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Duration 3:35

The Great War: We were still wearing tropical kit

Henry opens by explaining he was first posted to Egypt, but little happened. He then came to France in Spring of 1916. He then explains the value and uses of the regulation steel helmet – some of them rather unorthodox! He then points out how death can be sudden and random from gas, artillery, snipers, tunnelling.


This clip is one of fourteen clips in which actor John Gregor recreates a Great War soldier called Henry Fairhurst of the Barnsley Pals. Here Harry explains where he was posted and says a bit about his kit.

Interesting or important points about the film

In all of these clips of Henry Fairhurst it is important to be aware that the actor is reconstructing a character from the past. He is using original source material and other research to create what he thinks is a plausible reconstruction of the thoughts and views of a private in the Barnsley Pals. When watching each clip it is important that viewers consider whether they feel the information given is accurate, but much more importantly whether they feel the tone and emphasis the actor gives to particular issues is in line with their own reading of the evidence from the time.


  1. Paul Sayles says:

    great description of the uses of his helmet. In my infantry time, I never used the helmet in the last way he described but just about everything else has stood the test of time; until they switched to Kevlar.

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