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Frederick Kelly was a remarkable man – a musician, composer and rower for both Henley’s own Leander Club and Great Britain at the 1908 Olympics – and one of many who died far too young in the Great War. His diary, Kelly’s War, covers the period from 1914-16 and is a detailed, movingly written account offering an insight into the Royal Naval Division, a group of sailors serving on land as soldiers. Formed by Winston Churchill, it included some of the most eminent scholars, thinkers, artists and athletes of the time – including Rupert Brooke, with whom Kelly was intimately acquainted and whose final hours he witnessed.

 

Broadcaster Mike is the founder of the Rupert Brooke Society and now author of Forever England, a fascinating account of the man who wrote his own epitaph: “If I should die, think only this of me: that there’s some corner of a foreign field that is forever England”.


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