The Boer War

The Great War

Peacetime Soldiering

World War II — The Navy

World War II — The RAF

World War II — The Army

The Cold War

Into a New Century



Originally I was going to call this book "Soldiers’ Tales as told to the girls back home". But then my son kept reading the stories over my shoulder and chipping in with bits and tales he said his Grandma had told him she had heard from returning soldiers, but I seemed to have forgotten. He also said his own young friends in the armed services had given him accounts of much more modern conflicts when they returned to England. That is why this book is now called "Soldiers’ Tales as told to the folk back home". I hope you find it interesting.

I was in my late teens as the 1939 -1945 war finished and the soldiers, sailors and airmen gradually came home to civilian life. All the boys I knew and/or went out with had been in one of the armed services either during the war or on National Service. (For several years after the war finished all boys when they reached the age of eighteen were called up for two years’ military service. This could have been served safely in England or it could have involved being shipped anywhere in the world such as Burma or Malaya where local fighting was taking place.) When I dropped round to tea with my school friends, their older brothers back from the war were often there chatting with us girls. When I started work in London in the 1950s, when I was in my twenties, all the men I worked with or went out for a drink with after work — as groups of us usually did — had been in the 1914-18 war or the 1939-45 war.

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