About Us I    first    visited    the    Somme    and    Ypres    battlefields    back    in    1966    when    I    was    just eighteen.   I   was   returning   from   a   holiday   in   France,   and   by   chance   found   myself   to be driving through somewhere called Picardy and the Somme. I   remember   stopping   to   see   a   truly   massive   memorial   which   dominated   the   skyline   - the   Thiepval   Memorial   to   the   Missing   on   the   Somme   battlefield.   I   was   taken   aback that   the   72,000*   plus   names   on   the   memorial   were   not   all   those   British   soldiers killed   in   the   battle   (as   shocking   as   that   would   have   been...)   but   ‘just’   those   soldiers whose   bodies   were   either   never   found,   or   whose   bodies   were   found   but   could   not be   identified   (the   latter   being   those   servicemen   whose   headstone   today   reads   ‘A soldier    of    the    Great    War    known    unto    God’).    I    found    this    figure    difficult    to comprehend,    especially    as    this    figure    got    worse    the    more    I    learnt    about    what happened   here.   I   could   not   help   thinking   that   I   was   the   same   age   (at   that   time)   as   so many of those names who were staring at me from the memorial walls. As   my   then   knowledge   of   the   Great   War   was   fairly   sketchy   I   found   difficulty,   like   so many   casual   visitors   to   the   battlefield   today,   in   transforming   the   landscape   in   my minds   eye   back   to   how   it   must   have   looked   in   1916.   I   wanted   to   know   exactly   where the   front   line   trenches   were,   and   where   exactly   the   many   individual   actions   took place.   More   than   anything   I   felt   a   need   to   understand   what   it   must   have   been   like for those who were there. What was the reality of trench warfare? Since   that   first   visit   I   have   pursued   a   career   in   the   police   service   (Superintendent, Dorset   Police)   as   well   as   raising   a   family.   Throughout   this   time   my   interest   in   the First    World    War,    and    the    Somme,    Ypres    and    Verdun    Battles    in    particular,    has continued.    Over    the    past    forty    odd    years    I    have    returned    to    the    battlefields countless   times.   I   have   also   undertaken   numerous   private   conducted   tours   to   both the    Somme,    Ypres    and    Verdun    battlefields    whilst    serving    as    a    police    officer,    a background   which   served   me   well   when   I   decided   to   establish   my   company   after   I retired in 1996. I    took    the    plunge    and    formed    Somme    Battlefield    Tours    Ltd,    more    as    a    way    of sharing   my   interest   with   others   as   opposed   to   running   the   venture   as   a   hard-nosed commercial   business.   For   this   reason   I   personally   organised   and   accompanied   every single   one   of   the   many,   many   conducted   tours   I   have   undertaken   since   starting   our small   company   back   in   1996   (now   also   with   my   wife   Annette   who   switched   career and    joined    me    in    2004).    Annette    and    I    have,    however,    always    avoided    the temptation   to   expand   what   we   do   beyond   the   reach   and   scope   of   our   personal involvement.    This    is    important    to    us    as    we    want    to    provide    a    quality    personal service,   which   can   not   be   found   with   so   many   larger   companies   today.   This   way   you deal with us personally and not an employee! In   2009   we   decided   to   focus   all   our   energies   to   providing   self-drive   tours   to   the Somme   and   Ypres   battlefields,   based   on   our   many   years   experience   of   taking   small groups.   Over   the   years   we   had   seen   so   many   people   trying   to   find   their   war   around the   battlefields,   then   one   day   we   though   'why   not   commit   our   tried   and   tested conducted   tours   to   paper'      -   and   it   worked.      It   worked   very   well   indeed   (as   you   may have   seen   from   the   letters   we   have   received).      Our   much-praised   self-drive   tours   are now   extremely   popular   for   the   reasons   we've   outlined   on   the   appropriate   page   of our website. My   company   Somme   Battlefield   Tours   Ltd,   is   now   one   of   only   a   very,   very,   few dedicated   WW1   battlefield   tour   companies   who   have   been   in   existence   for   over   20 years.   Supported   by   my   wife   Annette,   I   am   proud   to   have   received   many   national accolades   and   literally   hundreds      and   hundreds   of   glowing   testimonials    dating   back to 1996 (too many to show here). Organising   our   tours   is   has   always   been   a   labour   of   love   with   each   conducted   or self-drive    tour    taking    on    a    character    of    its    own.    Without    exception,    everyone Annette   and   I   have   met   over   many   years   of   professional   guiding   has   been   good company   and   all   have   found   the   visiting   the   Somme,   Ypres   battlefields   a   most moving, interesting and rewarding experience. Well I think that’s far too much waffle about me. Once again, thank you very much for visiting our web site. Any comments or suggestions would be most welcome.  James & Annette Power
