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Arras

Arras is directly north of Paris and east of Normandy. The centre ville is marked by two large cobbled squares which are surrounded by matching 17th and 18th century Flemish houses. The Place de Heroes has markets twice a week and gothic style town hall with bell tower. There is also a 19th-century cathedral. During the First World War Arras was near the front and a long series of battles were fought nearby. A series of medieval tunnels beneath the city, unknown to the Germans, became a decisive factor in the French holding the city. The city, however, was heavily damaged and had to be rebuilt after the war including many of the houses in the squares. There is a war memorial on the outskirts of town which runs tours down in the tunnels. It is a good place to stay near the Aussie memorial in La Somme.

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