By Luke MacGregor
How does one illustrate the centenary of a war that changed global history?
There is no way to truly relive or re-experience what people went through a whole century ago. The only thing I could think of was to try and draw a revealing comparison between people’s lives then and now.
I contacted a group of historical re-enactors who recreate the lives of soldiers in the Great War and attended some museum open days with them, watching as they publicly demonstrated various drills and period artifacts. But I wanted to go further than just seeing their uniforms. I wanted to show an interesting similarity between these men and the soldiers from 100 years before.
The men who served in World War One came from a vast variety of backgrounds; from bakers to bankers, salesmen to solicitors. Many of those who joined up were just school leavers. If they were fit enough and not too old, then they were sent to the front line.
I wanted to try to convey the huge range of men who served by photographing the historical re-enactors not only in uniform but also as they did their day jobs, which were also very varied.
As I went about my task, I was welcomed into the ranks of the historical, and now non-existent, regiments of “The King’s Royal Rifle Corps” and “The Queen’s Own (Royal West Kent Regiment)” as well as the lives of their officers and men.