Somme Battlefield Tours Ltd  Wimborne  Dorset BH21 1EJ  Tel: +44 (0) 7776 195773 or +44 (0) 1202 840520 info@battlefield-tours.com
Just one of over 300 groups we’ve taken on a tour of the Somme and Ypres battlefields since 1996
I   first   visited   the   Somme   and   Ypres   battlefields   back in   1966   when   I   was   just   eighteen.   I   was   returning from   a   holiday   in   France,   and   by   chance   found   myself to   be   driving   through   somewhere   called   Picardy   and the Somme. I   remember   stopping   to   see   a   truly   massive   memorial which   dominated   the   skyline   -   the   Thiepval   Memorial to   the   Missing   on   the   Somme   battlefield   (see   inset left).   I   was   taken   aback   that   the   72,000*   plus   names on   the   memorial   were   not   all   those   British   soldiers killed   in   the   battle   (as   shocking   as   that   would   have been...)   but   ‘just’   those   soldiers   whose   bodies   were either   never   found,   or   whose   bodies   were   found   but could    not    be    identified    (the    latter    being    those servicemen   whose   headstone   today   reads   ‘A   soldier   of the   Great   War   known   unto   God’).   I   found   this   figure difficult   to   comprehend,   especially   as   this   figure   got worse   the   more   I   learnt   about   what   happened   here.   I could   not   help   thinking   that   I   was   the   same   age   (at that   time)   as   so   many   of   those   names   who   were staring at me from the memorial walls. Since   that   first   visit   I   have   pursued   a   career   in   the police   service   (Superintendent,   Dorset   Police)   as   well as   raising   a   family.   Throughout   this   time   my   interest in   the   First   World   War,   and   the   Somme,   Ypres   and Verdun Battles in particular, has continued. After   retiring   from   the   Police   Service   at   just   49   I   took the   plunge   and   formed   Somme   Battlefield   Tours   Ltd, more   as   a   way   of   sharing   my   interest   with   others   as opposed    to    running    the    venture    as    a    hard-nosed commercial    business.    For    this    reason    I    personally organised   and   accompanied   every   single   one   of   the many,   many   conducted   tours   I   have   undertaken   since starting   our   small   company   back   in   1996   (now   also with   my   wife   Annette   who   switched   career   and   joined me   in   2004).   Annette   and   I   have,   however,   always avoided    the    temptation    to    expand    what    we    do beyond     the     reach     and     scope     of     our     personal involvement.   This   is   important   to   us   as   we   want   to provide   a   quality   personal   service,   which   can   not   be found with so many larger companies today. In    2009    we    decided    to    focus    all    our    energies    to providing   self-drive   tours   to   the   Somme   and   Ypres battlefields,   based   on   our   many   years   experience   of taking   small   groups.   Over   the   years   we   had   seen   so many    people    trying    to    find    their    war    around    the battlefields,   then   one   day   we   though   'why   not   commit our   tried   and   tested   conducted   tours   to   paper'      -   and it   worked.      It   worked   very   well   indeed   (as   you   may have   seen   from   the   letters   we   have   received).      Our much-praised    self-drive    tours    are    now    extremely popular    for    the    reasons    we've    outlined    on    the appropriate page of our website. My   company   Somme   Battlefield   Tours   Ltd,   is   now   one of   only   a   very,   very,   few   dedicated   WW1   battlefield tour   companies   who   have   been   in   existence   for   over 20   years.   Supported   by   my   wife   Annette,   I   am   proud to   have   received   many   national   accolades   and   literally hundreds        and    hundreds    of    glowing    testimonials   dating back to 1996 (too many to show here). Organising   our   tours   is   has   always   been   a   labour   of love   with   each   conducted   or   self-drive   tour   taking   on a   character   of   its   own.   Without   exception,   everyone Annette    and    I    have    met    over    many    years    of professional   guiding   has   been   good   company   and   all have   found   the   visiting   the   Somme,   Ypres   battlefields a most moving, interesting and rewarding experience. Well I think that’s far too much waffle about me. Once again, thank you very much for visiting our web site. Any comments or suggestions would be most welcome. James & Annette  James & Annette Power
About Us
Above: Just one of over 300 groups we’ve taken on a tour of the Somme and Ypres battlefields since 1996
Somme Battlefield Tours Ltd  Wimborne  Dorset BH21 1EJ  +44 (0) 7776 195773 or +44 (0) 1202 840520 info@battlefield-tours.com