Community History Collection
Speaker: Richards, Bill, 1920 - 0, Interviewee, Male, Soldier
Speaker: Holyoak, V, Interviewer, Male
Summary of interview item: Talks about joining the Territorial Army (TA) in 1938 - 44th Leicestershire Regiment Searchlight Unit, uniform, training, camp of August 1939, setting up searchlights. Describes work with unit during World War II (WWII), raid on Coventry, training for anti-aircraft guns, regiment changing to 121 Light Aircraft Regiment (RATA). Describes build up, preparations, training for D-Day, sickness on crossing, horrific scenes at Caen, anecdote of getting lost in Brussels, period around Battle of the Bulge. Talks about action at the Rhine, fear of being shot at end of war, light casualties in regiment. Describes lead up to, and period after, VE Day. Talks about escorting prisoners at war crimes trials in Hamburg, Germans being forced to watch film of concentration camps. Reflects on difficulty of returning to civilian life, finishing apprenticeship, finding work. Mention of leave during war, trying to return to normal afterwards. Reflects that he was glad to have gone through it.
Place of birth:
Marital Status: , Children:
Location: County: Leicestershire
Location: Town/Place: Loughborough
Periods Covered: 1930s, 1940s, 1950s
Recording Date: 13/3/1996
Playing time: 1 hr 20 mins
Access Restrictions: Full clearance Item Copyright: CHCL
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