British private served with General Service Corps in GB, 1944-1945; fusilier served with Royal Northumberland Fusiliers in GB, 1945
REEL 1 Background in Glasgow and Newcastle-upon-Tyne, GB, 1928-1944: family; membership of Boys Brigade and Army Cadet Force; memories of uncle; work of father; family; area grew up in; religion; discipline and dialect; description of family home; memories of childhood; leisure activities; education including health problems; memories of brother; further details of education; move to Newcastle-upon-Tyne and memories of stepmother; Police Cadet duties during and after air raids.
REEL 2 Continues: contact with Highland Light Infantry troops in Glasgow; shelter taken from air raids; damage in Glasgow and North East from air raids; promiscuous relationships between men and women; joining of army; civilian work including later reunion with colleague in Mombasa and details of pay; leisure activities including Royal Engineers and conscientious objectors in area; holidays; transport in Newcastle-upon-Tyne; listening to radio; leisure activities; war service of family members.
REEL 3 Continues: war service of family members; civilian work; membership of Life Boys and Boys Brigade; activities with Boys Brigade including story of former Boys Brigade member charged with desertion; make-up of unit; opinion of Boys Brigade; membership of Army Cadet Force including later involvement as adult; make-up of unit; pattern of training including weapons in unit; details of camp; story of night out in York shortly after call-up; discipline; background to joining army.
REEL 4 Continues: process of joining army, 11/1944; posting and journey to York; story of arrival in York and accidental journey to Strensall Barracks. Aspects of period as private with General Service Corps in GB, 1944-1945: situation on arrival at Fulford Barracks; issue of kit including cap badge worn; selection tests and results; description of Fulford Barracks including relationship with fellow recruits and accommodation; other units at Fulford Barracks; memories of NCO in barrack room; cleaning of accommodation including personal space; NCO instructors; physical fitness; rations; cross country running; kit inspections; replacement of kit; standard of turnout.
REEL 5 Continues: Christmas 1944; discipline; settling into army routine; relationship with and background of older recruits; demobilisation number; guard duties; air defence duties; sports; leisure activities; listening to radio; reactions of recruits to army life; physical fitness; physical training; route marches including help given to recruit with bad feet; description of weapons instruction.
REEL 6 Continues: details of rifle training including story of quiet recruit from Cumbria and problems from recoil; stripping and firing of light machine-gun; make-up of machine-gun team; grenade training including process of throwing and firing rifle grenades; opinion of Bren gun; field craft training including types of movement and judging distance; standard required to carry on including tests; opinion of training; opinion of NCOs and officers; posting to 26 Machine Gun Training Centre in Chester, 2/1945; choice of regiment; details of unit and recruits.
REEL 7 Continues: memories of officers. Aspects of period as fusilier with Royal Northumberland Fusiliers in GB, 1945: description of camp; driving of carriers; make-up of unit; memories of fellow recruits; further details of camp including accommodation; cleaning of floor; methods of maintaining creases in trousers; details of stickman in guard; reactions to joining Northumberland Fusiliers; memories of friends in unit; make-up of unit; driving and maintenance training including story of crash with Baby Austin and driving of carriers; use of carriers; firing of machine gun; knowledge of different roles in team; details of Vickers machine gun including uses; daily routine; opinion of rations.
REEL 8 Continues: issue of rations; guard duties; leisure activities; question of contact with women; officer cadet training unit in area; story of etiquette course; sports in army; splitting up of recruits for specialised training; posting in Wales; accommodation; memories of officer including details of firing gun during exercise and changing barrel; breakfast on farm.
REEL 9 Continues: accommodation including relationship with civilians; details of base; make-up of unit; knowledge of war’s progress; possibility of fighting in war; discussion of uses of tanks and infantry; training for role in action including cooperation with infantry; communications including use and transport of 18 wireless set; training with machine gun team including transport of gun; details of ammunition including use of tracer; firing in support of an infantry advance; posting to 2nd Battalion as batman. Aspects of period in transit from Dover, GB, to Salonika, Greece, 1945: route taken;
REEL 10 Continues: reactions to posting abroad; situation in Greece; length of journey; duties during voyage; conditions on ship; sleeping arrangements; seasickness; leisure activities including gambling; impressions of civilians in France; internal security duties during stop in Cairo; troops and bumboats in Port Said; security ratings in Cairo; accommodation in camps; tablets taken; story of punishment given to rapist in Cairo; description of VD warning film watched; army attitude to VD; story of woman found in bamboo cage in Korea; lack of women in Seoul; actions in Korea.