John Harris

Accredited Guide Number: 82

John has been interested in military history since childhood. He comes from an extended military family and his early hobbies – modelmaking, wargaming and re-enacting – all allowed him to pursue his interest.

His involvement in re-enacting has taken him to battlefields across the UK, western Europe and the USA, and he has spoken to audiences of varying types, numbering up to 10,000 in one instance, about all aspects of conflict.

After a full-time career in Royal Mail, John took early retirement in 2012. His role as a senior manager with commercial and financial responsibilities gave him a keen awareness of the importance of customer satisfaction and ideas of value for money, concepts that are a key part of his touring offerings.

He has a BA (with First-Class Honours) in War Studies, completed part-time at the University of Birmingham and then the University of Kent while he was working.

Battlefield tour guiding has long been an ambition and John joined the Guild in 2015. He undertook training on the theory and practise of all aspects of guiding – the tour management side as well as engaging audiences in historic locations. He is proud to be a member of the Guild and to have been awarded Badge Number 82 in June 2017. In progressing towards the Badge, John was delighted to receive the Guild’s David Chandler Award for work he did on sources relating to the engagements of Lexington and Concord at the start of the American War of Independence.

John is a freelance guide and a keen motorbike rider. He specialises in set and bespoke motorbike tours of First World War and Second World War sites, the former including Ypres and the Somme, the latter relating to the May 1940 campaign, Normandy and the Battle of the Bulge. He is equally happy to guide those who prefer to travel on more than two wheels.

As well as the World Wars, John has a keen interest in eighteenth- and early nineteenth- century warfare, particularly during the Seven Years’ War, American War of Independence and Waterloo campaigns.

Battles

American War of IndependenceWWI7 YearsWWIINapoleonBattle of the SommeBattle of the BulgeYpres

Countries

United States of AmericaBelgiumWestern EuropeEuropeNorth AmericaFranceGermany

Caters For

Adult Coach GroupsIndividualsMotorbike GroupsSchool GroupsSmall Groups

Areas of Expertise

Wars covered:

  • First World War
  •  Second World War
  • American War of Independence.

Areas of expertise:

  • Ypres Salient, 1914-1918
  • Battles of the Somme
  • ANZACs in WW1
  • German invasion of France and the Low Countries, May 1940
  • Battle of the Bulge