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Issue 15 - Spring 2016

bluebells

Welcome to the Spring edition of our newsletter! After a short break we are back with updates on the N/P and Secondary Education Councils, details of new projects supported by the Community Fund and various updates on health and safety issues. Why not check out our regular column, "Love Laeken" and find out about what the Dreve Sainte Anne looked like before it became the busy street it is today!

On the services front, remember that the first enrolment phase for transport closes on 31 May 2016. Enrolments for extra-curricular activities will open on 1 June so keep checking the website for details of the activites. You should also have received details about the upcoming Performing Arts Day via email - for those of you who are wondering what Periscolaire involves, this is an excellent opportunity to come and see!

Finally, you should have received detils via email about this year's Somerfesto. The Somerfesto Committee has organised a wide range of exciting activities for kids of all ages to enjoy. Please volunteer to help make it the most successful school party ever! 

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monument1Many people know about the tomb of the unknown French soldier at the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. How many people, though, know about the tomb of the unknown French soldier, which can be found here in Laeken? As it is November - the traditional month of remembrance - and as it is also 2014 - the 100th anniversary of the first year of the Great War - some readers may be interested perhaps in knowing more about this unique monument. It is unique because it is the only monument of its type to be found outside of France. The monument is located beside the Church of Notre Dame of Laeken, close to the cemetery gates. Note that the eternal flame in front of the monument is a later addition, dating from 1949. The flame was lit from the eternal flame under the Arc de Triomphe, Paris.

The monument was built by public subscription to honour the estimated 70,000 French soldiers who died in Belgium during the Great War. The unknown French soldier had died on the battlefields of West Flanders. The monument was inaugurated in July 1927 in the presence of King Albert  and Queen Elisabeth of Belgium and of Raymond Poincaré, who was President of France from 1913-1920.

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This postcard shows the inauguration ceremony (17.07.1927)

In 2013, a joint German-French ceremony of remembrance was held   at the monument. Some pictures and more information can be found on the French Consulate’s website.

Nearby is a bust of Ferdinand Foch, Marshal of France, who was the Allied Supreme Commander from March 1918 until the Great War ended in June 1919. It was erected in 1951 to mark the 100th anniversary of his birth.bust2

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