Latest News

As passionate hosts and historians, we’ll be writing regular articles about the past, present and future events at No.fifty6 and the Somme.

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May at No.fifty6 – May has brought many surprises and stories to tell

Posted on 31st May 2019 by Julie and David Thomson in General News.

May at No.fifty6 – May has brought many surprises and stories to tell May - “Here, leave desolate, passionate hands to spread
Violets, roses, and laurel with the small sweet twinkling country things
Speaking so wistfully of other Springs
From the little gardens of little places where son or sweetheart was born and bred.
In splendid sleep, with a thousand brothers
To lovers—to mothers
Here, too, lies he:
Under the purple, the green, the red,
It is all young life…” (Charlotte Mew, poet 1869-1928)

May is a capricious month – promises of summer, but hanging on to spring and changeable weather. Spring flowers and rapeseed give way to poppies and wheat. Some hot days, some chilly and wet, now getting more stable with pleasant May weather. May begins and ends with Fete Days in France on 1st May you give friends muguet – lily of the valley, to bring happiness, and the month ends with Ascension Day. It has been an extraordinary month with lots going on, stories to tell, only marred by one sad chicken story.

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April at No.fifty6 – Spring is here and with it many stories to tell

Posted on 30th April 2019 by Julie and David Thomson in General News.

April at No.fifty6 – Spring is here and with it many stories to tell April - Hush, thrush! Hush, missen-thrush, I listen...
I heard the flush of footsteps through the loose leaves,
And a low whistle by the water's brim. (Wilfred Owen)

April brings spring in full glory here. The dawn chorus is in full voice, the daffodils give way to tulips and many of the fields are bright yellow with rape/colza. The weather has seesawed between hot and sunny with drinks on the terrace to wet, cold and very windy. Whatever the weather has brought us, the history of the Somme and the extraordinary events here have captured many of our guests this month with many thought provoking and poignant moments shared by all those who gather round our table. No one leaves the Somme unmarked by their experience here. It is like the men whose stories we can only begin to tell want everyone to take a piece of this place back in their hearts with them…

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March at No.fifty6 - Winter Blows Out and Spring Breezes In

Posted on 31st March 2019 by Julie and David Thomson in General News.

March at No.fifty6 - Winter Blows Out and Spring Breezes In March, always capricious has been a month of two halves weather-wise. The first half was wet, windy and chilly. We had a week of windstorms with gusts up to 100km/h which saw tree damage and electricity lines down in many parts of the Somme. Luckily, apart from a few wayward branches on our trees and a few roof slates, (now repaired) we had no lasting damage. The second half of March has been warm and the blue skies are back. A beautiful weekend of Spring weather saw us put the clocks forward one hour on Saturday night. Spring really has arrived. It has been a busy month here, guests finding their way to our door and even a few outings for ourselves to discover new places.

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February - Spring Comes Early to No.fifty6

Posted on 28th February 2019 by Julie and David Thomson in General News.

February - Spring Comes Early to No.fifty6 After the snows in January and a chilly start to February, most of the month has been gloriously sunny, dry and with record February temperatures by day between 17-20 degrees regularly. The farmers have been busy ploughing and seeding, the birds are active in the trees and the trees are beginning to burst into new life. We even managed a barefoot walk by the sea at Berck –Plage this week. Spring has come early. The end of the month sees the weather change to wetter, but still reasonably mild - but we know winter may not be over yet. The perfect weather has seen guests come and explore and there has been plenty going on here from meetings to wayward ducks.

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January - A New Year Dawns at No.fifty6

Posted on 31st January 2019 by Julie and David Thomson in General News.

January - A New Year Dawns at No.fifty6 January…we certainly know winter is here. Two separate episodes of thick snow this month have kept us on our toes. The snow, while disruptive, brings a breathtaking beauty to our landscape and winter walks take on a new perspective. We have been kept busy this month because as always, despite the quiet winter months, there is always something going on here. Sadly, to end the month, we have some sad news about one of our animal menagerie.

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