Happy Birthday 🥳 – Arras, France

Obviously after our Dunkerque trip we had to watch the Dunkirk film in the evening. Our Superdrug SIM and Fire stick combo worked well with the great surround sound in Clouline (our motorhome) made for an atmospheric evening. Before the film, we obviously had to go back to our favourite bar in Bergue in a pre-birthday drink.

Friday was Kevin’s birthday so a relaxing day was planned, starting with a short 2 hour drive to our next destination Arras. We chose this destination amongst the many potential WW1 site to visit locally as my great grandfather Edward Sikhs Godwin’s regiment the 9th Royal Fusiliers served in this area. He was only 17yrs and 9 months when he enlisted and served to nearly the end of the war in August 1919, when he was medically discharged. It is safe to say his life was never the same again afterwards and he died at only 39 years old. So it felt more personal to come here.

We arrived into the brand new Aire in Arras alongside La Scarpe river which was the seen of some of the local WW1 battles. However, it is a very different scene these days, it was full of motorhomes, mainly French and Belgian, though a couple of British vans, the first we have seen. One of whom came over to have a look at Clouline as Niesmann Bischoff are fairly rare in the UK. The Aire is fabulous with very modern and clean facilities with a very technical system of QR code receipt provided on arrival when paying which you then use to get water and electric. After a couple of days without services in Bergue we got everything on charge when we arrived.

Once we were all set up in Clouline, we headed off into Arras to explore. A quick 10 min walk took us to the two main squares in Arras the Place des Héros and the Grand Place d’Arras. The squares are surrounded by 17th and 18th century Flemish Baroque houses and 345 sandstone columns which form and arcade unique in France. We spent the afternoon and evening enjoying some fantastic French cuisine and celebrating Kevin’s birthday in style.

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