Salonika Battlefield Tour : 19-25 September 2017

SCS tour photo - a participant surveys one of the battlefields.The SCS Tour Team is pleased to announce details of the Society’s September 2017 battlefield tour. This will include visits to key sites associated with British Salonika Force operations: The ‘Birdcage’ defence line, Doiran, Kosturino, the Struma Valley, as well as attendance at official ceremonies of commemoration in Greece.

Itinerary

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Fly Gatwick to Thessaloniki: leave 05:55am, arrive 11:10am

Visit to the ‘Birdcage Line’ to see the remains of British and French defensive positions constructed between December 1915 and April 1916 in case of a Bulgarian advance on Salonika. We will also take in the CWGC’s Struma cemetery and view the Struma Valley from British artillery positions overlooking the valley.

Overnight hotel accommodation near Serres, Greece – Hotel Siris.

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

A day in the Struma Valley covering ground over which the British XVI Corps fought a number of actions between 1916 and 1918. These include the actions at Karajakois and Yenikoi (1916), Tumbitza Farm (1916), Homondos (1917) and Prosenik (1918). We will also visit trenches, caves and tunnels that formed a Bulgarian forward position near Paleokastro in the north of the Struma Valley. The group will then cross the border from Greece into the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM).

Overnight in Doiran, FYROM – Hotel Romantique.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

A day walking the Doiran battlefield to visit Grand Couronné, with the Devil’s Eye bunker, Bulgarian second line positions at The Hilt and Hill 340 and Petit Couronné, scene of fierce fighting during the two Battles of Doiran in 1917 and 1918.

Overnight in Doiran, FYROM – Hotel Romantique.

Friday, 22 September 2017

A day walking the 1915 Kosturino battlefield where the 10th (Irish) Division became the first element of the British Salonika Force to fight the Bulgarians. Afterward we will pay our respects at the 10th (Irish) Division memorial near Rabrovo.

Overnight in Doiran, FYROM – Hotel Romantique.

Saturday, 23 September 2017

The group will return to Greece to attend an official ceremony of commemoration at the Lembet Road Allied Military Cemetery in Thessaloniki. In the afternoon, members of the group will be free to explore the city of Thessaloniki.

Overnight hotel accommodation in Thessaloniki.

Sunday, 24 September 2017

SCS tour photo - the SCS flag at the annual commemorations in northern Greece.The group will attend an official ceremony of commemoration at the Five Nations Memorial near Polykastro (formerly Karasouli) and in the afternoon a ceremony at the Doiran Memorial, which offers members of the group a chance to visit the CWGC Doiran Cemetery. If time allows, on the return from the ceremonies the group will visit the CWGC Sarigol cemetery, an infrequent stopping point on SCS tours.

Overnight hotel accommodation in Thessaloniki.

Monday 25 September 2017

Fly from Thessaloniki, Greece 11:50am

Costs

  • Estimated cost of the tour: £700 to £900 (dependent on numbers travelling)
  • This covers accommodation,  food, in-country transport and guides.
  • A £200 deposit is payable to reserve a place;  this is refundable should the tour not go ahead.
  • As usual with SCS tours, individuals are responsible for organising their own flights.

To reserve a place

To find out more or reserve a place on this tour, please contact Alan Wakefield by email on chair@salonikacampaignsociety.org.uk.

BOOK NOW AS THERE ARE ONLY A FEW PLACES LEFT!

Don’t forget to pack …

  • good walking or hiking boots/shoes, which are essential (trainers will NOT be suitable for the terrain);
  • waterproofs, for surprise showers;
  • spare socks for your day pack, for those ‘stuck in the mud’ moments;
  • a torch for exploring bat-filled bunkers!
  • insect repellent, as you will be delving into ‘the bush’
  • sunscreen as you will be out in the sun
  • a walking aid, as you trek through  the highs and lows of an uneven topography, a walking aid can ease the burden on the knees.

SCS tour photo - participants admiring the view from a high rock

First Battle of Doiran : Centenary Tour

We wish the members of the ‘First Battle of Doiran Centenary Tour’ bon voyage as they make their way to Thessaloniki today. This is an exciting tour as the group – led by SCS Chairman, Alan Wakefield – will have the opportunity to walk the battlefield exactly one hundred years after the opening days of the first Battle of Doiran.

Continue reading “First Battle of Doiran : Centenary Tour”

The death of Lady Harley

Lady Harley, the sister of Sir John French, was killed in Bitola, Serbia, on 17 March 1917. The New Mosquito issue 17 (April 2008) contained an article – Lady Harley and her Gravestone in Two Languages – by Philp Barnes. This is an extract from the article giving the circumstances of Lady Harley’s death and subsequent burial. Continue reading “The death of Lady Harley”

Remembering Edward George Thomas who died in Salonika on 4th March 1917

6/9115 Private Edward George Thomas of 3rd Battalion, Middlesex Regiment was killed on 4th March 1917 and is buried in the CWGC section of the Salonika (Lembet Road) Military Cemetery. He was just 19 and had joined the Battalion in France in August 1915. Continue reading “Remembering Edward George Thomas who died in Salonika on 4th March 1917”

‘Battle Honours’ tour to Salonika – September 2017

The well known battlefield tour company, Battle Honours is running a tour to Salonika in September 2017. The Salonika Walking Tour is from 24 to 29 September and is to be run with the assistance of SCS Chairman and joint-author of Under the Devil’s Eye, Alan Wakefield. You will find more details of the tour at the Battle Honours website. Continue reading “‘Battle Honours’ tour to Salonika – September 2017”

SCS Doiran Tour, April 2017 : just a few places left!

Continuing its programme of themed Centenary battlefield tours, the Salonika Campaign Society offers a chance to walk and study the ground fought over during the First Battle of Doiran (or Dojran) in 1917. There are just a few places remaining on this unique tour. Find out more in the colourful April 2017 Battlefield Tour Newsletter and in our earlier post.

One hundred years on : two Salonika graves

On a visit to the Allied Cemetery in Thessaloniki in April 2016, I was struck by two graves from 1916, both non-battle casualties. I offer them here for Armistice Day. Continue reading “One hundred years on : two Salonika graves”

SCS Battlefield Tour April 2017 : DOJRAN 100

Sunday 23 to Saturday 29 April 2017

Photograph: SCS tour group at the 'Devil's Eye' on Grand Couronné, a key feature of the Doiran battlefield. Photograph taken by SCS Chairman, Alan Wakefield, in September 2013.
SCS tour group at the ‘Devil’s Eye’ on Grand Couronné, a key feature of the Doiran battlefied. Photograph taken by SCS Chairman, Alan Wakefield, in September 2013.

Continuing its programme of themed First World War Centenary battlefield tours, the Salonika Campaign Society offers a chance to walk and study the ground fought over during the First Battle of Doiran (or Dojran) in 1917. Continue reading “SCS Battlefield Tour April 2017 : DOJRAN 100”