Hire a historian

BATTLE OF BRITAIN (1940) ANNIVERSARY TOUR

Dateline: 7 July 2020

I am rather miffed that my 2020 Smithsonian Journeys Battle of Britain assignment has now been cancelled due to Corona, and won’t be offered again until 2022. I can’t wait that long…

If you can hire an interpreter, a cleaner or a driver, why not hire a historian?

Here’s the deal:

EYE

…Propose a customised Battle of Britain itinerary (this will depend on how many days you hire me for). To commence your adventure, please phone or whatsapp: +33 6 72 51 26 91

…Prefer 2-day weekend assignments (Saturday & Sunday), but am indifferent to the seasons and will start operating as soon as sanitary conditions allow

…Pick you up with a premium vehicle on the day, from any location in London, and drive you to the sites and back

…Fill you in with expert commentary on the way to the sites, on arrival at the sites and throughout the day

…Provide you with the bigger picture in a daily evening talk (best done over a drink in the bar or conference room of your hotel)

…Get you into the sites without having to wait in a queue

…Arrange other expert guides at the sites, who fill you in on the finer technical points (I am a historian and not an aircraft engineer)

YOU

… Pay me for my time ONLY – rate per day: GB £ 1,200 (or equivalent in Euros)

… Choose which and how many days you need me for (minimum: 2, maximum: 4), from the menu of options below.

… Can be up to 6 participants

… Organize your own return travel from your home to London, and your accommodation in London

… Pay for your own meals (I will direct you to suitable lunchtime locations)

What’s on the MENU?

Day 1 – The two key sites you MUST visit to understand the Battle of Britain

Battle of Britain Bunker, Uxbridge

Bentley Priory Museum, Stanmore

Day 2 – The nerve center of the British effort in WWII, followed by a spot of walking in Central London

Churchill War Rooms, Whitehall

Statue of Churchill, Parliament Sq.

Battle of Britain and RAF Memorials, Embankment

Statue of Keith Park, Waterloo Place

Day 3 – The capital’s premier museum for air warfare

Royal Air Force Museum, Hendon

Day 4 – Venturing beyond London

Biggin Hill Heritage Hangar, Kent

Chartwell Manor, Kent, the home of Winston Churchill for over 40 years

Other Battle of Britain sites you may visit independently

  • Statue of Hugh Dowding, St Clement Danes, London
  • Bomber Command Memorial, Hyde Park, London
  • Imperial War Museum Duxford, near Cambridge
  • Bletchley Park, near Milton Keynes
  • Kent Battle of Britain Museum and Memorial at Capel-le-Ferne, near Folkestone

Other unique private tours in Europe

FRANCE & BELGIUM

Reims: World War I and Reconstruction

  • Tour the city centre of Reims, reconstructed after World War I
  • Visit the site of German unconditional surrender in 1945
  • Fort de la Pompelle – A World War I fort with a superb museum

Beyond Reims I

  • Visit the historical interpretation centre of Suippes, near Chalons-en-Champagne, which commemorates World War I in the Champagne region
  • Finish your tour with a brief visit to the Main de Massiges trench network, followed by a detour via the stunning Gothic Basilica of Our Lady of the Thorn

Beyond Reims II

  • War and Peace in the French Ardennes, Novion-Porcien: Tour this brand-new museum, which provides a great introduction to the campaigns of 1870-71, 1914-18, 1940 and 1944!
  • Chemin des Dames – Visit the site of the last French offensive in 1917, including the impressive Cavern of the Dragon
  • Visit the Dormans national memorial, Bois Belleau and another superb museum in Meaux, on the highway to Paris

D-Day and the Battle for Normandy, 1944

  • The American beaches: Omaha, Utah, Pointe du Hoc – need one say more?
  • The Commonwealth sector: visit the legendary Pegasus Bridge and other iconic sites

Paris: The City of Light during the Dark Years, 1940-1944

Verdun: the meat-grinder of World War I

The Battle of the Bulge and the Ardennes

The Battle of the Somme

The World Wars in Northern France and Belgium

Art Nouveau & Art Deco in Northern France and Brussels

In the footsteps of de Gaulle: Lille, Paris & Colombey-les-deux-Eglises

Paris, Waterloo and London: In the footsteps of Napoleon and Wellington

BRITISH ISLES

Jersey, Guernsey & Sark: The Occupation of the British Channel Islands, 1940-1945

  • The best-preserved German fortifications of World War II, and a unique insight into an unusual chapter of history

Southern England

  • Bletchley Park: the home of the code-breakers (and, arguably, the most fascinating WWII museum in the UK)

FURTHER AFIELD

Berlin: Phoenix from the Ashes

The geography of Nazi tyranny: Berchtesgaden, Munich, Dachau, Nuremberg and Berlin

The martyrdom of Warsaw


Other projects I have been involved in…

  • British Heroes of the Holocaust Award, UK Department of Communities and Local Government (Cabinet Office) (2010)
  • John Nettles’ The Channel Islands at War, TV documentary (2010)
  • Tony Robinson’s ‘Walking through History’, Episode on The Channel Islands: Nazi Occupation, TV documentary (2014)
  • Strategic counsel for foundation of new Berlin-based business school (2014-2016)
  • Reims Tourism Authority, Development of marketing positioning on modern architectural heritage, 1919-1929 (2015-2016)
  • Occupation in the Channel Islands, Martin Randall Travel (2016)
  • Another Mother’s Son, feature film (script advice only) (2017)
  • Hitler’s England, ZDF History documentary, narrated by John Nettles (2017)
  • The Battle of Britain, Smithsonian Journeys (since 2018)
  • Picasso Project, National Gallery of Art, Washington DC (since 2018)
  • D-Day: A Journey from England to France, Smithsonian Journeys (2019)
  • German critical edition of the von Aufsess occupation diaries, undertaken by Professor Tobias Arand for Osburg Publishing (2019)
  • Special interest lecturer (Med, Baltic Sea, Norway, Russia) for SAGA, Fred Olsen and Viking cruises (since 2006)

I am also available to provide media commentary on a wide range of subjects, and from contemporary history to current international affairs. For details and fees, please enquire +33 6 72 51 26 91

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