International Conference St.-George's Day 1918


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Saturday 19 April


Location : Zeebrugge

Languages : English and Dutch/Flemish


Program :

9.30 Arrival of the participants at Channel 16 Werfkaai - Zeebrugge

Start of the conference will be 10.00

1. Marinekorps Flanders and the importance of the Flemish harbours for the German U-boat, torpedo boat and destroyer weapon by Johan Ryheul

12.10 : lunch, location at your own choice

13.45 : group gathering at the River Palace (ship)

14.00 : start program

2. Mines and torpedoes of WW I by Vincent Hoffman, DOVO (Belgian military service which defuses bombs etc)
Development and use of sea mines and torpedo’s in WW I.  Minefields such as Dover Barrage, the northern barrage and it’s effects on naval warfare.

15.00 Break, afterwards we walk to the Seafront theme park

Guided visit to the Russian sub of the Foxtrot class, we take a closer look at the development of subs from WW I till the cold war.  Also a visit to a light vessel.

Visit of the Seafront theme park.  We start with the part which gives us a closer look at torpedo’s of both world wars, see some parts of the movie Das Boot, etc.

At Seafront we continue the conference at 16.30 :

3. Dover Patrol, the RNAS and the U-boat war by Johan Ryheul

Afterwards we will see a large diorama of the harbour in the post war years and of the new harbour, which will give us a better idea of what we will see at night during the harbour trip by ship.

17.30 we continue our visit of Seafront a pay a visit to the temporarily exhibition on the Zeebrugge raid 1918.

18.30 We board the River Palace again and start in style with a glass of sparkling wine

19.00 We start the port tour with a 20 minutes movie made by the most famous German U-boat ace Lothar von Arnauld de la Perriere ! We follow him, his crew and sub during the attack and sinking of a number of ships.

Afterwards we continue with the last two parts of the conference :
4. Saint-George for England !
5. Conclusions : A twist in the dragon’s tail ?

With the help of a powerpoint presentation we will see the various locations that were important that night of the raid, and will see how it looked in 1918, what happened there, and how it looks now.  A perfect way to get an idea of what really happened and to see at the same time the present location.

20.30 An accordion player brings us WW I tunes and other music, while we have some sandwiches and wine.

22.00 End of the program of day 1

Sunday 20 April

9.30 : Zeebrugge, participation for those who want to the memorial service in Zeebrugge church, we also follow the group and military to the Zeebrugge churchyard and at the Admiral Keyes square.  The FEW will lay down wreaths at both locations.
We will return to the Zeebrugge churchyard for a very special message, as we seem to have identified one of the unknown officers buried here.

Lunch at the location of your choice

13.30 : we leave for Oostende and a visit to the Fort Napoleon, a fortress of the Napoleonic era and in WW I a German stronghold.  We visit the fortress, see a German painting, and take a closer look at the location where HMS Brilliant and Sirius stranded.

Afterwards we go to Oostende harbour for a visit at the location where the Vindictive partially blocked the harbour entrance and for a visit to the Vindictive Monument.

End of day 2 around 16.30 hours

This program is an organisation of the Dutch WW I Forum – Forum Eerste Wereldoorlog,  the Davidsfonds and Euro-Line.

Participation costs 35 euro, and includes :
Conference, guided visit to Seafront theme park, boat trip with the River Palace, a glass of sparkling wine, sandwiches and wine, music by accordion player, guided tour in Oostende.

Not included : all other meals, drinks, snacks, transport, hotel or other accommodations, entrance fee Fort Napoleon etc.

Transport happens with own means.  There is a possibility to travel along in the car of some of our Dutch/Flemish participants if mentioned in advance.

More information on how to participate will follow soon.

There is also a possibility to participate in the Saturday evening program only on the River Palace from 18.30 on, in that case the cost will be 25 euro.

For further information, you can PM me.

Press conference will be held on Monday 7 April at 14.00 at the Seafront theme park of Zeebrugge

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