Irish Peace Park

Our World War 1 expedition finished at the Irish Peace Park. Another place I hadn’t planned on visiting but with our Irish links and the proximity to Ypres decided we must.

08.06.81 - Ireland Peace Park

A bit tricky to find, right in the middle of the Belgian countryside but when the replica Irish tower loomed on the horizon we were sorted. The memorial is relatively modern, only unveiled on Remembrance Day 1998. The President of Ireland, Queen Elizabeth II and King Albert II of Belgium attended this ceremony.

08.06.82 - Ireland Peace Park

Close to the site of the Messines Ridge the location was chosen because that famous battle was one of the few where Irishmen, regardless of religion fought side by side against a common enemy. A beautiful and peaceful spot, it is dominated by that Irish round tower. 110 feet tall it is built from stone which came from a former British army barracks in Tipperary and a workhouse in Co Westmeath. The design means the sun only lights the inside on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.

08.06.87 - Ireland Peace Park

There are stone tablets along the walkway with quotations from Irish servicemen. Three pillars record the numbers killed and wounded. More of those sobering statistics.

08.06.83 - Ireland Peace Park

08.06.84 - Ireland Peace Park

An inscription on the tower in Gaelic and English dedicates this place to all Irish soldiers of all political persuasions who fought and died in World War 1. A fitting tribute, we found it a reflective and moving place and that idea of peace and reconciliation in Ireland still strikes an important chord.

08.06.88 - Ireland Peace Park

20 thoughts on “Irish Peace Park

  1. It’s been so interesting reading about your impromptu finds. That’s nuts that the light only shines on the 11 hour, 11 day etc. I can only imagine how emotionally exhausted you guys were!

  2. That’s amazing that the tower was designed to only be lit on the inside by the sun on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. There must have been some intense planning involved!

    • I know, incredible how they can plan such a thing and then make sure it happens!! I just wish we’d been there at that precise time to see the sun shine in – that would have been a wow moment.

  3. What a beautiful memorial Joy – such a moving place. How incredible that the inside only lights up on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month! I also love the sense of reconciliation behind the memorial and the fact that soldiers of different faiths were able to put their religious differences aside. It gives hope for the future – this spirit is needed so much in various parts of the world at present! Thanks for another lovely post and wishing you a great weekend 🙂

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