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Monday, March 24, 2014

If you watch just one interview about the Great War make it this

This is quite something. It's a 1964 interview with Katie Morter, a mill girl from Manchester who married Percy at the beginning of the First World War, saw him recruited by the music hall star Vesta Tilley and then, when she was seven months pregnant with their child, got the letter from his company sergeant saying Percy had been killed.

I use the word "interview" but in fact it's a perfectly-delivered monologue. She tells you details only when you need to know them. She doesn't need the prompting of an interviewer to clarify anything. Her voice quavers occasionally but she doesn't break down. It's like being there.