I have always wanted to visit the grave of the young Willie McBride from the very first time I heard the ballad "No Mans Land, The Green Fields of France" written by Eric Bogle and sung by Finbar Furey. As a teacher I am always amazed at how this ballad in particular can inspire young people to engage with History through the power of the lyric. As a class project we used the Common Wealth War Graves Commission Data Base to locate the grave of this young soldier, and we found not just the one Willie McBride but ten of an Irish Regiment North and South. Carl helped me find the grave of Private W.McBride buried in Authuille, British Military Cemetery near Albert in Northern France. Carl recommended a B&B that would enable us to attend the Mennin Gate ceremony which I was very moved by. The following morning after a delicious breakfast Carl collected my friend and I and we set off for Authuille. En route we collected a couple from Perth, Australia and we visited the battlefields of Flanders and every site we had requested, and that meant so much to all of us. Carl even brought us to see the Cathedral at Amiens which delighted our friends from Perth.We did not think it possible to include this gem but he did it as it would be our only chance to see it and what a joy it was. I left a plaque on the grave of our young Willie McBride from myself and my pupils and when I did get to sing his song at his grave side I sang it for them all. Carl is a professional tour guide who delivers a service of excellence that I have not seen very often. His knowledge of History from every perspective was inspiring, his answer to every request was "yes, I can", he even dropped us back to the train station at Lille, which was out of his way, because he knew that train went directly from there back to Brugge. If I were lucky enough to visit Belgium and the battle fields of Northern France once more I would without hesitation contact Carl Ooghe to be my guide, I learned so much. 15th August 2013.
Finglas, Dublin, Ireland
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.