BOOK REVIEW: Bradford Remembering 1914-1918

Bradford Remembers 1914-1918 by Dr Kathryn Hughes

By Dr Kathryn Hughes in association with the Peace Museum UK (Bradford) The History Press, paperback, £12.99

The author is to be praised for the sheer effort and obvious determination in putting this book together. Anyone living in Bradford would be advised to get a copy as an historic document on how the city faced up to the privations of the First World War.

Using the experiences of many who were personally involved it is a graphic account of a city at war, from the calling up of its young men, their lives on the front line, and the efforts of those at home to live in such traumatic times.

Having the backing of the Peace Museum UK (Bradford) – the only museum dedicated to stories of peace, peacemakers and the peace movements in the UK – it is packed with letters and documents, plus many photographs, of the progress of the city from the outbreak of war to the end of hostilities and the return to what could never be a resumption of what was once a normal life.

It concludes with the search for a site for a war memorial which was finally unveiled in July 1922 – a memorial which, like others, cannot capture the full impact of the effort involved in raising troops to fight in such a conflict, the abject fear of being on the front line or even of remaining at home and waiting for the telegram which told of death.

But this book is its own tribute to the bravery of all involved and the administrative problems in dealing with such times.

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