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World War One camp to bring trenches to life

Taff Gillingham has submitted a planning application to build a World War I camp in Hawstead. The facility will include army style wooden huts filled with memorabilia and a network of trenches. 

Pictured: Taff Gillingham and Joe Frost in WW1 clothing

Taff Gillingham has submitted a planning application to build a World War I camp in Hawstead. The facility will include army style wooden huts filled with memorabilia and a network of trenches. Pictured: Taff Gillingham and Joe Frost in WW1 clothing

Plans to build an educational World War One Army camp in Hawstead could bring a slice of the Western Front to Suffolk.

Khaki Devil Ltd, a war history company, has submitted plans to build a World War One camp, complete with a network of trenches, at Brook Farm, in Bells Lane.

Plans include the renovation of an existing Victorian barn and the construction of a car park, a cafe and 12 timber huts for exhibiting military uniforms and memorabilia.

Military historian and Khaki Devil founder Taff Gillingham said the project would allow children to get a real feel of what it was like during the Great War.

He said: “We have had a trench site in Ipswich for more than 10 years now which we built for TV work and filming.

“During the time we have been inundated with requests for kids to come and have a look but it really isn’t designed for that.

“We have accumulated an awful lot of stuff, uniforms and items from the war, much of which wasn’t being used.

“The aim of the camp in Hawstead is to educate children about the war without having to send them abroad.”

Taff said he wanted to stress that the site would not be used for filming or noisy reconstructions, but was designed as a quiet site for educating and reflecting about life in the trenches.

“We are keen to show the story of how the trenches evolved,” he said.

“We want to show that they are not just holes in the ground.

“The site at Brooks Farm is perfect as it sits in a dip and there are no powerlines or anything modern around to ruin the magic.

 

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