Laurent Phillpotts from Jamaica in his RAF uniform during the war
World War Two was the most destructive global conflict in history. It began when Nazi Germany unleashed ferocious attacks across Europe – but it spread to the Soviet Union, China, Japan and the United States.
Our World War Two Living Memorial website carries the previously untold and newly discovered stories of the men and women from different races, cultural backgrounds, and service experience who fought and contributed to victory
We have interviewed veterans from many different backgrounds. It’s worth taking a special look at the often neglected and ignored personal stories of volunteers from Africa and the Caribbean. All our captivating accounts tell of the veterans’ individual sacrifices and legacies through film, as well as letters.
Anyone who fought in uniform in the Second World War has got to be at least 88 years old; many will be much older. That’s not many people, and the number gets fewer and fewer each month. That’s why this Second World War Living Memorial is so important. It’s significant for us all, but it’s particularly poignant for all those with an African-Caribbean, or indeed a South Asian background. If people today don’t mark the sacrifices of those who went before, their contributions will be lost. History doesn’t write itself.
The website as a ‘living memorial’ will be a valuable resource in and of itself and follows on directly from the solid foundation laid by The-Latest.com's Divided by race, united in war and peace film. It will be easily accessible, including by mobile phone and tablet. In my experience of university teaching this is essential to maximise reach and impact with young people in particular.