This DVD contains three related but separate episodes themed around one of the presenter's attempts to trace his Uncle Bill. Part one sees an expert from Ancestry.com explaining how to trace your ancestor. Part two followed the presenter as he finds Uncle Bill's records and traces his battles. Finally Part Three looks at the four main medals awarded during the war.
The first part sets the tone. This isn’t a high (or even medium) budget production - there are no pointless recreations or special effects, but instead we have two experts in their fields providing useful information - exactly what this sort of DVD needs to have. We are shown how to find resources on the Internet, taken to a local library to look at the resources available there, from subscriptions to some very valuable websites to the use of inter-library loans to get access to valuable and rare resources.
Part two follows Uncle Bill's progress through the war, starting in the East Yorkshire Regiment, with whom he served at Loos, on the Somme, Arras and at Passchendaele (clearly not a lucky man!), before returning to Britain with what appeared to have been a war ending case of trench foot. Tragically he was forced back to France during the manpower crisis of 1918, dying while serving with the Durham Light Infantry. This section starts with the presenters' efforts to trace Uncle Bill, visiting the PRO (now the National Archives) at Kew, then going to France to visit Loos and Ypres, and ends with a moving section on Bill's death and a visit to his memorial at Tyne Cot and the Menin Gate. This is the longest of the three sections, taking up about half of the 80 minute running time of the disc.
Part three looks at the four main medals awarded for the Great War - the 1914, 1914-15, British War Medal and Victory Medal, and the plaque and scroll sent to the relatives of the dead.
This DVD will be useful to anyone attempting to trace an ancestor who served in the Great War, both for the information it provides, and for the inspiration of Uncle Bill's example.
1 - Tracing your ancestors
2 - Tracing Uncle Bill
3 - Medals
Presenters: Tim Saunders and Richard Hone
Length: 80 minutes
Publisher: Pen & Sword Digital