‘Jackie is online’

We wanted to interview Jackie to get her perspective about serving in the army for over 10 years, but she was unable to come down to London, so we arranged to interview her via Skype instead. The result is a bit rough around the edges but we got some great insights into the importance of tolerance in such a demanding profession.

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Enter the Guerkas

MB is a 79 year old retired Major of the British Guerka Regiment. He recently moved to Greenwich from Nepal and agreed to talk to us about his experiences serving in the Far East and guarding the Queen at Buckingham Palace.

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Meet Jamal

Our third interview took place with Jamal, a young Muslim from Greenwich who’s currently serving in the British Army.

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Alan tells us how it was

“As they drive away I wave until they disappear because we used to know in the war that might be the very last time you see them”

After growing up in a time filled with prejudice and discrimination – How do you learn to put down the pitch fork?

What do you ask the person who held post as Tank Commander at the age of nineteen in World War II? Ahead of our session with Alan Tizzard, Veteran and Chair of the National Service Veterans Alliance, the guys at Woolwich College brainstormed some questions to make the most of our time with him.

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Steve takes the Hot Seat

Today we kicked off the production of our film by interviewing our first veteran. Steve served in the army for over twenty years and had a lot to say about the reasons he joined up, the importance of service and his experiences during several campaigns. He also talked a little about the long history of contribution that ethnic minorities have made to establish the Britain we live in today.

The group asked their questions with sensitivity and professionalism and the result was 30mins of brilliant audio to go into our finished product. Obviously, we will only use a fraction of this for the finished film, but Steve gave us plenty of interesting stuff to get going with.

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Interview questions

So with ‘I am Britain’ well under way and our first session with Steve just around the corner, students from Woolwich College discussed what they’d like to find out .

They looked at what makes a good interview structure, as well as good ways to keep the interviewee relaxed in order to guarantee the best interview. The group came to the conclusion that a good technique is to start with general questions, to make the interviewee feel more comfortable.

Key Questions

Why did you join the armed forces, how did your family feel about you joining?

What was being in the army like? What were the people like?

Did you receive any medals? If so what do they mean to you? (Describe that feeling.)

What did you learn about serving? Why do you think this is important?

What don’t people know about the military?

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