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57707: John Barnard looks out across the Vale of Evesham to the Bredon hills, drawing by Mike Barnard

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posted on 2024-02-23, 22:57 authored by Great War Archive Project Team

Artist's impression drawn by Mike Barnard of a story his father John Barnard used to recall.

When John finally arrived home after his service during the First World War he was so disoriented that he left Evesham station late at night and turned the wrong way for Badsey, his home, about 3 miles away. He was put in the right direction by someone, and as he walked over the fields and lanes he looked over the Vale of Evesham in the moonlight and vowed never to leave Badsey again.

Unfortunately he had had a hard time during the war. He had been over the top many times, and was in many burial parties “ ("the things he saw were nobody's business!" Mike Barnard, John's son). Frequently he would wake up screaming, sometimes shouting out pals' names. He relived experiences in his sleep. He would be found sleep walking over the fields, wandering the ground around his home village of Badsey in the middle of the night.

He married in 1926, and gradually these nightmares subsided, but his son Mike can remember them happening during his childhood. In one of the battles he took part in 22,000 were killed - yet John survived - although forever haunted by his experiences.

Part of a collection relating to Lance Corporal John Barnard (52258 Worcestershire regiment), market gardener of Badsey near Evesham; and his son Mike's drawings and newspaper articles relating to the First World War.

History

Identifier

8287.jpg| GWA_7392_office00040.jpg|

Creator

Barnard, Michael

Subject

Barnard, John

Date

1919

Date Created

01/01/1919

Temporal Coverage

31/12/1919

Source

Leaf

Medium

Paper

Type

Drawing

Contributor

Alun Edwards | Alun Edwards | Mike Barnard

Rights

The Great War Archive, University of Oxford / Primary Contributor

Publisher

The Great War Archive, University of Oxford

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