Haig Ceremony1

Unveiling of Refurbished Haig Statue in France

image credits: Jamie Wilson, HAC

June 2022 Montreuil-sur-mer: A splendid, long-awaited ceremony took place on 18 June in the pretty Normandy market town of Montreuil-Sur-Mer, to mark the unveiling of the newly refurbished statue of Field Marshal Earl Haig. The ceremony included representatives of Haig’s former regiments, as well as French cavalry, all in full ceremonial

dress. Parading in the main square was no small feat, largely because temperatures reached 40 degrees.  The well-attended event was just part of a weekend of parades, services and celebrations organised to remember FM Haig and the wider significance of the Entente Cordiale between Britain and France. Montreuil had, after all, been the base for British GHQ from 1916 to the end of the Great War and the town still boasts strong connections between the two countries. Those attending were also treated to a number of fascinating exhibitions about aspects of the conflict.

The commemoration, which also featured the stirring sounds of FM Earl Haig’s Own Pipes and Drums from Belgium, culminated in a wreath-laying service at Etaples Military Cemetery and a visit to the nearby Chartreuse de Neuville. Jonathan was honoured to take part, but the whole event was superbly organised by Lord Astor and the members of the Haig Restoration Fund, including John Acton, Kathy Stephenson and Elspeth Johnstone. It was a memorable weekend.

See www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMwn4YjdqyU for a French video of the unveiling.

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