Almost 99 years after the last shots were fired at the end of the First World War it still captures the imagination, but now that even the survivors of this global conflict have died out, how do you paint a picture of people that are long gone? How do you put their existence in context with the manner in which they died, so that future generations retain a connection to the human impact of WW1 that transcends tales of strategic success or failure? Alexandra Churchill talks about writing for the centenary, about how she and her co-authors set out to preserve, or even create an emotional tie to such an event that makes it relevant to present and future generations, and the challenges and rewards of trying to keep the voices alive 100 years on those that lived through the war.
Alexandra Churchill is an author, researcher and historian who has contributed to and appeared on numerous TV documentaries, including the BBC’s Timewatch, Fighting the Red Baron for Channel 4 and Titantic with Len Goodman. Her first book was the widely acclaimed Blood and Thunder: The Boys of Eton College and the First World War. She has also written about Chelsea FC in the First World War, as well as on the Battle of the Somme. Her latest is about Passchendaele and she is currently writing and researching a biography of George V and the First World War.