Advice for travel to Fromelles
In April 2014, 20 unidentified Australians soldiers were identified amongst the 250 soldiers buried at the Fromelles (Pheasant Wood) Military Cemetery. The Australian Army and the Mayor of Fromelles will host the final headstone dedication ceremony to dedicate new headstones that will be installed bearing the identified soldiers names. The ceremony will take place on Saturday 19 July 2014 at around 11.00 am.
The ceremony is open to the public and is a dignified and special event.
Family members who wish to attend a headstone dedication ceremony in 2014 are asked to advise the Unrecovered War Casualties – Army Hotline on 1800 019 090 or email army.uwc [at] defence.gov.au prior to making their travel plans. The Australian Army is unable to provide any funding for those wishing to attend. The ceremonies last about one hour and there is limited seating provided for family members.
The closest major town to Fromelles is Lille and the Australian Army will provide transport (Touring Coach) for family members of those identified Australian Soldiers, from Lille railway station (Gare de Lille Europe) to Fromelles and return to Lille. Family members who intend to avail themselves of this transport are asked to advise the Unrecovered War Casualties – Army Hotline on 1800 019 090 or email army.uwc [at] defence.gov.au no later than 30 Jun 2014. Passengers will be requested to be at the railway station no later than 10.00 am.
The ceremonies will follow separate annual commemorative activities conducted by the Fromelles community at the nearby VC Corner Military Cemetery and the Cobbers Memorial.
The following information may assist anyone planning on travelling to Fromelles.
Where is Fromelles?
Fromelles is in northern France and is located between the cities of Lille and Arras. The closest accommodation is at Lille which is about 20-30 minutes drive from Fromelles. Lille is the largest city in northern France. Lille is close to the border with Belgium and a stop on the Eurostar train service to and from London.
The weather during summer in northern France can be changeable. Visitors may encounter warm days, sunny skies and temperatures ranging from mid-20s to the low-30s. Equally, the weather might change and produce cooler days with showers or rain.
Accommodation in Lille
Lille is the major city in northern France and there are many hotels in and around the city catering to most budgets.
- Flights from Australia arrive at Charles De Gaulle Airport near Paris or London Heathrow Airport near London.
- Lille is about a two and a half hour drive from Paris via Autoroute A1 (Paris – Arras – Lille).
- Hire cars are available at Charles De Gaulle Airport and Paris.
- Lille is about a three hour drive from Calais via Autoroute A25 (Calais – Dunkirk – Lille).
- Trains run from Paris to Lille.
- The Eurostar rail service runs between London and Lille.