Wednesday, 24 December 2014
Stan Brown's Christmas Truce
I've featured Stan Brown before and you can read some about Stan's Great War and Chelmsford's Old Contemptibles by following the links. Now, The Daily Express and the Mail Online have both included snippets from the interview I conducted with Stan back in 1981 and the Express has also included some audio.
Stan was the second man I interviewed (the first was Harry Bardsley) and I used to pop in and visit him fairly frequently. The photo above was published by the Chelmsford and Essex Chronicle in 1987 shortly after Stan died at the age of 90; the last of Chelmsford's Old Contemptibles.
I'm very pleased that two national newspapers have run Stan Brown's vivid memories of the Christmas Truce and because of this, I can even forgive the Daily Express - just - for it's opening line that Stan Brown, "was one of the soldiers who swapped bullets for balls and met the enemy in no man's land for a festive game of football." He didn't, and that story is balls. The Express also appears to have contrived to use an extract from the interview that doesn't mention the truce at all. Never mind, it's good that Stan has now received national recognition - and as an added bonus, you also get to hear the eighteen-year-old interviewer chipping in.
Need help with your own First World War research? Drop me a line. I offer a cost effective research service.