By Terry Charman, Melvyn Bragg
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Extra resources for The Day We Went to War
He is the author of The German Home Front 1939–1945. ’ Neville Chamberlain, 3 September 1939. FOREWORD I just missed the start of the Second World War. On Sunday, 3 September 1939 I was not quite ready for landing. That happened on 6 October. Nevertheless the war was the landscape and currency of my childhood – its background noise, its daily prayers, the atmosphere of life both at that time and in some ways forever since. Windows were blacked out nightly to give the German bombers no chink of light and even we children staggered rather drunkenly around the twisting alleys of the small town with weak pencil torches nervously flashed on and off but always pointed downwards.
This was one of them. I wanted to make a television programme about the day the Second World War broke out, the very day. To track through that day, to show what happened here in my own country and also in France, Germany, Poland, Australia, America, the Commonwealth and elsewhere. The proposition was accepted by ITV for an hour-long documentary. You always want more and it would have been good to have two or three programmes which included a long and complex lead up to the war but others in print and in exhibitions will I’m sure do that.
Many believed, or professed to believe, him. Chamberlain flew back from Munich promising ‘peace for our time’, and the country’s most popular columnist, Godfrey Winn, gushed in the Sunday Express, ‘Praise be to God and to Mr Chamberlain. ’ In Britain there was an immense feeling of relief that war had been averted, but many entertained feelings of guilt too. Leslie Weatherhead, Britain’s leading religious writer and broadcaster, spoke for many when he wrote, ‘Do you feel a little uneasy, as though you had made friends with a burglar on condition that if he took nothing from you or your immediate friends, you would say nothing about what he took from somebody else?
The Day We Went to War by Terry Charman, Melvyn Bragg
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