Battlefield Tour Guides
Should you wish a guide to join your tour, CGT Battlefields have a great team of guides, who have been carefully selected to escort our tours. Allowing you to discover and understand the politics behind these wars, the experiences of those involved, the realities of conducting operations and the tactics employed, right through to the final inevitable outcomes.
Our guides are all subject matter experts from a wide variety of backgrounds. Approachable and happy to answer any questions you may have, they offer structure and guidance to the tour in order to provide the maximum benefit to the group. Their passion for the sites and conflicts that took place is clear, their knowledge immense, which means that they fully incorporate the group in the experience through their great skill of storytelling and bringing the past to life.
Guiding throughout the battlefields of Europe and beyond, we have the right guide for your group and you can meet some of our guides below.
Allan Wood BSc (Hons)
After serving 22 years as an armoured soldier in the Regular Army serving in UK, Germany, Canada and NI Allan became a History Teacher, whilst continuing to serve in the TA for a further 8 years. Whilst in the TA he began guiding tours to the battlefields and has done so for 17 years guiding military, civilian and school tours. He retired from teaching in August 2014, in order to give battlefield guiding and giving talks on military history his full attention.
Allan is a Member of the Guild of Battlefield Guides and holder of Badge number 66. He has always been interested in military history, something inherited from his father and indeed grandfather who served during the First World War. He has guided many tours to the Western Front, the NW European Campaigns of World War 2 and Waterloo and especially enjoys tours focussing on the role of the cavalry or armour in both World Wars and the part played by the ANZACs during The First World War in Europe.
Bob Darby served as a soldier in both the British Army and in the service of HM Sultan Qaboos the ruler of the Sultanate of Oman, where he spent 6 years as a contract officer.
Operational experience included service in Northern Ireland and the Falklands. He was the Air Adjutant of 3 PARA during Op Corporate, the re-possession of the Islands from Argentine control and served with the Parachute Regiment both as a non-commissioned and commissioned officer, an association of which he is particular proud of.
'The army gave me the opportunity to travel the world and in some cases to look at the battle sites of yesteryear, which fuelled my interest in becoming a Battlefield Guide'.
As a Veteran of the Falklands campaign he has taken a number of tours 'Down South'. In addition he has guided military tours on to the battlefields of the Great and Second War at Battle Study and Staff Ride levels.
After soldiering he ran a successful Financial Services practice but has now taken semi-retirement in order to focus on leading and guiding battlefield tours.
Bob lives in West London with his wife Jill and their two children.
Brian Shaw is an Ex Warrant Officer in the Parachute Regiment and has been leading ww1 and ww2 battlefield tours for the past eighteen years. He joined the Army in 1974 as a Junior Soldier, progressing through a busy career and specialising in Battlefield Communications. Brian became a Warrant Officer Class 1 in 1995 and retired from the Army in January 2013 after 38 years' service.
Brian has had an extensive career serving across the globe. From Northern Ireland on operations and from South Africa to the Arctic Circle and California to Hong Kong the long way round on training. This long Infantry experience and knowledge of tactics, gave him a soldier's eye for the ground and the implications of terrain on the weapon systems of any chosen period.
Brian has had a long held interest in military history, particularly the Second World War and combines his own experiences and his knowledge of history to place his audience on a tour within the experience of what the soldiers of the day saw, felt and experienced.
Whilst Brian's passion is for the Second World War and specifically NW Europe 1944/45 (D-Day to the wars end), he also has a wide knowledge of military history and is happy working with groups on the battlefields of the Great and other Wars.
Brian has led and assisted in tours to Gallipoli and Italy (WW2) and has personally planned and led tours on the battle of Waterloo, the fighting in Normandy, Operation Market Garden, Aachen, the Hurtgen Forest and the Ardennes Offensive.
Brian was awarded his guild badge from the patron in November 2005 and is very proud to be a member of guild.
Colin spent some 30 years in the Regular Army as an Infantry Officer in The Duke of Edinburgh's Royal Regiment and a short time in The Royal Gloucestershire, Berkshire and Wiltshire Regiment.
He served in Malta, Germany (Including SO2 G2/3 in a Mech Bde HQ and Rifle Coy Comd), N Ireland, Cyprus (SO2 HQ UNFCYP), Canada (Exchange Officer at the Canadian School of Infantry) and Ghana (DS at the West African staff college) and also commanded The Depot Prince of Wales Division. On leaving the Army Colin worked as the Deputy Chief Executive to the Reserve Forces and Cadet Association (RFCA) in the South East. He has always been interested in Military History and has conducted tours to many of the European Battlefields including both WW1 and WW2.
