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World War One Buxton Personalities 100 Years on

Welcome to the Buxton Branch of The Royal British Legion

VERA MARY BRITTAIN, 
1893-1970

 

Vera Brittain grew up in Buxton. She’s the author of Testament of Youth. The book tells the story of the loss of her family and friends during World War One. 

Vera was living in Buxton when war broke out; she began her training as a nurse at the Devonshire Hospital in Buxton, before later transferring to London. In the book she blames the town for a sense of snobbishness that never deserted her. She also describes it as a prison. 

Vera Brittain’s brother, Edward, died during the war ( Who's name is on the Buxton War memoria).

Her fiancé Roland Leighton also lost his life in the conflict. She left Buxton in 1915 to work in London as a voluntary aid detachment (VAD) nurse, and never returned to the town. 

Vera

 

To My Brother (In Memory of July 1st, 1916)

 

Your battle-wounds are scars upon my heart, 
Received when in that grand and tragic 'show' 
You played your part, 
Two years ago, 

And silver in the summer morning sun 
I see the symbol of your courage glow -- 
That Cross you won 
Two years ago. 

Though now again you watch the shrapnel fly, 
And hear the guns that daily louder grow, 
As in July 
Two years ago. 

May you endure to lead the Last Advance 
And with your men pursue the flying foe 
As once in France 
Two years ago. 

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