Johan Ryheul

Historian and Author

Member of the Bellewaarde 1915 Management Team

I asked Johan to join the team because of his boundless enthusiasm and non-stop work ethic. He demonstrates  a wealth of knowledge regarding the Great War and the area of Hooge in particular, which extends to the regiments and activities of the German side of the conflict. He is responsible for the production of the 'Bellewaarde 1915' DVD.

Johan has been an author of WW I aviation, U-boats andother subjects since 1996 and his first book took him almost 12 years of research. His 10th book was also his first, but this time in English.

His battlefield guiding is mainly to do with Marinekorps Flandern, aerial warfare above Flanders, pill boxes and military cemeteries, all of WW I. Johan states that he doesn't offer the classic battlefield guiding, but a much more interesting interactive version, something he learned from Prof. Christopher Pugsley.

In 2009 he was partly responsible for the organisation, of the protocol and leading the ceremonies of Jabbeke Remembers, which received some 3000 visitors in one weekend.

Johan has  organised several battlefield walks. One of them was for the Zeebrugge Conference, in which we remembered the Zeebrugge Raid in 1918. This happened in various locations during two days. We even used a Napoleonic fortress, a museum, a submarine and a ship on which we sailed in the Zeebrugge harbour to get the best possible idea on the events of 1918. Another example concerns the various nationalities and cultures participating in the Great War in Heuvelland, this was done with the participation of the tourist office. This two day event ended at the pill boxes of the Lettenberg, where we prepared a meal next to the pill boxes, just as it was done in WW I, with a participant in Belgian and German uniform who gave us more information on tactics and the uniforms. With candle and torch light the evening ended with reading parts of the book of Remarque concerning meals and food in the trenches.

Books by Johan Ryheul

- Marinekorps Flandern 1996 in Flemish
- Marinekorps Flandern 1997 in German
- Flugplatz Jabbeke, Flugplatz Stalhille 1999 in Flemish
- German Naval Air Service at the Western Front part 1 in English
- German Naval Air Service at the Western Front part 2 in English
- U-Boot Flottille Flandern I and II in English
- The German 38 cm guns in Flanders in Flemish
- Marinekorps Flandern 2010 in Flemish
- Flugplatz Jabbeke, Flugplatz Stalhille 2014 in Flemish (to be published)
- Marinekorps Flandern 2014 in English (to be published)
- KEK’s and Fokkerstaffels – The early German fighter units in 1915-1916 2014 in English (to be published)
- The German Jasta's and Air Service during 3rd Ypres - 2014 in English (to be published)
- Famous Tank Battles of World War I - 2014/2015 in English (to be published)