The Lochnagar mine crater on the 1916 Somme battlefields in France is the largest man-made mine crater created in the First World War on the Western Front. It was laid by the British Army’s 179th Tunnelling Company Royal Engineers underneath a German strongpoint called “Schwaben Hohe”. The mine was exploded two minutes before 07:30 am Zero Hour at the launch of the British offensive against the German lines on the morning of July 1st, 1916.
On 1st July 1978 the piece of ground containing this huge crater was purchased by Richard Dunning. The historical significance of the site and the fact that this ground still contains the undiscovered remains of German, French and British soldiers from the Great War of 1914-1918 convinced Richard that it was a place which should be preserved. Richard’s aim is to preserve the site and to make it a Garden of Remembrance and a place where visitors to the Somme can find a quiet opportunity for reflection. As a memorial it commemorates the men and women of all nations whose lives were affected by the Great War of 1914-1918.
The number of visitors to this site has increased dramatically in recent times, reaching approximately 200,000 people now visiting each year. [Source]