Got this from Edward Lucas.
At the Wojtek event in Edinburgh there were reflections that all this interest is too late.. I say better late than never.
greetings from Sunny Krakow
Commemorations around the 70th anniversary of the invasion of Poland by Nazi Germany have led to unprecedented public interest about Polish forces’ contribution to Britain’s war effort. In order to ensure that veterans’ stories are recorded, a general appeal has now been issued across the UK for former members of the Polish Armed Forces – and others who have memories of them - to come forward with their own first-hand accounts of World War II.
The Polish veterans ‘last campaign’ launched on 1st September to ensure that Poland’s contribution to Britain’s war effort is remembered. It has gained wide exposure with coverage in the Times, Guardian, Daily Telegraph, Daily Express, Daily Mail, BBC News and the World Service, as well as a host of Polish media and websites.
The culmination of the campaign is on 19th September when the world’s media will join the UK’s senior Royal, military and political establishment and the last remaining Polish veterans to witness the dedication by His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent of the first official war memorial to Polish forces in the UK at the National Memorial Arboretum.
Dr. Marek Stella-Sawicki, Chairman of the Polish Armed Forces Memorial said today: “We have been overwhelmed by the response to our campaign so far and are looking for more veterans and members of the public to come forward and retell their experiences about the Polish forces in World War II.
“This month we published a book called “First to Fight” and, based on the huge number of first-hand accounts that have since been sent in spontaneously, we are already planning a second edition.”
Polish veterans were profoundly shocked to find young people in the UK asking whether Poland fought alongside Nazi Germany in WW2. The book has been published to ensure that Poland’s contribution to Britain’s war effort is remembered. It recounts Poland’s epic six-year struggle – with some historically significant texts being published for the first time, such as the English translation of Stalin’s signed order to execute 14,736 of the Polish officer corps at Katyn Forest in 1940.
Dr Sawicki concluded: “With the book’s publication and the unveiling of the Polish Armed Forces Memorial, the last remaining veterans now know that their struggles, and those of their departed comrades, will be duly remembered in Britain for generations to come.”
People are asked to send their stories, along with full contact details, to:
Polish Armed Forces Memorial Committee
c/o The National Memorial Arboretum
Or to: michaelmoszynski@...
For further information please contact:
Dr. Marek Stella-Sawicki, Editorial Director "First to Fight" and Chairman, Polish Armed Forces Memorial Committeedrmarksawicki@...
T: +44 (0) 7834 583 206
Michael Moszynski, Advisermichael@...
T: +44 (0) 7968 063 155