Search results for WW1.

'Alice in Wonderland and her lost boys: from Oxford and the rabbit hole to the Somme and beyond' with Marietta Crichton Stuart


This is the story of Alice Liddell, who, as a little girl (pictured), had been the inspiration for Lewis Carroll's story 'Alice's Adventures Underground'. With royal romance, a society marriage, and the loss of two sons in the Great War, Alice led an eventful life in an rapidly changing world. Also, during the talk, Marietta reveals some unexpected…

Ground-breaking Developments in Treatment of the Wounded on the Western Front 1914-18 with Tom Scotland


Tom Scotland discusses the tremendous progress that was made in the treatment of wounded soldiers during the Great War, which significantly improved their chances of survival. This is a Zoom Meeting: for details on how to join in contact  

It’s My War Too - Children at War 1914-1918 with Dr Vivien Newman


Dr Vivien Newman draws on her latest book to discuss children’s experience of World War One.   This is a Zoom Meeting: for details on how to join in contact

Victory Over Blindness: the Story of the Blind Veterans of the First World War and the Man Who Inspired Them with Rob Baker


Rob Baker is the archivist at Blind Veterans UK (formerly St Dunstan’s) where his responsibilities include safeguarding and adding to the historical material which the charity has accumulated over its 106-year history. This talk will focus on the remarkable blind man Sir Arthur Pearson who founded the charity in response to the injuries suffered by…

Cork VC's of the Great War with Gerry White


During the Great War, a total of thirty-seven Irish servicemen were awarded the Victoria Cross. Of that number, five had connections to the city and county of Cork. These were: Corporal Michael O’Leary of the 1st Battalion, Irish Guards; Corporal William Cosgrove, 1st Battalion, Royal Munster Fusiliers; Captain Gerald O’Sullivan, 1st Battalion, Roy…

The Stomach for Fighting: Food and the Soldiers of the Great War with Rachel Duffett


Food is critical to military performance, but it is also central to social interaction and fundamental to our sense of identity. The soldiers of the Great War didn't shed their eating preferences with their civilian clothes and the army rations, heavily reliant on bully beef and hardtack biscuit, were frequently found wanting. Nutritional science o…

Riding the Red Zone: The Tour of the Battlefields in 1919 with Tom Isitt


The Circuit des Champs de Bataille (the Tour of the Battlefields) was held in 1919, less than six months after the end of the First World War. It covered 2,000 kilometres and was raced in appalling conditions across the battlefields of the Western Front, otherwise known as the Zone Rouge. The race was so tough that only 21 riders finished, and it w…

Dr Peter Hodgkinson will speak on 'Fear and Courage in the Trenches'


Our speaker, Peter Hodgkinson, is a Clinical Psychologist.  He has an MA (2006) in First World War Studies from Birmingham University, and a PhD (2013) in Infantry Battalion Commanders. Fear is natural in war, but the demand for courage is remorseless. What was the experience of the British soldier of fear, and were the social restrictio…

Sikh Voices of the Great War with Sukwinder Bassi


The Great War produced a vast literature of novels, poems and myths, but the story of Sikh soldiers at this time is mostly forgotten. The book on which this talk is based seeks to address this by telling the story of the war through the eyes of the Sikh soldier and Sikh people, examining their war time experiences of the Western Front, England and …

Lance verses Lance: the Myth of Moncel with Major Phil Watson


The Talk On the 7 September 1914 the 9th Lancers (2nd Cavalry Brigade) conducted the last lance verses lance charge on the Western Front. It took place at Le Moncel, just outside Paris, on what would become the end of the Retreat and the beginning of the Battle of the Marne. The commanding officer, and two troops of B Squadron charged a squadron f…

Reports from Iraq - The Mesopotamia Commission Report and the resignation of Austen Chamberlain with Tony Bolton


On the 20 July 1916, the Prime Minister H H Asquith bowed to the outrage sweeping Parliament and country and agreed to appoint a Commission of Inquiry into the debacle that was the Mesopotamia Campaign. The Inquiry established by Act of Parliament was to inquire into: ‘The origin, inception and conduct of operations of war in Mesopotamia, includin…

"We Are The Commonwealth War Graves Commission" with Tony Matthews


Tony Matthews of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission gives an introduction to the history and on-going work of the organisation.   [Image: Connaught Cemetery, Thiepval]

Lt Col John Sherwood Kelly VC CMG DSO ‘The Bravest Man in the British Army’ with Philip Bujak


Author and Historian Philip Bujak will be talking about Lt Col John Sherwood Kelly VC CMG DSO ‘The Bravest Man in the British Army’. A former Army officer with the Anglian Regiment who has written on many aspects of the First and Second World Wars.

