UPDATE 2015 –  a new memorial has been dedicated at Pointe de Grave and i came across another one at St Vivien. See this post at
I am presently in France, specifically the Medoc peninsular of Aquitaine. Here’s just a couple of pictures I took on a grey and rainy day in Le Verdon. Le Verdon is at the very tip of the peninsular where the river Garonne enters the sea.
This is where I took shelter for 45 minutes during a heavy shower. A WW2 Geman garage! Observe hired bicycle.
A freighter entering the Garonne passing the fishermen braving the elements on one of the old quays.
This memorial to British World War Two heroes is tucked away in a side street near the ferry at Pointe de Grave.
It commemorates the capture of two of the members of ‘Operation Frankton’ – the commando operation dramatised in the film ‘Cockleshell Heroes’. You can read all about it elsewhere but briefly the mission, in December 1942, called for six two-man canoe teams to be dropped by submarine off Le Verdon, from where they would paddle the 60 miles down the Gironde to the docks in Bordeaux and there blow up as possible of the enemy shipping. One canoe didn’t even make it out of the sub, two crews were lost at sea and only two actually made it all the way. Much damage was done.
The inscription on the monument reads, in French and English,
In Memoriam
Sergeant Samuel Wallace
Marine Robert Ewart
Captured near here, 50 metres away towards the sea, at dawn on 8th December 1942 by the crew of a German anti-aircraft battery.  Shot at the Chateau Magnol, Blanquefort, on 11th December 1942.
I hope to get some more cheerful pictures at the Tour de France time trial tomorrow in Pauillac.

In France

Tagged: , , on July 23, 2010 by cubsur51

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