In 1939 when he volunteered for service in the Royal Air Force, young Griff Evans, then an employee of Commer Cars in Luton, had no way of knowing what life held in store for him and in this enjoyable memoir he recalls his subsequent adventures as an RAF airman during the Second World War, serving in the UK and overseas.
Since his occupation was considered war work he was not due for immediate call-up so decided to join the Home Guard in the meantime, thus becoming one of just three members of Commer Cars Home Guard, whose job it was to guard the factory at night.
In 1941 he joined the RAF and, after initial training, was posted to No.2 OTU RAF Wellesbourne to under-take guard and gunnery duties. It was here, in February 1942 that he became one of the first members of the newly-formed RAF Regiment.
Brief postings to Douglas on the Isle of Man and Evanton in Scotland followed, along with more gunnery training. Next came spells at RAF bases at Wickenby (Lincs), Tuddenham (Suffolk) and Pembroke Dock (Wales), after which he was selected for overseas service and in due course found himself bound for France in late June 1944.
After landing at ‘Gold’ Beach, over the following weeks and months his unit worked its way steadily across France, Belgium, Holland and into Germany, having many adventures on the way.
While in Germany, his unit was sent to assist at the recently-liberated Concentration Camp at Belsen, where they witnessed at first-hand the aftermath of the atrocities committed there and heard horrific tales from former inmates.
All this and more is described in this remarkable wartime journal.