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In 1995, Christopher Somerville set out across the world to track down men and women of the British Commonwealth who had fought in the Second World War, and to capture their stories in their own words. Many of the participants, all in their 70s and 80s, had never spoken a word about their remarkable experiences.
For some, the war meant medals and glory, pride and patriotism. For others, it meant racism, degradation and disillusionment. The shadow of death, imprisonment, torture and trauma hung heavy. There was joy, too; lots of laughter and camaraderie across nations, creeds and cultures, and enormous pride in playing a part in the greatest effort in history to defeat an evil doctrine.
Christopher Somerville has written almost 40 books ranging from travel guides to collections of poetry. He has written for the 'Daily Telegraph', 'The Times', the 'Irish Independent' and 'Saga Magazine'. His book 'The January Man: A Year of Walking Britain' was shortlisted for the 2017 Wainwright Prize.
Interviewing Christopher is Julia Somerville OBE. Julia has previously worked as a reporter and presenter for the BBC and ITN, presenting shows including BBC Nine O’Clock News and ITV News at Ten. She was awarded an OBE in 2013 for her work chairing the Advisory Committee on the Government Art Collection.