Forces veterans wanted for heritage initiative

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Poppyscotland is on the lookout for veterans from every conflict since 1939 for an ambitious new project that will capture their precious stories in a series of interviews.

The Veterans’ Voices project, which is being funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and the chancellor using LIBOR funds, will seek out veterans from across Scotland to compile a definitive dossier of interviews to cover every conflict over the past 80 years.

Gordon Michie, head of fundraising at Poppyscotland, said: ‘Veterans’ Voices will be a unique resource of high-quality film archive of interviews with veterans living in Scotland of military conflict from 1939 to the present day. Our ambition is to capture as many of these personal recollections so that their stories can live on.

‘We aim to have an interview with at least one veteran from every conflict where the British armed forces have been stationed since 1939. We also aim to have a range of veterans of different ages, backgrounds and experiences. Interviews will cover veterans’ experiences and their thoughts on remembrance.

‘It is important that these stories are captured now before they can no longer be shared, ensuring greater understanding for future generations. What’s more, our research has shown that audiences are keen to understand more about recent conflicts and the experiences of our veterans.’

The veterans will be asked the same set of questions giving a unique insight into their experiences and views at different times in history. Poppyscotland will also conduct group interviews to allow intergenerational interaction.

The completed body of work will be available to view on the charity’s learning website and made available to schools. The short video clips will help the public to develop a better understanding and engage with veterans, and have greater appreciation of more recent and less well-known conflicts.

While all veterans are encouraged to get in touch, it is particularly important that interviews include a real social and gender mix.

If you are a veteran and would welcome the chance to tell your story, contact Veterans’ Voices researcher Hannah Uttley on 07833 750 937, or at veteransvoices@poppyscotland.org.uk.