The guide directory details all Guild Accredited Members. Each of these has passed our Accreditation Programme – so you can be sure they are all high quality guides and will give you a great tour!
You can filter by battle/campaign or country and then click on the name of an Accredited Guide to read their biography. Most Accredited Guides have contact details by which you can contact them directly. If not, or if you want to pass a message to them, please contact them via the Guild Secretary via our Contacts Page.
Many Guides can develop bespoke personalised tours and can research where particular ancestors might have fought or died. If you want to advice on following a particular ancestor and you have not identified a particular Accredited Guide, please contact the Guild Secretary. We guarantee we’ll have somebody that can help you!
Finally, this list shows only our Accredited Guides. Our Ordinary Members are not listed here and if you would like to check whether a particular individual is a member of the Guild, or for any other further help, please contact the Guild Secretary via our Contacts Page.
Accredited Guide Number: 8
I am a freelance guide, historian and heritage professional. After retiring after ten years in the army as a Royal Artillery Officer, I became increasingly involved in interpreting and presenting battlefield heritage for the Battlefields Trust and The Royal British Legion. My interest in battlefield touring was triggered by noticing that the part of Germany in which we were training in the 1980s had been a battlefield in 1757. I had always been interested in military history and both my father and grandfather had fought in the world wars.
I was an early supporter of the Guild of battlefield Guides and been part of the validation team, responsible for assessing guides’ competence, since 2008. I instruct on courses teaching battlefield guides and a Guide Co-ordinator for the Liberation Route Europe. My clients include include small and large groups, businesses as well as educational and of all sizes
In 2012 I was elected to the British Commission for Military History. My published work includes chapters in British Army Guide to the Western Front, and articles in military history journals. I write a military history blog www.theobservationpost.com
My interest and knowledge of military history stretches from Caesar to the Cold War and my guiding experience covers much of Europe. Besides the world wars and the Napoleonic era I am also interested in the mid C19th wars between Prussia, Austria and France and the Severn Years War.
I am writing the official history of the Normandy campaign for the Royal Regiment of Artillery and have battlefield guides to Artillery on the D Day beaches and the First Day of the Somme in publication. The artillery story of both world wars is a little neglected and I offer battlefield tours to tell the artillery story under the brand www.gunnertours.com
I have been privileged to support some of the British Army centenary staff rides as a subject matter expert alongside academic historians. My clients include many military units and headquarters. I run a website offering advice to military units planning staff rides, battlefield studies or realities of war tours. www.staffrideservices.com
The links between military and business strategy fascinate me. I offer a service to help organisations to learn from other people’s mistakes using examples from statecraft and military history. www.businessbattlefields.com
I chaired the Battlefields Trust from 2008-2015 and involved in many projects to preserve, interpret and present many of the Battlefields of Britain, including the re-discovery of the battlefields of Bosworth.
Accredited Guide Number: 84
Ewan’s particular interests are Leadership, the Realities of War and Close Combat, through the ages, but particularly the ‘horse and musket’ era. On tour, he believes in balancing depth of research with enjoyment.
He is a direct successor to Wellington’s McGrigor as Director General Army Medical Services. He set up and led the British Army’s Air Assault Medical Regiment and then commanded all of the Army’s Field Hospitals operating in Iraq and Afghanistan.
He was awarded an MBE for Squadron leadership in the First Gulf War and CBE for his direction of the Army Medical Services (AMS), at a time when the AMS achieved its highest battle casualty survival rate in history (halving the death rate).
A graduate of the Army Staff College and member of the Royal College of Defence Studies, his MA was on whether it is possible to create a strategy which endures. A Fellow of one of the Medical Royal Colleges, he is also an Apothecary and Freeman of the City of London.
Gregarious rather than combative by nature, he was surprised to be elected as President of the Combined Services Martial Arts Society by its members, and even more pleasantly surprised to win the first Worldwide Open tournament for renaissance sword & buckler at Hanover in 2010.
Accredited Guide Number: 94
Gareth has been a keen student of twentieth century warfare for many years. He served in the Royal
Tank Regiment for over 25 years and his military career included tours teaching at Sandhurst, the Land Warfare School, and the Joint Services Command and Staff College, as well as two tours in the
Ministry of Defence. He has an MA in Defence Studies from Kings College London.
Gareth now works as a Warfare Analyst, looking at current military challenges as well as helping people
learn from the past. He regularly leads group tours for schools and military units as well as highly
bespoke tours for individuals and families. His interests include command, learning, and technology;
the Great War in France & Flanders, Italy, and Palestine; Second World War combined arms actions of
1944 and 1945; and tanks – because a day without a tank is a day wasted. His first book, on tanks in
1917, will be published by Helion in 2021.
Accredited Guide Number: 26
Dudley Giles has been an active battlefield guide for over 25 years and was an early member of the Guild of Battlefield Guides.
