Tyneham Village – the remote and seemingly idyllic Dorsetshire village, lost for ever during World War II but reborn, from contemporary photographs, and from the memories of those who once lived there.
In November 1943, as the Second World War raged in Europe, a tiny village near the Dorset coast was busy preparing for Christmas. Despite the conflict, the community had remained much as it always had been: the big house, church, school, post office and farms. And then a bombshell – the whole parish had to be evacuated within 28 short days to provide a training ground for the Normandy invasion. Despite promises to the contrary, the villagers were never allowed to return to live in their homes and today all that remains are a few deserted buildings and the precious memories of the last inhabitants.
Andrew Norman has gathered the recollections of one of these, Helen Taylor, who was a seamstress at Tyneham House, to help present a vivid portrait of what had been a thriving community, which now lives in the hearts of those who sacrificed their homes for their country.