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The Third Battle of Ypres, Passchendaele

What happened during the Third Battle of Ypres?

Thousands of men and women from around the British Empire played a role in this huge battle, which lasted from 31 July to 10 November 1917.

Presentation + Life Stories + Activity = Your Lesson!

Introductory Presentation

Use this ready-made PowerPoint to introduce Lives of the First World War to your class.

Download (14MB)
Choose your Life Stories

Pick Life Stories to investigate and download the Powerpoint containing primary sources relating to that person.

Life Stories
Follow the Activity

Take a look at our suggested activities to try with your class, as well as other IWM resources that relate to the theme.

Next step

Use Lives of the First World War to research names on your local war memorial - this could be a school memorial to former pupils, or a town or community monument.

Create a Community

Recommended Life Stories

We have selected Life Stories connected to this theme. Download the pack of sources connected to the Life Story.

Photo of Noel Godfrey Chavasse

Noel Godfrey Chavasse

Noel was an army doctor who earned two Victoria Crosses during the war

Download Pack
Photo of Ellis Humphrey Evans - Hedd Wyn

Ellis Humphrey Evans - Hedd Wyn

Ellis Evans was a Welsh poet known as Hedd Wyn, who died on 31 July 1917

Download Pack
Photo of Henry John, known as Harry, Patch

Henry John, known as Harry, Patch

Harry Patch was the last veteran of the battle, who lived until 2009

Download Pack
Photo of Nellie Spindler

Nellie Spindler

Nellie Spindler was a nurse who treated the wounded, and was killed by shellfire

Download Pack
Photo of Mazzini Tron

Mazzini Tron

Mazzini Tron was an Australian chaplain who helped his comrades

Download Pack
Photo of William Rider-Rider

William Rider-Rider

William Rider-Rider was a Canadian photographer who recorded the battle

Download Pack

Suggested Activities

1. Use the facts, images, evidence and stories on Life Story pages to compare and contrast individual experiences - think about similarities and differences between these people’s lives.

  • What was their experience of the Third Battle of Ypres?
  • What are the key themes in their stories? Consider concepts such as identity, separation, friendship, love, bravery and loss.


2. Study one of the sources in detail. When was it written, and for what purpose? What does it tell you about the person’s Life Story? Pick out details about their age, background and family. How does this information relate to their wartime experiences?


3. Create a mini exhibition based on one person’s story. Select three sources from the person’s Life Story page, and create a title and theme for the exhibition.

4. Encourage creative responses inspired by a Life Story, such as poetry, letters, art, drama, music, or dance.

Activity Resources

Supported by

The Charles Skey Charitable Trust


We really enjoyed using Lives of the First World War ... the student feedback was overwhelmingly positive.

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