A former British Army officer, Dudley managed, in a career spanning nearly 34 years, to serve a third of his time in North West Europe (Germany and Belgium), a third in the UK (including three residential tours in Northern Ireland) and a third in ‘exotic’ locations such as Afghanistan, Bosnia, Canada, Croatia, Kosovo and the flanks of NATO (Norway and Turkey). In 1990 he attended the Army Command and Staff Course, and, in 2001, was serving as NATO’s senior military police officer during the climactic events post 9/11. In 2006/7 he deployed to Afghanistan as General Richards’ senior police advisor and his last appointment in the Army before finally retiring in 2012 he was Deputy Provost Marshal (Army).
In 2006/7 Dudley found himself on the modern battlefields of Afghanistan and was able to help soldiers, diplomats and journalists understand the historical similarities between the present and past experience of British soldiers in that country. On his return he acted as the chief battlefield guide for the very first Help for Heroes Big Battlefield Bike Ride and continued to support the charity in that capacity until 2013. This experience eventually led him to set up a specialist touring company -‘Battlefields by Bike.
Dudley took his first degree in Law (LL.B (Hons) at the University of Leeds in 1979 and later a Masters Degree in British First World Studies (2010) – graduating with Distinction.
When not running his own tours or carrying out research, Dudley works as an independent contractor for schools, military groups, families and other battlefield touring companies.
Accredited Guide Number: 62
Ian Gumm is the founder and CEO of In The Footsteps, a leading independent battlefield tour operator, as well as a full-time battlefield historian and guide. He has led tours since 1998 and has visited the battlefield of the Norman Conquest, the Hundred Years War, the Napoleonic Wars, the Anglo-Zulu War, the First World War, the Second World War … and much more.
“Touring the battlefield is my passion, it is what I love to do and I feel extremely privileged to be able to escort people around the battlefields of the world visiting some of the most important historical sites that have shaped the world in which we live.”
Ian served in the British Army as a Reservist for thirty-six years during which time he commanded B (Rorke’s Drift) Company of the 2nd Battalion the Royal Regiment of Wales; commanded the Regimental Contingent at the affiliation parade with 121 South African Infantry Battalion (a Zulu Battalion) in South Africa; was the officer responsible for training all junior and potential officers in Wales and was the staff officer responsible for the First World War Centenary Commemorations for Wales.
His experience, gained both on the battlefield and with the British Army, allows him to add a soldier’s perspective and paint the picture of a battle on the canvas of the countryside. This enhances your tour experience, as Ian is not only able to impart an understanding of the history, but also a feel for the men who fought the battle and the ground over which they were fought.
“So whether you are ‘following in the footsteps’ of an ancestor or relative on a genealogy tour; ‘following in the footsteps of heroes’ on a more general tour or retracing the steps of a military unit or formation on a battlefield study or staff ride you can be sure that Ian will deliver an experience that will leave you with memories that last a lifetime.”
As an Accredited Member of the International Guild of Battlefield Guides, Ian endeavours to maintain the high standards, both in terms of service and good practice, that are commensurate with the Guild’s ethos. In addition to being an Accredited Member of the International Guild of Battlefield Guides, Ian is a member of the Western Front Association, the Last Post Association and a registered tour guide with the European Tour Operators Association.
As well as leading battlefield tours Ian delivers interesting and informative military history talks and presentations to professional organisations, businesses, clubs, societies and other groups, small or large.
Accredited Guide Number: 103
David Harrison served in the British Army for more 30 years. He has studied extensively the
Italian campaigns of the First and Second World War from his house in the Le Marche region
of Italy. You may wish to take a group to learn about the British involvement in the First
World Campaign in the north of Italy. British involvement was a consequence of the Battle of
Caporetto, and resulted with fighting on the Asiago Plateau and along the River Piave,
before the campaign was concluded at the Battle of Vittorio Veneto. Alternatively, you may
want to follow a relative’s involvement in the Allied Second World Campaign on Sicily, at
Salerno/Monte Cassino/Anzio, or against the Gothic Line.
David is able to provide a personal package to meet your specific needs. His NATO assignments resulted in close working relationships with colleagues from the main participants in the Italian campaigns (Canada, Germany, Italy, Poland and USA), and with his operational experience in Northern Ireland,
the Balkans and Afghanistan he is able to provide rare insights into the battles. He received his accreditation (Badge 103) from the Guild in January 2020.
