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
Somme Battlefield Tours Ltd  Wimborne  Dorset BH21 1EJ  Tel: +44 (0) 7776 195773 or +44 (0) 1202 840520 info@battlefield-tours.com
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. 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
About Us
Just one of over 300 groups we’ve taken on a tour of the Somme and Ypres battlefields since 1996