The Silent Cities: The CWGC Story


5 days from £489pp

NEW About the tour: The Silent Cities: The CWGC Story


Tour Introduction

The Commonwealth War Graves Commission cares for the graves and memorials of 1.7 million men and women who died in the two World Wars. Founded in 1917, its dedicated staff now work at 23,000 different places across more than 150 countries and territories. This special tour, developed in association with the CWGC, provides a unique insight into the story of this remarkable organisation.

Tour Includes


  • 4 nights hotel with continental breakfast & 2 packed lunches
  • Specialist Battlefield Guide
  • Convenient local joining points
  • Travel by executive coach or upgrade to Silver Service or Luxuria
  • Battlefield visits as described
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(Deposits from £50pp)

Once you have booked your battlefield tour either online, or by telephone (01709 385 624), you have the flexibility of how you pay off the remainder of your balance. You can -

  1. Use our balance payment facility online to make and track your card payments. You can pay as much as you want up until your final due date or pay it all, the choice is yours.
  2. Send payments via online banking.
  3. Send payments via cheque.
  4. Call us and make a card payment, either a small amount or as lump sum until your final due date.

Our contact and online banking payment details will be on your confirmation invoice to remind you of your choices.

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Tour Itinerary

Aug 31

Local departure by coach, then to our hotel in Belgium or northern France, where we stay for four nights.

Sep 1 - Arras

Our first day begins at the new CWGC Experience at Beaurains, where we gain a unique behind-the-scenes insight into the work of the Commission and its skilled artisans. We find out about the painstaking recovery of remains and see the fascinating headstone production machinery at work.

In nearby Arras, we visit Faubourg d’Amiens Cemetery and the Arras Memorial for a special demonstration of renovation techniques.

This afternoon, we spend time on the battlefields east of Arras, looking at wartime cemeteries in some of the more isolated locations where the fighting took place in 1917, close to Heninel and Wancourt.

Included meals: Breakfast

CWGC Experience, Arras

CWGC Experience, Arras (5)

Key Visits

  • Arras Memorial & Faubourg d'Amiens
  • Cuckoo Passage Cemetery
  • CWGC Experience, Arras
  • CWGC Workshop

Sep 2 - The Somme

Today we continue with the history of the CWGC. When the Imperial War Graves Commission was founded in 1917, its approach to commemoration was controversial and challenging. At Forceville Communal Cemetery we see the formation of its ground-breaking approach laid out in stone. This was one of the experimental cemeteries where the architects tested their ideas.

At the cemeteries of Serre Road we learn how to ‘read’ a cemetery, and how they came to be created from the chaos of the battlefield to concentration and construction.

After lunch we visit the Thiepval Memorial, where we are given a bespoke tour by the CWGC interns, and observe a major renovation project which will conserve this iconic memorial for future generations.

We later look at Behind The Lines cemeteries, close to where Somme medical units operated at Heilly Station and Warloy-Baillon.

After dinner, we return to Thiepval for a special event where the CWGC will arrange an evening ceremony during which the Thiepval Memorial will be lit up. Please note this will mean a late return to your hotel.

Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Thiepval Memorial

Thiepval Memorial (5)

Key Visits

  • Thiepval Memorial
  • Serre Battlefield
  • Forceville Cemetery
  • Heilly Station Cemetery

Sep 3 - Ypres

On our final day we travel to Flanders. After the end of the First World War, Ypres became home to those who would begin the monumental task of rebuilding.

At nearby Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery, we set the scene by exploring the story of the city in the aftermath of war. We learn more about the first IWGC gardeners and the generations that followed, who used the CWGC’s remarkable archive to recreate the cemetery as it once looked. At Bedford House Cemetery, one of the Western Front’s most beautiful burial sites, we see a demonstration of the CWGC’s world-leading gardening and planting.

After lunch we travel to the iconic Menin Gate, where we learn about the history of the memorial and how it is cared for today. At Tyne Cot, the largest CWGC cemetery in the world, we meet with CWGC interns who carry the message of Remembrance to hundreds of visitors every year.

