Antrim and Down Branch Western Front Association
Antrim and Down BranchWestern Front Association   

2022  Programme of talks

We are pleased to announce that over 2022 we shall be holding a series of on-line talks with PRONI and other organisations. The programme is listed below with details of how to register. Events will be posted on here as they are organised.

 

ALL EVENTS START AT 19.00.

10 MAY (TUESDAY), 19.00, Stephen Scarth, ‘From the Ashes: The creation of the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland’.

 

Stephen talks about the destruction of the Public Record Office of Ireland in Dublin during the Irish Civil War, and the establishment of PRONI. These events are intertwined with the political, economic and social consequences following a decade of war. Stephen will explore how global events shaped the creation of a new PRONI and showcase how individuals make archives.

 

Stephen Scarth is Head of Public Services at PRONI and currently Acting Director.

This event is taking place on Zoom. Registration closes one hour before the event and an invite link will be sent to everyone registered one hour before the beginning of the event.

 

The talk is taking place on Zoom and is free. Registration closes one hour before the event and an invite link will be sent to everyone registered one hour before the beginning of the event.

 

The link to register is here.

 

 

8 JUNE, 19.00, Ronan McGreevy, ‘The Assassination of Field Marshal Sir Henry Wilson, MP’.

 

Great Hatred reveals the true story behind one of the most significant political assassinations to ever have been committed on British soil. On 22 June 1922, Sir Henry Wilson – the former head of the British army and one of those credited with winning the First World War – was shot and killed by two veterans of that war turned IRA members in what was the most significant political murder to have taken place on British soil for more than a century. His assassins were well-educated and pious men. One had lost a leg during the Battle of Passchendaele; the other had been injured during the German Spring Offensive. Shocking British society to the core, the shooting caused consternation in the government and almost restarted the conflict between Britain and Ireland that had ended with the Anglo-Irish Treaty just five months earlier. Wilson’s assassination triggered the Irish Civil War, which cast the darkest of shadows over the new Irish State. Why did two English-born Irish nationalists kill an Irish-born British imperialist?

 

Ronan McGreevy is an Irish Times journalist and videographer. He is the author of Wherever the Firing Line Extends: Ireland and the Western Front. His book Great Hatred: The Assassination of Field Marshal Sir Henry Wilson MP (Faber & Faber), is published this month. In 2018 he was made a chevalier de l’ordre des arts et des lettres by the French Government for his work on the first World War. He was the editor of Centenary, the official State book on the Easter Rising commemoration. He was also the editor of Was it for This: Reflections on the Easter Rising, an anthology of commentary on the Easter Rising from the pages of The Irish Times. It was published by The Irish Times and Ireland 2016. He is the editor of two eBooks based on The Irish Times archives: ‘Twas Better to Die: The Irish Times and Gallipoli 1915-2015 and The Mad Guns: Reflections on the Battle of the Somme 1916-2016. He is the presenter of the full-length documentary United Ireland: How Nationalists and Unionists Fought Together in Flanders which was shortlisted in the Imperial War Museums short film awards in 2018. “We both joined voluntarily, for the purpose of taking human life”.

The talk is taking place on Zoom and is free. Registration closes one hour before the event and an invite link will be sent to everyone registered one hour before the beginning of the event.

 

The link to register is here.

 

 

NO MEETING IN JULY OR AUGUST

 

 

14 SEPTEMBER (WEDNESDAY), 19.00, Dr Alexander Jackson talks about ‘The English and Irish domestic football leagues during the Great War’.

 

Dr Alexander Jackson, curator at the English National Football Museum, talks about his book on the impact of the Great War on Association Football in England. He will aim to provide an overview of football’s Home Front story, looking to move beyond the better known and controversial 1914/15 season, to the oft forgotten seasons between 1915 and 1918, when the FA banned the payment of players. This imposition of amateur values in a professional world marks the war out as a key period in the game’s history. The talk will explore the impact of this decision, as well as the wider impact of the war, upon the everyday experiences of players, fans, and administrators.

 

Dr Alexander Jackson has been a curator at the NFM since 2011. He was lead curator for the exhibition, ‘The Greater Game: Football and the First World War’ in 2014. This led him to researching and writing Football’s Great War: Association Football on the English Home Front, 1914-1918, published by Pen and Sword in 2022. 

 

 

The talk is taking place on Zoom and is free. Registration closes one hour before the event and an invite link will be sent to everyone registered one hour before the beginning of the event.

 

The link to register for this event is here.

 

 

12 OCTOBER (WEDNESDAY), 19.00, Dr William Butler talks about ‘Researching the British armed forces in the 19th and 20th centuries; Records at The National Archives’.

 

This talk will explore the range of material available to researchers on various aspects of the British armed forces at The National Archives, Kew. As well as acquiring knowledge of the range of records (some well-known, as not so well-known) on the subject, the talk will also explore some of the stories it is possible to uncover in the records as they relate to the army, navy, and air force during the 19th and early 20th centuries.

 

Dr Will Butler is the Head of Military Records at The National Archives, UK. He completed his PhD in 2013, publishing his first monograph with Manchester University Press, The Irish Amateur Military Tradition in the British Army, 1854-1992, in 2016. In July 2020, he co-authored The Disparity of Sacrifice; Irish Recruitment to the British Armed Forces, 1914-1918, which was published by Liverpool University Press. He is currently researching the British Army in the immediate aftermath of the First World War.

 

The talk is taking place on Zoom and is free. Registration closes one hour before the event and an invite link will be sent to everyone registered one hour before the beginning of the event.

 

The link to register for this event will be posted nearer the time.

 

 

9 NOVEMBER (WEDNESDAY), 19.00, Katherine Quinlan-Flatter talks about ‘Victory Through Faith – the Political Activation of the Wehrmacht’

 

This talk examines the attempts by the Nazi Party in the Second World War to create ideological warriors of the Wehrmacht. In the winter of 1943, several members of the Reich Propaganda Ministry and the military in Germany still believed that the war could be won if the ultimate secret weapon – the fanatical belief in the ideology of the Third Reich – were deployed.

 

In a last desperate attempt to implement a new type of political activism, a secret plan was thus put into practice from the end of 1943, under which suitable officers planted within the military units were entrusted with tasks ranging from the role of mentor to ideological trainer and finally to informer.

 

Recently rediscovered original documents from the General State Archives of Karlsruhe show the development of this complex and cumbersome programme and at the same time disclose a political and military environment characterized by the internal power struggles and infighting in the higher ranks of the Nazi Party, which ultimate lead to the failure of the programme.

 

Katherine Quinlan-Flatter was born in Calcutta in post-British India and grew up in London. Following studies in German and international history, International Relations and French, she moved to Germany where she is based in the Northern Black Forest in Baden-Württemberg.

Katherine researches local and national history of the 20th century until the end of the Second World War, with particular emphasis on both world wars and their impact on local life. She works as a historian and journalist, writing mainly for local German newspapers.

She also holds regular talks for the Imperial War Museum, the German War Graves Commission of North Baden and the Reserves of the Bundeswehr.

 

The talk is taking place on Zoom and is free. Registration closes one hour before the event and an invite link will be sent to everyone registered one hour before the beginning of the event.

 

The link to register for this event will be posted nearer the time.

 

 

 

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© Ian Montgomery