Although from a family with strong connections with the RAF and RAAF Duncan's mainstream career has been in accountancy and finance. However, having gained an MA as an external student of the War Studies Department at RMA Sandhurst under the supervision of Professor Gary Sheffield he began guiding battlefield tours in 1999. Duncan's particular interest is in the First Wold War, although he has also had the privilege of guiding tours to Berlin, Munich, Nuremburg and Eastern Europe.
He is a member of the Fortress Study Group and is one of the principal guides used for the Government's World War 1 Centenary Battlefield Tours programme for schools being run by University College London, with the assistance of the Army.
Duncan runs his own business, which provides training courses and training consultancy for aspiring expert witnesses and divorce lawyers, he also conducts investigations into asset tracing, fraud and economic loss.
His wife is originally from the Ypres area and they have a flat in the town for their frequent visits, both are keen supporters of Talbot House in Poperinge and the numerous events and festivals that take place in Ypres, their home is in rural Suffolk.
After leaving school Eugenie worked at the HQ of the Commonwealth War Graves Commssion. However, her ambition was to join the Metropolitan Police and she served for a total of 33 years, retiring in 2014. Eugenie served in the Traffic Division, dealing with all types of incidents. On promotion to Sergeant she transferred to Heathrow into the Firearms Team and after five years moved to the Royal Protection Department, during this time also serving in the RAF Reserves.
Visiting the battlefields of the Western Front since her childhood, her father was a decorated spitfire and hurricane pilot and his father, was an Old Contemptible who served with distinction in the First World War, she has had a lifelong passionate interest in both World Wars.
When not touring on the battlefields, Eugenie enjoys motorcycling - sometimes to the battlefields! Going to the gym, watching ruby and socialising.
Gary is a serving member of the RAF, having joined in 1984 and to date he has seen service in the UK, Germany, the Middle and Far East.
Having always been interested in military history he has been fortunate enough to lead tours to Malay, Singapore, Oman, Germany, France and Belgium and is an avid collector of all military memorabilia.
Gary is an enthusiastic football fan and skier.
John retired from the Army in 2014 after 37 years regular service in the Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters Regiment and their successors, the Mercian Regiment. He has served all over the world including operational service in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan. He has been leading battlefield tours since 1994 and has guided military groups, veterans, schoolchildren and others. He has been lucky enough to guide tours from Singapore to Stalingrad and from Tanzania to Tunisia.
As battlefield tours have been largely replaced by staff rides and battlefield studies within the Army, he has become heavily involved in producing Tactical Exercises Without Troops (TEWTs) based on battles of the past that can be "refought" over the actual ground. John has led tours to the battlefields of the American War of Independence, the Peninsular War, the Crimean War, the Great War, the Spanish Civil War and the Second World War.
He is a member of the Western Front Association and a trustee of the Sherwood Foresters Museum. He joined the Guild in its infancy (Member Number 4) and was awarded Badge Number 10 in 2004. He has organised and continues to organise events for both the Guild itself and the Midlands Chapter of the Guild and is a long time member of the Guild Validation Team. He has been appointed lead volunteer curator of the Nottinghamshire Great War Centenary Exhibition (The Trent to the Trenches) and is already working on this wide ranging, interactive event that will be centered on Nottingham Castle.
Born and educated on Jersey in the Channel Islands John now lives in Somerset where he writes full time for Historical Features. Having served for six years in the Grenadier Guards with two tours to Northern Ireland as well as being deployed to Belize and undertaking other security duties. On leaving the army he worked as a security consultant and began writing in his spare time. Later this developed as he contributed to more publications. Today he writes regular features for several leading publications, both in the UK and the USA, all of which focus on military history.
John to date has written 18 books on a range of subjects from weaponry to medieval warfare. He has a comprehensive range of military photographs which are often used to illustrate projects for various publishers. During the mid-1990s he began working as a battlefield tour guide and has escorted many groups to battle grounds such as Arnhem, the Somme and Normandy. John has had the privilege of meeting many veterans whilst undertaking this field of work.
Jon Wort BSc TD
Jon Wort was born in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and is the third generation of his family to have served in the British Army. Jon's Grandfather served in the First World War with the Royal Engineers, his father in the RASC and REME during the Malayan Emergency and Jon in the Duke of Edinburgh's Royal Regiment (Berkshire and Wiltshire) during the Cold War.