The day ends in Ypres where we attend the moving Last Post Ceremony.

Included meals: Breakfast, Lunch

CWGC Workshop, Ypres

CWGC Workshop, Ypres (6)

Key Visits

  • Menin Gate
  • Tyne Cot
  • Last Post Ceremony
  • Lijssenthoek Military Cemetery
  • CWGC Workshop, Ypres

Sep 4

Return home.

Included meals: Breakfast

Specialist Battlefield Guides

All of Leger’s battlefield tours are accompanied by specialist guides. Their individual in-depth knowledge of warfare will be informative, as well as enhance your overall experience, as they recreate a fascinating perception of the history and factual events of each battle. Discover the actual catalysts for war, the strategies employed and the final, inevitable outcomes, as well as experiencing the emotional human side of the front line.

Please note: On certain tours, you may get tour guides other that the ones listed below.

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Hotel

You will stay for four nights at a minimum 3-star hotel in Belgium or northern France.

Travel Options

All our coaches and transfer vehicles operate a 'no smoking on board policy'. The use of electronic cigarettes is strictly forbidden.
In the interest of fellow guests, do not take hot food or ice cream on board.
alcohol can only be taken on board our vehicles at the discretion of your driver.

When it comes to getting to the Battlefields, Leger Holidays make it easy, with a selection of travel options for you choose from.

Executive Coach

Executive Features

  • Air conditioning
  • Drinks machines
  • Onboard toilet
  • Reclining seats

Silver Service Coach

Silver Service, refreshments
Silver Service, lounge
Silver Service, entertainment

Silver Service Features

  • Sit back and relax in specially-designed, deluxe reclining seats, with leather headrests, footrests and more legroom than standard coaches.
  • Enjoy the perfect temperature onboard with climate control.
  • Relax and have a chat in the spacious rear lounge.
  • Servery on board offering a range of refreshments.
  • Porterage* at most hotels, so you really don’t have to lift a finger.
  • Time flies with our onboard entertainment system.
  • With free personal headphones you can tune into the music channel, listen to the radio or watch DVDs.
  • Onboard toilet

Silver Service Seating Plan

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Luxuria Coach

Luxuria - Charging sockets
Luxuria - TV
Luxruia - Seating

Luxuria Features

  • Deluxe armchair-style seats with leather exterior, central arm rests with cup holders and retractable calf rests give you a more comfortable journey.
  • Every seat has its own, fully interactive, touch screen T.V. offering a wide choice of entertainment so you can control what you want to watch and when.
  • There’s also a selection of double and single seats, including four seats face-to-face with tables. And with a total of 7 single seats available, these are ideal for passengers travelling independently.
  • Plug sockets and USB points at each seat mean you can keep your devices fully charged throughout your journey.
  • Onboard toilet.

Luxuria Seating Plan

Luxuria Seating Plan

Travel Extras

With an overnight stay or the option to meet us at the interchange, our travel extras allow you to create a travel experience to suit your needs...

Stay overnight near Dover

Why not go the night before your tour for a relaxing start?

You can park for FREE for up to seven days at the Holiday Inn Ashford North and enjoy an overnight stay with English breakfast from just £38 per person (Based on 2 sharing a twin/double room on a B&B basis, subject to availability. Single supplements and terms and conditions apply.) We’ll then collect you from the hotel on the day of departure and return you there at the end of your holiday.

To book this package, please call the hotel on 01233 713333, quoting ‘Leger Holidays’ and your booking reference. If your holiday is longer than seven days you can pay for additional days’ parking. Ask one of our friendly reservations team for more details when you book your holiday

Join coach at Interchange

Join your tour coach at the interchange.

On most tours if you’d prefer to join your tour coach at Stop 24 services, you can park your car in the car park which is accredited by the Park Mark safer parking scheme and is monitored 24 hours a day by CCTV. Payment for the parking is made on arrival using the self-service machines.

Excludes tours to Ireland and the U.K. and tours travelling via Brittany Ferries.

Book Now

OR

Call our friendly advisors on: 01709 385 624