The talk covers women’s experiences driving ambulances for the British, Belgium and French Armies on the Western Front during WW1. The talk is complemented by many original, rare and wonderful photographs from Paul’s private collection, and also reflects on the Edwardian prejudices towards women and how their war experiences changed their lives.
Paul Handford MBE joined the West Midlands Police in 1976
He helped to establish and develop the National Neighbourhood Policing Programme and in 2006 his work was recognised in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list when he was made a Member of the British Empire, “for services to policing”.
Since retiring in 2006, Paul was able to focus more on his passion, the research and medal collecting to British civilian volunteer ambulance drivers and units during WW1. Paul and his wife Su, have travelled extensively along the entire length of the Western Front in pursuit of this research.
Paul also enjoys presenting talks on the subject to various history groups and organisations up and down the country and has supported exhibitions at the ‘In Flanders' Fields Museum’ in Ypres, Belgium, and the Cadbury Research Library at the University of Birmingham, where medals and other related items from his personal collection were exhibited.
Paul is a member of the Orders of Medals Research Society and was a guest speaker at their 2014 and 2019 National Conferences; a member of the Western Front Association, Chair of the Military History Society of West Midland Police, Committee member of the Birmingham Medals Society and Committee member of the West Midlands Police Heritage Museum.