. The venue was very beautiful. There were lots of speeches from visiting dignitaries all in The French language. The photo shows the Mayor speaking. Mr Coutts spoke on our behalf (in Maori, French and English, and Mr Gallop translated the English part of the speech. The students supported Mr Coutts' speech by singing a song in Maori after his speech.
This afternoon we went on a literary tour of the Somme battlefield. We visited the village of Frise, saw where German and French soldiers had trenches and discovered stories about the war written by the author Blaise Cendrars.
Students from Chauny, France and students from Auckland, New Zealand in a group photo at Vauclair Abby.
This Abby was a Cistercian abbey founded in 1134 by Saint Bernard of Clairvaux. It managed to survive until the French Revolution in 1789, when it was finally demolished and sold as "national property". Its geographical location very near to the Chemin des Dames led to what was left of its buildings being almost totally destroyed in 1917 by direct artillery bombardment during the First World...
French students from Lycee Professionnel Jean Mace in Chauny, France and New Zealand students from Baradene College of the Sacred Heart in Auckland at the WW1 exhibition in the Imperial War Museum in London. The students looked at the exhibition together.
Students from Lycee Professionnel Jean Mace in Chauny and Baradene College of the Sacred Heart in Auckland, standing in front of the New Zealand War Memorial at Hyde Park Corner in London. A little wet from the rain but enjoying making friends on their first day together.
Today all of the students got to see the book. Everyone was excited to see the section they had written and to find thier name as an author at the back of the book. Our task today for the project was to post two copied to the National Library of New Zealand. This is called the "Legal Deposit" and is required under law in New Zealand when you get an ISBN number for the book. It means that two copies will be forever kept in the Bational Library for researchers to reference.
Another preview of our book. This time the pages show photos of Archibald Baxter and Mark Briggs (two conscientious objectors sent to the Western Front) and a great photo we sourced from Puke Ariki Museum of a NZ soldier on the duckboard at the front line. Briggs was dragged over this, the nails on it digging into his flesh and creating huge wounds. Baxter was marched to the front line in order to try to "break his will" to resist military service. In the end he got left there, and wandered...
The photo shows pages from our book that we are publishing as part of our Shared Histories Project. The book will be launched when we are in Chauny, France. The photo shows a section of the book written by the French students in Chauny who researched the execution of a group of soldiers in Vingré. These are known as the Martyrs of Vingré [Martyrs de Vingré]. The book is bilingual in French and English.
Les Martyrs de Vingré sont six poilus, le caporal Paul Henry Floch et les soldats Jean...