© Michael St Maur Shell/Mary Evans Picture Library/Caters

Welcome to the International Guild of Battlefield Guides

Find a battlefield guide, join the Guild of Battlefield Guides.

Are you looking for a professional guide to take you on a battlefield tour? Are you working as a battlefield guide, would you like to find out more about becoming validated as a battlefield guide?

The International Guild of Battlefield Guides is the foremost organisation dedicated to touring the battlefields. We enable guides and historians to share information, expertise and knowledge; we help visitors to find accredited battlefield guides who can help them to explore the past. We all have one thing in common: a love of military history and a desire to ensure the sacrifices of past generations in war are not forgotten.

Our Honorary Members include Tonie and Valmai Holt, the pioneers of battlefield guiding, and our Guild President  is the award-winning historian and author, Dr. Spencer Jones.

 

Find a Battlefield Guide

Search for a battlefield guide. Find an accredited battlefield guide who can help you to explore the battlefields – search by campaign, battle, or country.

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Join The Guild

Find out more about the International Guild of Battlefield Guides’ Accrediation Progamme, and all the associated benefits of being a Guild Member.

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Coming Up

Guild Christmas Lunch 2022

A great opportunity to catch up at the end of the year; the Guild’s annual Christmas lunch will be held at the Union Jack Club, Sandell St, London SE1 8UJ (which is adjacent to Waterloo Station) on Friday 2 December.

The bar opens at 11.00 a.m. and members are asked to assemble for 12.30 for lunch at 12.45 when a three course lunch will be served.  The event is informal (lounge suits and equivalent for female members and guests) and offers members a convivial atmosphere to enjoy the company of others at the end of what is normally a long year of guiding.  The cost for the lunch this year will be published when known.

Full instructions will be sent to members and their guests joining the lunch in early November.

Members wishing to be attend should contact the organiser, Bob Darby (bobdarby@btinternet.com)

December 2nd, 2022 @ 12:30 pm - 3:30 pm

Annual Conference & AGM 2023

 
Our Annual Conference and AGM weekend will be held in the Leonardo Hotel (formerly Jurys Inn), Milton Keynes.  We will include the usual mix of activities - validation opportunities, Guild AGM (Saturday afternoon), Guild Awards Dinner, a quiz, bring-and-buy stall, and a range of speakers.  An overview of the event is here.
Those Members who had applied to attend the January 2022 Conference (which had to be postponed), and have already paid, need do no more, unless their accommodation requirements have changed, but Members who did not plan to go to that event, and wish to attend the January 2023 Conference, should complete this form and submit it to the Secretary by 21 November, with payment.
January 27 - 29, 2023 Milton Keynes

Guild Recce: “Wellington’s Way” – Peninsular War

‘Wellington’s Way’

“I am going to take a little sleep. Watch with your glass. You see that large stone? Call me when the head of the French column reaches that point.”

Wellington to Lord Fitzroy Somerset prior to his great victory at Salamanca, 22 July 1812

 

Recce Overview:

The intent of this eight-day reconnaissance is to familiarise ‘Guild mates’ with the ground, battle sequences, briefing stands and walking route options on Wellington’s battlefields. We will also consider the administrative support available in terms of accommodation, restaurants, emergency services, cash points etc. Some of us are experienced ‘Badged’ Members while others are just starting their association with the craft. We are here to educate ourselves by learning from each other and to share in the camaraderie that is the Guild!

We take in Peninsular War battle sites that tested Wellington’s army and himself personally during the middle years of the Napoleonic Wars. We look at various aspects of his leadership and his logistical challenge and most importantly of all the ground where the actual combat happened. The Peninsular War proved that a large army could not survive, and a small army could not win.

 

More details can be found here.

March 2 - 9, 2023

Guild weekend: Jersey – 2500+ years of military history

Preliminary Programme

The two-day programme over the weekend (starting on Friday evening and ending Sunday evening) will include battles and battlefields from:

  • The Hundred Years’ War
  • The War of the Roses
  • The English Civil War
  • 18th century wars (including American War of Independence, Battle of Jersey 1781)
  • WW2 and the German Occupation 1940-45 – particularly putting the Channel Islands into wider context of WW2 history

We will also see the very extensive British Napoleonic and 19th century era fortifications, in many cases used and adapted by the Germans.

There will be opportunities for members to take and assist in stands to supplement the local history with the wider historical context of the period/era.

We could have a group dinner together on the Saturday evening, and a traditional Guild quiz night, probably the day before.

 

Accommodation, costs and travel

We are expecting to procure a discounted group accommodation rate at the Merton Resort hotel -https://www.seymourhotels.com/merton-hotel . The daily B&B room rate for two sharing will be about £105, with single occupancy being slightly lower. Other costs will be advised in due course.

Flights are available from a number of UK airports, ferries from the UK south coast and from St Malo and Granville. Unfortunately, the schedules for airlines and ferries have not been published yet. The main local tourist website is www.jersey.com

Options

We are also aiming to organise optional activities and visits covering other battles, prehistoric warfare, naval engagements, and an afternoon on the range between Thursday (18th) and Monday (22nd) for those who may like to stay longer. Current ideas include:

  • Friday 21st - prehistoric warfare, archaeology/ history tour (Neolithic, Bronze and Iron Ages)
  • Thursday 18th afternoon/early evening – 20th century military firearms range event
  • Monday 22nd – boat trip (max 7 persons unless we can gather a flotilla of small boats (as Dunkirk & St Malo 1940!) – naval engagements, commando raids, fortifications from the sea and/or the Battle of Cezembre 1944 (this will be weather dependant)

Alternative activities and visits

Dependant on numbers, there is also a possibility to organise parallel non-battlefield/military history visits/activities for spouses, partners etc who might not ordinarily come on a IGBG event.

Expressions of Interest

Any members interested in going to Jersey in May 2023, please let Marc Yates know with numbers, sole/twin occupancy preferences and whether they would be interested in the optional activities / visits etc - email governance@gbg-international.com. A suggested reply form is here, and any information provided will assist in planning the detail and costing of the weekend.

May 19 - 21, 2023

Annual Golf Championships 2023

Every year the Guild of Battlefield Guides holds its Annual Golf Championships; more details nearer the time from Graeme Cooper

August 11th, 2023

Accredited Guides’ Annual Dinner

The annual Badged Guides Dinner will be held in London on 18 August 2023.  Further details from Graeme Cooper in due course.

August 18th, 2023 @ 6:00 pm - 10:30 pm

Normandy Recce

The Guild will be running a recce in Normandy in November 2023.  Dates are Friday 3 November to Sunday 5 November.  The aim is to cover the British and Canadian break out battles.  Please note the dates in your diary for now.

Full details will be available in the New Year and we will be asking for names then.

We are looking for three or more experienced guides to volunteer, one to lead each day.  Once we have the leads for each day or part of a day we can then pull the programme together.  We can split the days up between lead guides if we need to.

The general topics for each day are likely to be:

  • Day 1 – Op GOODWOOD, TOTALIZE and TRACTABLE.
  • Day 2 – Op EPSOM, Hill 112 and Villers Bocage.
  • Day 3 – Op BLUECOAT and Mount Pincon.

There is an option to do either Falaise, or Op COBRA and the Americans at St Lo, and if someone wanted to volunteer to do one of those we could drop one of the other topics.

If you would like to volunteer to take on one of the main topics as lead guide please get in touch with Simon Burgess on sfb22@hotmail.com.

November 3 - 5, 2023

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