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Belchite Ghost Town Spain June 2017

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klempner69

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In the past
Between August 24 and September 7, 1937, loyalist Spanish Republican and rebel General Franco's forces in the Spanish Civil War fought the Battle of Belchite in and around the town. After 1939 a new village of Belchite was built adjacent to the ruins of the old, which remain a ghost town as a memorial to the war.
To reach Belchite is no easy feat given we were staying in Calella..several coach and bus changes and we find our town using good old Google Maps.Gaining entry to the ruins was vague as there were various reports that the town was free to go round,other reports saying it only guided tours..we tried the front gate and it was open with no one else around.I have found several old photos to show the then and the now.

The main entrance
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How the main street looked during the battle
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How it looks now
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One of several arched entrances 1937
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And now..rather Imber-esque
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Main Street
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St Agustin Church
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Rather damaged
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Dome no more sadly..I bet it was rather grand back in the day
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Some parts really are just a facade
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Further down the town
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The main Square with the Chemist on the corner plus fountain just to the left 1937
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And how it looks today
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I will leave it here as there is lots more to see,but I dont want to bore you
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For the whole walk-through in case you cannot sleep,see link below pls

https://klempner69.smugmug.com/Belchite-Ghost-Town-Spain-2017/
 

prettyvacant71

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Fantastic report klempner!

Thats a brilliant way of telling the story with the mix of old and new shots. Your third shot looks like it could have the carriage in from the bw old pic before it lol

The skeletal dome and arches look very surreal now, an enchanting explore:excitement:
 

Dirus_Strictus

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Fantastic report klempner!
Your third shot looks like it could have the carriage in from the bw old pic before it lol

No it's the Spanish equivalent of the British WW1 18pdr field gun - forget the calibre now, as shown in the B/W fourth image.In the early 60's I was fortunate to meet an English Lord who had a holiday retreat in Spain, but who had fought with the Loyalist forces as a young man against Franco's forces and told an interesting but horrific story. Interesting to see how the old enemies had come to accept each other, especially Franco. However I think that the fact that the once Loyalist Volunteer was now an English Lord may have influenced Franco somewhat and led to the amicable situation.

Brilliant report on this place klempner. I was twenty when I first visited this town (a diversion on the return journey from a month in the Atlas mountains with five friends and an ex MOD Humber 1 ton truck) and I suddenly understood why certain people had been so vocal in trying to stop WW2. Most of them had seen sights like this, the results of 'modern warfare' on the innocent.
 

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