Accredited Guide Number: 13
I just love understanding battlefields; their context, their geography, their nuances, their consequences and of course the people who were involved. How those potentially uncharted elements such as human character, climate, technology and fate made a difference. Somewhere in that mix is found an incredible story that defines the human condition in its most testing circumstances. Some failed and some succeeded and were honoured; some missed the umpire’s eye and went unrecognised. Some only knew their own 10 yard horizon and some left us the most telling descriptions of their battle experience; for example Private Louis Canler’s account of advancing with the 28th de Ligne in D’Erlon’s I Corps at Waterloo. I am just the person who for a small period of time has the honour to tell those stories with the benefit of hindsight; to engage, to draw empathy, to perhaps even send my customers home thinking differently. That to me is what historians in general, and battlefield guides in particular. should do – to use evidence to offer people the chance to see history in a different way, to challenge ‘lazy history’ and perhaps to allow people the room to think and perhaps change perceptions. Finally, I see battlefield visits as a shared social experience with customers and there is only one certainty – that somebody will add a strand of information or thought that will add to my knowledge; no battlefield guide knows everything! Some of my best tours have been with knowledgeable customers who have challenged, opined and engaged in debate which has proved to be stimulating for the whole group. Battlefield Guides should not be peddlers of history, but interpreters of events who listen and expand the tour experience. You can read about battles in your study but you cannot better understand them until you have been on the ground.
Accredited Guide Number: 51
In a military career spanning 36 years, Paul served in most of the usual hotspots, including three years in Ulster, plus the Balkans, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan and Iraq. Other appointments included running the MOD’s Africa team for three years, commanding a mountain and arctic warfare unit and a tour with the Gurkhas. With his military experience he is able to bring a soldier’s insight to battles of the past.
Paul was educated in Sheffield and at Victoria College, Jersey, where he became interested in the German occupation and fortifications. He ran his first tour in 1983 on the Somme and has been involved in WW1 and WW2 tours since. Paul is a member of the Western Front Association and Gallipoli Association. He joined the Guild in April 2008 and was presented with Badge 51 on 20th November 2010. He was heavily involved in the Guild’s support for Help for Heroes’ annual Big Battlefield Bike Ride from 2012, including leading the guiding team 2014-18.
In 1988 he co-authored Sheffield City Battalion in the Pals series. Cockleshell Raid was published in Pen & Sword’s Battleground Europe series in 2012 and Bruneval followed in 2013. He is currently writing a series of sixteen books, Victoria Crosses on the Western Front. The first was published in July 2014, since when six others have been released. The remainder will appear at regular intervals from late 2020 onwards.
Accredited Guide Number: 18
Brian Shaw is an Ex Warrant Officer in the Parachute Regiment who has been leading
battlefield tours for the past twenty years. Born in Nottingham in 1958 he joined the Army in
1974 as a Junior Soldier, progressing through a busy career specializing in Battlefield
Communications. Brian become a Warrant Officer Class 1 in 1995 and retired from the
Army in January 2013 after 38 years’ service.
Brian has had an extensive career serving across the globe, in Northern Ireland on operations
and from South Africa to the Arctic Circle and from California to Hong Kong, the long way
round, on training. This long Infantry experience and knowledge of tactics, give him a
soldier’s eye for ground and the implications of terrain on the weapon systems of any
Brian has a long-held interest in military history, particularly the Second World War. He
combines his own experiences and his knowledge of history to put his audience on a tour
within the experience of what the soldiers of the day saw, felt and experienced.
Whilst Brian’s passion is for the Second World War and specifically NW Europe 1944/45
(D–Day to the war’s end) but with a wide military history knowledge he is happy working with
groups on the battlefields of the Great War or others.
Brian has assisted in and personally planned and led tours on the Battle of Waterloo, The
Western Front, Gallipoli, France and Belgium 1940, Malta, the fighting in Normandy,
Operation Market–Garden, Aachen, the Hurtgen Forest, the Rhine Crossing (Plunder and
Varsity) and the Ardennes Offensive. Italy – Anzio and Cassino.
Accredited Guide Number: 38
Mike St Maur Sheil spent his career working as a photo-journalist in over sixty countries around the world. In 2005 he began a collaboration with the late Prof Richard Holmes, the renowned British military historian, documenting the battlefields of the First World War as they are today.
Since 2014 this work has been presented as a series of outdoor photographic exhibitions, entitled ‘Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace’, which have been viewed by an audience of over 10 million people in nine countries. In creating these exhibitions, Mike has visited battlefields and photographed places generally only mentioned in books and has thus acquired an extraordinary knowledge of the ‘battlescapes’ of the conflict.
In 2014 his photography was published by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission in their centenary commemoration book entitled ‘For the Fallen’ and, in 2016, the collection of his work, entitled ‘Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace’, won the accolade of the European Federation of Professional Photographers as the best book of landscape photography published in that year.
He has led numerous tours to the familiar British battlefields of Ypres and the Somme but his extensive knowledge of terrain has led to numerous tours of Gallipoli, northern Italy including the Dolomites and the Isonzo valley, the mountains of the Vosges, the Aisne and Marne and the Champagne regions of France.
Furthermore, in 2016 he was commissioned by the US National WWI Museum and Memorial to create an especial ‘Doughboys 1917-1918’ exhibition describing the American experience of the conflict which has given him an especial insight into the US involvement in WWI and the battlefields of Meuse-Argonne, Belleau Wood and the Marne.
Mike is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and a member of the British Commission for Military History and currently writing a Masters dissertation on the importance of the aerial photography in the development of Air Power in WWI.