Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial

The Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial honours all Newfoundlanders who served during the First World War and those lost with no known grave. It is located at the site of the Battle of Beaumont-Hamel.

7 June 1925

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First World War

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Visitor Information

Rue de l'Église, D73, 80300 Auchonvillers, France

The visitor centre remains closed.

Visitors may access the monuments and the trails during normal operating hours.

For now, there are still no guided tours at these sites. In the meantime, we invite you to download self-guided tour maps.

Parking at the site is available from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

 

Trail of the Caribou

Located in northern France, the Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial can be found nine kilometres north of the town of Albert within the département of the Somme. The Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial encompasses 30 hectares and is the largest of five Newfoundland memorial sites in France and Belgium that together form the Trail of the Caribou.

Caribou Monument at Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial.

Standing watch

Caribou Monument as seen from above.

At the heart of the memorial stands a great bronze caribou (the emblem of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment). Its defiant gaze forever fixed towards its former foe, the caribou stands watch over rolling fields that still lay claim to many men with no known final resting place.

A sculptor’s inspiration

Captain Basil Gotto with his Caribou Sculpture, ca. 1921.

Sculptor Basil Gotto's bronze caribou design is believed to have been inspired in part by the iconic Newfoundland photograph, "The Monarch of the Topsails". The noble bronze caribou is the emblem of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment. The statue is estimated to weigh approximately 770 kilograms (1,700 pounds).

Touches from home

The Caribou Memorial today.

Landscape architect Rudolph H.K. Cochius incorporated touches from home throughout his design. The Caribou Monument sits atop a mound surrounded by rock and shrubs native to Newfoundland. More than 5,000 trees native to Newfoundland (including spruce, dogberry and juniper) were also planted along the boundaries of the site before its opening in 1925.

Tribute to the fallen

Field-Marshal Earl Douglas Haig, Commander of the British Expeditionary Force during the Battle of the Somme, officially unveiled the Memorial on June 7, 1925.

Opening of the Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial, France, June 7, 1925.

821 names are inscribed on three bronze tablets at the base of the Caribou Monument in memory of those who died during the First World War and had no known grave. The list includes 591 members of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment, 114 sailors in the Newfoundland Royal Naval Reserve and 115 Merchant Mariners.

Cemeteries and the fallen

Over 400 First World War casualties rest in Y-Ravine Cemetery.

Three Commonwealth War Graves Commission cemeteries are located at the Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial: Hawthorn Ridge Cemetery No. 2, Hunters Cemetery and Y Ravine Cemetery. Almost 700 war casualties are buried or commemorated at these sites, with approximately 1/4 remaining unidentified even today.

National Historic Site

Along with the Canadian National Vimy Memorial, the Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial is one of only two National Historic Sites located outside of Canada.

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