After Johan De Bock (translated by us): 'Almost everyone knows the amusement park Bellewaerde.
But who remembers this was one of the battle fields during the first World War? Close to the entrance, there is a memorial - well hidden between the flags... On the other side of the Meense road, you do see the 'Hooge Crater Cemetery' (almost 6000 soldiers were burried here). There is also a 'Hooge Crater' museum. And in the garden of a hotel, you see an invitation to visit 'the famous explosion - excavated trenches - bunkers'...
Okay, commerce needs it's part too... And after the war, we could not turn the entire area into a museum (although the English had plans in that direction).
Anyway... give the poor soldiers a thankful thought while enjoying yourself in the attractions?'
Gerry Coe: 'It is a shame on Flanders this commercial Bellewaerde on the place where English boys died for your freedom'
Martin Clift: 'The area of Bellewaarde depicts a peacfull, quiet place where one can hear the song of the birds and the swish of the grass as the wind blows across the farmed land.
96 years ago on 16th June 1915 this land looked very different. The trees in Railway Wood were like broken fingers poiting to the heavens. The soil mixed with blood and flesh which gave the stink of death only to be blown through another uniform by shell after shell. The deafening noise of guns sending misiles to kill and the cackling of small arms laughing and coughing to bring more death. German or British, death cares not.
Let us remember those brave men of Bellewaarde in the quiet Summer breeze.