I was born in Sussex, England, in the 1960s: my father is a WW2 veteran who served
with 24th Field Regiment Royal Artillery from Anzio to the Gothic Line. From him,
and many of my uncles who were all also WW2 veterans, I developed a great interest
in military history. While this is not confined to just WW2, I have been visiting
WW2 battlefields for more than 25 years, and had the pleasure to meet and interview
numerous veterans. One of the highlights was meeting and chatting with Major John
Howard outside the Cafe Gondree in the early 1980s!
I read history at University, and finished my Masters Degree in History in 1993.
For more than twenty I have worked as a Battlefield Guide on the battlefields of
WW1, WW2 and Waterloo; work that has meant that for more than a dozen years I have
lived between the UK and our house in Northern France. Being 'on site' has meant
I have been able to get to some of the battlefields more often.
I have written five books on WW1 (published by Pen & Sword in the 'Battleground Europe'
series) and am currently researching a series of books about WW2; the first one
will be about Normandy and others will follow on Arnhem and Italy.
I also work regularly with the BBC on their 'Timewatch' and 'Meet The Ancestors'
series, and have appeared in a number of these relating to WW1 and in 2003 completed
a new documentary with the BBC entitled 'Gallipoli - The First D Day'. This involved
filming in both Turkey and Normandy, and was first screened on BBC2 in November 2003
with an audience of 3.5 million! In 2007/2008 I worked again on BBC Timewatch on
programmes about the end of WW1, and WW1 Air Aces, and also a 4-part series about
WW1 Ancestors which was screened on BBC1 in November 2008. I am currently working
on a TV project about WW2 for BBC1.
This website came into being because there is so little information online about
the British Army in the Second World War, and what there is, is somewhat scattered.
The site is in its early stages but I hope it will be of use to family historians,
researchers and battlefield visitors alike.
Thanks to Owen Dadge, Gerard Proudfoot, and Adam of WW2 Talk for their help.
The site is dedicated to my father, Bert Reed, pictured left.