Droitwich woman publishes her dad's First World War diary to raise funds for Armed Forces charity SSAFA - The Droitwich Standard
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16th Aug, 2022

Droitwich woman publishes her dad's First World War diary to raise funds for Armed Forces charity SSAFA

A DROITWICH woman has shared her father’s memories of the First World War to help raise funds for armed forces charity the SSAFA.

Frank Sidney Fisher served in the Royal Artillery and kept a diary detailing his experiences.

During lockdown his daughter Christine Dieppe asked her husband to put his diary onto paper and have it published.

He was the youngest son of a London family of four boys and joined up at the age of 17 because he did not want to miss out.

Frank fought in France, including at the Somme, and then in Italy in 1918.

Like many others, Frank kept a diary throughout until they went to Italy.

He was a keen artist and used to draw on night duty whilst manning the wireless.

Christine said: “He had a wicked sense of humour, and he would tell all these stories.

“He was a keen artist and even started drawings of the first tanks.

“He used to draw on night duty whilst manning the field telephones and, later, the wireless.

“His commanding officer went on to illustrate Winnie the Pooh and I think that is how he learnt to draw.”

Christine added he went through a lot during the conflict, including his best friend being killed.

“In his diary he talks about where he was fighting all the time although it stops at 1918, and we can’t find anything about his time in Italy.

“His mum was very lucky and all four of her boys returned home from the war.”

Frank’s wife was supported by SSAFA and Christine has kindly donated copies of the book to support additional fund-raising for the Armed Forces charity.

Christine said: “When my dad died, my mum was on her own.

“She had a stroke and needed to find a home.

“We had just had a new baby and didn’t have the space or the money.”

Someone suggested they contact the SSAFA and they had a visit from one of the charity’s volunteer.

After showing her dad’s medals to prove he was in the armed forces, SSAFA supported her mum for almost five years.

Christine added: “I am so grateful to SSAFA – they would come and see how we were doing and I got a letter from the charity when my mum passed away. “What a wonderful thing for people to do.”

Visit ssafastore.org.uk/products/diary-of-frank-sidney-fisher to buy Frank Sidney’s WWI Diary and support the armed forces community.

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