A Beeston man has told the story of his parents during the war years.
Will Heard has written the book entitled ‘The war diary of a despatch rider’s wife’ to tell the intriguing tale from more than 70 years ago.
Vera Blacknell of Chetwynd Road, Chilwell married Harold Heard from Grasmere Road, Beeston in December 1939.
They had been childhood sweethearts but Harold had recently volunteered to join the army. He clearly saw his duty to King and country when he volunteered in November of that year.
He became a despatch rider and saw action throughout the war including with the British Expeditionary Force in northern France before rescue at Dunkirk
They lived for many years in Redwood Crescent, Beeston and then in Heard Crescent – named after councillor Joe Heard, a relation of Harold’s – and then back to Grasmere Road and finally to Marriott Avenue in Chilwell.
Vera kept some diaries during the war years. They said virtually nothing about the war but a great deal about her personal life, but she gave the diaries to Will shortly before her death.
Now Will has published his parent’s story during those vital years. It is a revealing insight into the minutiae of a young woman determined to live her life to the full despite it all and a young man who went to war 1939 as a fresh-faced youth, but was demobbed as a man with the lines of war etched on his embattled face.
Will said: “I came to write this book out of a deep sense of sadness that I had seen my parents pass away without asking them about the greatest adventure of their lives.
“Maybe they did not see it that way but the more that I read about living conditions in the war; about the monumental disaster known as Dunkirk and the supreme struggle for freedom we know as D Day, the more I appreciated that I had failed them and myself.”
Will’s book is available on Amazon and can be found by typing in the book title.