THE MOST BEAUTIFUL ROAD IN ALL THE WORLD
This month marks the centenary of the end of the First World War, so it’s a good time to mention the Western Front Way: a plan to create a long-distance walking trail following the line of the Western Front from the Swiss border in the south, through France and Belgium, and up to the Channel coast.
The idea originated way back in 1915. Three months before his death, 2nd Lt Alexander Douglas Gillespie wrote a letter from the Front to his old head teacher, dreaming of a better time to come.
“When peace comes, our government might combine with the French government to make one long avenue between the lines from the Vosges Mountains to the sea,” he wrote.
“I would make a fine, broad road, with paths for pilgrims. We might make the most beautiful road in all the world.”
Today the Western Front Way is a registered charity, working with French, Belgian and Canadian organisations to bring Gillespie’s dream to life. You can find out more about the plan, and donate to the campaign, at www. westernfrontway.com
And for some moving walks to mark the centenary on British soil, see p56.