Category Archive: Special Features

The War in the Air: A View from the Ground

Aerial Reconnaissance photograph of trenches c1917

We’re very grateful to Deb Fisher, Secretary of the Siegfried Sassoon Fellowship for allowing us to publish this article here, which we know you will all enjoy.   There will be many people reading this article who know a lot more than I do about aeroplanes and, indeed, about the First World War. All I […]

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Redeeming Features

BBC Radio 4 Today Programme

Further to yesterday’s BBC Radio 4 Today programme broadcast, I have now read an article in this morning’s Telegraph online entitled “Unpublished poems shed light on Siegfried Sassoon” in which Dr Jean Moorcroft Wilson, described as “Sassoon’s biographer” (she’s actually one of several and not necessarily the most eminent, or recent) expresses her surprise that […]

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A Petty Case of Right and Wrong?

BBC Radio 4 Today Programme

In light of this morning’s broadcast on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme it seems necessary to make some comment regarding the way in which the literature of the First World War is deemed by some to overshadow the military significance of the conflict. The broadcast itself was incredibly brief (perhaps not surprising, given current world […]

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One Man and a Boat Club

Journey's End Programme

It is a fairly well known story that R C Sherriff wrote his play, Journey’s End, to raise money for his rowing club. Or at least, that is what most people think. So, how exactly did this come about, and is the story really true? After the First World War, Sherriff had gone back to […]

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Brooke & Grenfell – Joined in the bright company of Heaven

Taplow Court Tableaux

These two young men both died in the first half of 1915, at the age of 27; both had written poems which are now widely studied; both came from fairly privileged backgrounds. However, today almost everyone has heard of Rupert Brooke, while Julian Grenfell’s name is relatively unfamiliar to most, unless they are actually studying […]

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Journey’s End – Interviews

Journey's End, Guildford - Group photo

Back in 2008, when we were informed that there was to be a production of R C Sherriff’s Journey’s End at the Electric Theatre in Guildford, we approached the producer, Sean McNamara and he agreed that we could interview the cast during rehearsals. Our main aim during these interviews was to see how the actors […]

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The History of the Poppy Appeal

Poppy flower

On 2nd May 1915, one of McCrae’s close friends, Lieutenant Alex Helmer was hit by a shell and killed. In the absence of a chaplain, McCrae took charge of the hastily convened funeral service and Helmer was buried in a make-shift grave just behind the lines. Wild poppies were beginning to flower between the growing […]

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