Jon was educated at Kimbolton School, Cambridgeshire before studying Zoology at Bangor University, North Wales, prior to commissioning at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst. During his service Jon served as a mechanized platoon commander in Germany before becoming the Regimental Signals Officer in Northern Ireland. Further tours included; Adjutant 1 WESSEX and Company Commander in Northern Ireland and Hong Kong before leaving to pursue a career in the Health Insurance sector.
Jon continued his military service as a Territorial Army Officer commanding a rifle company, serving as an assessor at the Army Selection Board, Westbury and more latterly as a staff officer with HQ 43 (Wessex) Brigade and HQ 1 Artillery Brigade and Southwest. He is still serving having completed the Advanced Command and Staff Course in 2015.
Jon established Resilient Training and Consultancy Ltd, which specialises in crisis management and civil emergencies and has worked extensively at the Strategic, Tactical and Operational levels. His training has harnessed this expertise to deliver training, especially at the Strategic Level for the States of Jersey, the Isle of Man and the Bailiwick of Guernsey and has a continuing passion for training and education, whether in the classroom or in the field.
Jon has had a lifelong interest in Military History, which has led to him collecting cap badges from the founding regiments of the Duke of Edinburgh's Royal Regiment (the 49th, 62nd, 66th and 99th of Foot through to the Royal Berkshire Regiment and the Wiltshire Regiment). Jon has had the privilege to have taken veterans from the 14th Army back to Burma to visit; Moulmein, the Arakan, the Chindit areas, Mandalay and Maymyo. He has also led tours to India to visit the battles of Kohima and Imphal. In addition to veteran tours Jon has guided school tours and Army recruits to the Western Front, and Normandy. He has also led tours to Crete and Waterloo.
Jon is currently the chair of the Wiltshire Armed Forces and Veteran's Committee, which organizes the annual Armed Forces and Veteran's weekend in Trowbridge at the end of Armed Forces week each year. Jon is an ardent collector of cap badges and military history books and his library catalogue can be found at: www.librarything.com/catalog/Tofrek
Jon is married to Sue, who is a magistrate. He has two children Georgina and Lawrence and is happy on the touchline living his rugby vicariously through Lawrence. He lives in Wiltshire.
Johnny Walker OBE
Johnny has been guiding for over nine years, his areas of speciality are the Western Front (Ypres, the Somme and Vimy Ridge) and WW2 (Normandy D-Day 1944) and it has been his privilege to escort, soldiers, schoolchildren and veterans to these areas.
He was a career soldier in The Duke of Wellington's Regiment, a West Riding Infantry Regiment, before retiring at the rank of Brigadier. On retiring from the Army he worked as a Regional Manager of 13 Counties in The Royal British Legion and he is an associate member of the International Guild of Battlefield Guides.
Mike served with the Royal Signals for 40 years. His early service was “mainstream British Army of The Rhine” but he was then fortunate to have a number of appointments in the Middle and Far East including Loan Service in the UAE. His final overseas tour was in the Republic of Korea, where he was a member of the UN Military Armistice Commission, and Assistant Defence Attaché in the British Embassy, Seoul.
Having always taken a keen interest in local military history wherever he has served, for the last 12 years Mike has worked as a battlefield guide specialising in the Western Front, Normandy, Berlin, Crete and Korea.
Paula Kitching MSc
Paula is a historian and writer and has spent most of her professional life working in education. For over 16 years she has been a guide for battlefield tours and has been fortunate enough to have taken groups right across Europe to many locations including Ypres and the Western Front. Paula is a member (associate) of the International Guild of Battlefield Guides and has also spent time training other guides to work with young people.
Her specialisms are war, genocide and cultural diversity, and she has worked with and recorded the testimony of British ex service personnel from a variety of conflicts, and Holocaust, Bosnian and Rwandan genocide survivors. Paula has worked as a freelancer for over 15 years, during which time she has been an advisor to a government department for five years, worked as an education consultant for six years to the Royal British Legion, and written for various charities and historical bodies. In 2015 she was awarded an Honorary Fellowship from the Historical Association.
Paul served for 22 years in the British Army having joined the Army in 1987 as a young Infantry Soldier, he then went onto specialise within the Royal Army Medical Corps.
