• FREE
  • Chelsea, London
  • FREE
  • Chelsea, London

Chemical Warfare in the Great War: Experience and Legacies

French troops don their gas masks while manning a trench, c1915

Join an international group of scholars to explore chemical warfare in the First World War and its legacies today.

‘Gas! GAS! Quick, boys! — An ecstasy of fumbling
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time’

Chemical warfare looms large in our imagination of the First World War. But how was gas experienced on the Western Front and beyond? Did the soldiers of other combatant powers have different experiences? What were the longer-term legacies of these experiences, and are they still relevant today?

These questions and more will be explored in this one-day conference, organised in partnership with the Western Front Association.

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Museum doors open



10.10am - 11.15am

Keynote 1
  • Professor Edward M Spiers (University of Leeds):
    'Chemical Warfare in the First World War'

11.15am - 11.30am

Coffee break

11.30am - 1.00pm

Panel 1
  • Professor Matthias Strohn (University of Buckingham):
    'The German Experience of Chemical Warfare in the First World War'
  • Dr Vanda Wilcox (Independent Historian):
    'The Italian Experience of Chemical Warfare in the First World War'
  • Simon Jones (Independent Historian):
    'The Use of Gas in North Russia'

1.00pm - 2.00pm


2.00pm - 3.00pm

Keynote 2
  • Professor Peter Doyle (London South Bank University):
    'Gas at the Battle of Loos Revisited'

3.00pm - 3.15pm

Coffee break

3.15pm - 4.45pm

Panel 2
  • Carol Bratcher (PhD candidate, University of Buckingham):
    'The Influence of Terrain on Chemical Warfare in the First World War'
  • Clem Maginniss (Independent Scholar):
    'British Preparations for Chemical Warfare, 1939-40'
  • Rocky Salmon (former MOD):
    'Legacies of the First World War in Today’s Chemical Warfare'

4.45pm - 5.00pm

Closing remarks

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"First time @NAM_London today. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Thought the presentation & interpretation made the subject accessible..."