Loos en Gohelle
Loos Memorial and Dud Corner cemetery. Source: Lens-Liévin Tourist and Heritage Information Office
Invaded in October 1914, Loos-en-Gohelle was not liberated until August 1917 for which it paid the price of thousands of lives.
The town of Loos-en-Gohelle suffered huge losses during the war of 1914-18. Invaded on 10 October 1914, it was not liberated until August 1917 at the cost of thousands of lives. French, English, Scottish, Welsh and Canadian men all perished on the town’s soil, hence the number of memorials and groups that continue to preserve a trace of its history today.
The association “Sur les Traces de la Grande Guerre” (In the footsteps of the Great War), whose role is to preserve, safeguard and share this legacy, invites people to visit the Musée Alexandre Villedieu where all the objects on display come from the Loos battlefields. There were three major battles in Loos-en-Gohelle, within the triangle of hills of Artois (Vimy and Lorette) and the Douai plain.
The first battle took place on 9 May 1915. A diversion to the Battle of Lorette Hill, it was a deadly massacre for both French regiments.
The second battle began on 25 September 1915, and is more commonly known amongst the British as the Battle of Loos. This battle claimed many victims (among the British, 15,800 lives and 34,580 men injured; among the Germans, 20,000 killed or wounded). This battle is very dear to the British many of whom come to meditate at the graves in three British cemeteries in Loos-en-Gohelle. This battle liberated two-thirds of Loos as far as Hill 70 which remained under German control for a further two years.
The third battle took place on 15 August 1917. After the liberation of Hill 145 in Vimy, the Canadian soldiers arrived in Loos in mid-July to seize the remaining part of German-occupied Loos. Until 15 August 1917, 12,000 Canadians moved around in a network of underground tunnels planning the liberation of Hill 70.
The Loos footpaths (Sépultures path and Lone Tree path) are public ways where Great War fanatics and interested visitors can learn all about the historic past of Loos through the former World War I battlefields.
Musée 14/18 Alexandre Villedieu
Association "Sur les Traces de la Grande Foyer Omer Caron"
First floor, Place de la République 62750 Loos en Gohelle
Tel: +33 (0)3 21 70 59 75 or +33 (0)3 21 28 99 82
Mairie de Loos en Gohelle (town hall)
Place de la République 62750 Loos en Gohelle
Tel: +33 (0)3 21 69 88 77
Fax: +33 (0)3 21 69 88 79
Opening times: 9-11 am and 2-5 pm
N.B. Reservation only for afternoon visits.
Place de la République 62750
Loos en Gohelle
Tél. 03 21 69 88 77 Fax : 03 21 69 88 79 Musée 14/18 Alexandre Villedieu Association Sur les Traces de la Grande Foyer Omer Caron -1er étagePlace de la République 62750 Loos en GohelleTél. 03 21 70 59 75 ou 03 21 28 99 82E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
Opening times: 9-11 am and 2-5 pm (reservation only for afternoon visits)