Andrew Jackson's new history tells the story of the Great War as it was experienced by the men of the 11th Battalion, East Lancashire Regiment (Accrington Pals), the 158th (Accrington and Burnley) Brigade, Royal Field Artillery (Howitzers) and their families. Using information gathered from years of painstaking research in national and local archives and in private collections, he reconstructs, in vivid detail, the role played by these men on the Western Front. His book, which draws extensively on diaries, memoirs and letters, follows both infantry and artillerymen into the British army's bloodiest battles of the war, giving a graphic close-up view of their experiences. It is a moving record of the wartime service of a select group of local men during a time of unprecedented conflict.
Andrew Jackson was born and raised in Accrington and he has been fascinated by the story of the Accrington Pals since first visiting the battlefields of the Western Front in 1972, accompanied by Harry Bloor, one of the Pals who went over the top on 1 July 1916. He began researching the history of the Pals in 1980 and has been accumulating information about them ever since. He is the creator of the Accrington Pals website (www.pals.org.uk). From its inception in 1997, the website has grown to more than 280 pages. He has also created the one of the best Peninsular War websites: www.peninsularwar.org