He served around the globe, completing military operations in Northern Ireland, The Balkans, Africa and the Middle East. Whilst serving with the RAMC he passed the Black Serpent selection course to work with UKSF providing Role 1 and Role 2 Med Support.
Paul completed four postings as an Instructor at Recruit Depot, training Infantry recruits, Other Arms soldiers and Territorial soldiers. His knowledge and experience in turn, underpins his delivery whilst conducting Battlefield Tours.
Having always had an interest in military history, particularly the First World War, he has been leading Battlefield Tours for the last eight years, using his knowledge and experience to bring to life the stories of the soldiers, the time, place and their experiences.
He has planned and led tours with soldiers, students, adults and corporate clients to many locations including The Western Front (Ypres Salient, Somme battlefields, Cambrai, Loos, Arras, Vimy Ridge and Verdun), Normandy and the Atlantic Wall, Berlin (Nazi Germany and the Cold War), Poland and Auschwitz.
Phil spent 25 years in the Regular Army as a Transport Specialist in the RCT and the RLC, serving in the UK, Germany, Northern Ireland, Middle East and Bosnia. Having left the Army in 2002 to work in the Training Sector, on Apprenticeships and NVQ across a broad spectrum of disciplines, the draw to the green remained and he quickly re-joined and is still serving as a Reservist Officer as Bn 2IC.
Currently he runs his own consultancy company, which specialises in transport and engineering training for Apprentices.
Having always been interested in military history since a very early visit to the Menin Gate as a young soldier, he took up guiding with family and friends in the late 1990’s. Moving onto more formal tours around 1998, he has been fortunate enough to have led tours to Italy, Sicily, France, Holland and Belgium.
In his spare time, he enjoys endurance walking and watching Rugby, with a secondary hobby of the grandchildren.
For the past 20 years Richard has been extensively researching the Great War and the effect it had on his home county of Wiltshire. He has written six books on the subject, the script for an award winning film and has produced and curated a number of exhibitions for museums. In 2014 he designed the Wiltshire Wall of Remembrance project for Wiltshire County Council.
Richard gives talks and lectures to groups of all ages and regularly takes tours of small and large groups to France and Belgium. He has an exceptional knowledge of the Somme, Cambrai, Neuve Chapelle, Loos, Arras, Vimy, Verdun, Passchendaele, Ypres and Messines and has also led tours to Normandy and designed and curated WW2 and D-Day exhibitions for museums.
A regular contributor to radio, Richard also runs the Wiltshire Soldiers Website and was a Founder of Finding the Forgotten and has been personally responsible for the commemoration of 12 soldiers both in England and France.
Originally commissioned into The Gordon Highlanders, Rob served for twenty years as an infantry officer in the British Army. This included tours at regimental duty and staff at brigade and divisional levels. Seeing operational service in Northern Ireland, Iraq, Sierra Leone and Afghanistan. His last tour was in an advisory team to the Afghan National Army kandaks fighting in Helmand.
As a civilian, he has worked in West Africa as a security sector reform consultant to the UN; then as a humanitarian programme manager and operations director on programmes reducing the negative impacts of rogue ex-combatant groups, small arms, ammunition and unexploded ordnance in vulnerable and conflict-prone communities.
Rob has a Masters degree in Military Strategic Studies and is a graduate of the Italian Joint Forces Higher Command and Staff College. An accredited battlefield guide with the International Guild of Battlefield Guides, he has had a lifelong interest in military history and brings this, along with his military and academic background, to guiding.
Trevor served with the RAF for 37 years and rose through the ranks serving as a Medical Secretarial Officer at various Units including, Hospitals, Joint Service Headquarters, NATO and the Ministry of Defence in London. His last post before retiring as a Squadron Leader in 1999, was as Officer Commanding Defence Services Medical Rehabilitation Unit, Headley Court.
His interest in Military History began whilst serving in the Middle East in the 1960's and developed from there into researching and visiting Battlefields and Historical Sites during postings to Europe, the Middle and Far East. He has worked as a Battlefield Guide since 2000 and has vast experience of guiding tours to many of the Battlefield Sites from The Battle of Hastings 1066, World War 1 and 2, through to Berlin and The Cold War 1945-1989.
He has had the honour to guide many Battlefield tours including Army and RAF Regiments, Regimental Associations and Senior Officer Staff Rides.
Interested in joining us? CGT are always looking for experienced guides to join our team - please email a copy of your current CV to firstname.lastname@example.org