'The Princess Mary Christmas Box' with Prof Peter Doyle


In 1914, Princess Mary, the only daughter of King George V, was just 17. She conceived the idea of sending a Christmas gift to all those serving in uniform, ‘afloat and at the front' and with great determination, set about the task. Peter Doyle tells the story of this extremely sophisticated gift, which by 1919, had reached some 2.7 million people …

'High Wire: Travels Along the Italian Front' with Tom Isitt


Author and historian Tom Isitt gave us a wonderful talk in April of last year, 'Riding in the Zone Rouge: The Tour of the Battlefields 1919' and he returns this month with another fascinating tour, this time of the Italian Front, from 'the howling wilderness' of the Isonzo battlefields to the soaring peaks of the Dolomites. He presents a WW1 that m…

Not Just a Young Woman’s War: Older Women in the War’s Zones with Dr Viv Newman


Whilst war is generally associated with the young, this talk focuses on older women’s responses and how a number, despite their age, were determined to serve their country, frequently overseas. The oldest of the cast was in her 80s yet correctly believed that she could “run as fast and work as hard” as many of those who were young enough to be her …

'The Battle of Verdun' with Christina Holstein


Christina Holstein is a leading authority on the Battle of Verdun, having for many years lived close to the battlefield, and has explored it in great detail. She conducted many tours of the battlefield for individuals and groups and, with her specialized knowledge of the terrain, has acted as consultant to a number of other historians, TV producers…

“It’s All A Bit Heath Robinson” with Lucy Gosling


Lucinda will be giving us a fascinating talk on Heath Robinson, who remains one of Britain’s most famous inventors, inspiring the phrase "it’s all a bit Heath Robinson", describing any implausible and unnecessarily complex contraption. He was born in London and his first talent was illustrating and cartoons. But it was his love of inventing that w…

“A Time to Live, A Time to Die” with Tom Scotland


PLEASE NOTE: THIS MEETING WILL NOT BE AT OUR USUAL VENUE. CHECK THE ADDRESS AND MAP BELOW, AND USE THE BRANCH CONTACT EMAIL IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS  Tom sets out to describe the tremendous progress that was made in the treatment of wounded soldiers during the Great War, which significantly improved the chances of survival. He describes the groun…

'The Neuve Chapelle Memorial: Commemorating the Indian Corps on the Western Front' with Mark Connelly


India made a huge contribution to the British Empire's war effort between 1914 and 1918 including the despatch of over a million men to the fighting fronts. An Indian Corps arrived on the Western Front in the autumn of 1914 and played a vital role in the defensive battles around Ypres. In the spring it took part in the series of offensives launched…

'Voices From Three Crises: World War One, Covid-19 and Ukraine' - Dr Viv Newman


Viv Newman presents an overview of how three crises impacted on written culture.  The First World War led to an outpouring of literature, with professional and amateur writers and poets wielding their pens as they sought to make sense of a world that was irrevocably changing lives. Just over a century later, the Covid-19 pandemic had a similar effe…

Gardening the World – a talk delivered by the CWGC


The Commonwealth War Graves Commission is responsible for the care and maintenance of war graves in of the order of 23,000 locations around the world, commemorating almost 1.7 million individuals. In just over a century they have constructed two and a half thousand cemeteries and plots, and have a multinational workforce of around thirteen hundred …

'Deborah the Tank - a Friend Making Machine' with Fiona Graham


'Deborah' (D51) was a British Mark IV Female tank, knocked out during the battle of Cambrai in 1917 and subsequently buried as infill of a crater in the village of Flesquières in France. Rediscovered and excavated in 1999, it is now the centre piece of a small museum in the village. Fiona Graham will be discussing the history of this particular tan…