I Was There: The Great War Interviews

About the Show

The Imperial War Museum holds an extraordinary treasure trove of First World War eyewitness testimony. Filmed 50 years ago for the BBC’s landmark series The Great War, only a tiny fraction of this footage ever made it to air. This programme delves into this vault of powerful, personal interviews with soldiers and civilians, enabling their voices to be heard for the first time. This poignant film brings the conflict to vivid and shocking new life: from the horrors of artillery bombardment and the anguish of young men forced to become killers, to fleeting outbreaks of peace on the battlefield, and the heartbreaking stories of the women on the home front who lost those closest to them. This is the Great War as visceral, lived experience, with eyewitnesses still spry, alert and passionate. Finally, they are given their chance to speak directly to us across time.