Win a signed copy of Andy Reid’s incredible story, 'Standing Tall'

At about 0600 hours on Tuesday 13th October 2009, whilst leading a patrol in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, Corporal Andy Reid, 3rd Battalion, The Yorkshire Regiment, was blown up by a Taliban improvised explosive device (IED).

Airlifted back to the UK that evening to the specialist military wing of Selly Oak Hospital, it was ‘touch and go’ whether he would survive. He had lost both legs, the left one above the knee, and his right arm. His left hand had the index finger almost completely removed.

From there he went on to have a pair of prosthetic limbs fitted at the Defence Rehabilitation Centre at Headley Court. In 2010 he won the Sun Newspaper’s Military Award. Yet in between times he has cycled from Land’s End to John O’Groats, sky dived and made a number of appearances on behalf of service charities.

Even amongst those who have managed similar heroic recoveries his has been quite spectacular. His story demonstrates how, with patience, courage and determination, hope can triumph over despair. But, above all, it shows the ability of love and the support of friends and family to pull someone through the worst of times and experiences.

We have a signed copy of Andy's book up for grabs kindly supplied by John Blake Publishing Ltd.

Simply answer the following question:

What award was presented to Andy in 2010?

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Closing Date: Friday 28th February 2014. (Winner will be chosen at random and notified directly).

To view more information on 'Standing Tall' or to order a copy please visit:

Win a copy of the all new 'Land of the Sacred Fire' the latest addition to Gordon Doherty's Legionary series

Gordon Doherty is a Scottish writer, addicted to reading and writing historical fiction. His love of history was piqued during spells living and working close to both Hadrian's Wall and the Antonine Wall, sites of rich history winding back through thousands of years. The later Roman Empire and Byzantium hold a particular fascination for Gordon.

Here is an excerpt from 'Legionary: Land of the Sacred Fire':

The empire’s legions fled. They thundered westwards across the baking plain, the noon sun glaring down upon them like a Persian spy. Legionaries, Syrian archers, Armenian slingers and ironclad riders – more than thirty-thousand men all told, gaunt and bathed in sweat, armour battered and caked in dust. Their staggered and untidy formation betrayed great anguish. Each of them shot fearful glances over their shoulders as they jogged, parched tongues darting out over cracked and bleeding lips.

Near the front of the retreat, Comes Domesticorum Jovian led the Imperial Guard. He cut an impressive figure, broad and tall, his face ruddy and well-weathered. But his heavy brow shaded the fear in his eyes. It was a fiery terror that needled at his guts as he thought of those who pursued them. Don’t look back, he mouthed, fixing his gaze on the west. It offered only golden dust and azure sky, but soon they would be back at the eastern banks of the Tigris. Soon they would be reunited with the Roman fleet. Soon he would be safely aboard a bireme and then back in Roman Mesopotamia on the western banks of the river. At that moment, an image flashed through his mind; of the thousands of legionaries who had been slain on this wretched campaign, their grey, lifeless eyes fixed on him. In these last weeks they had fought and died in some of the most ferocious battles he had ever witnessed. They would never again feel the sun on their skin or the caress of their loved ones. Jovian, however, had barely sullied his sword on this journey. Yet here he was, dreaming only of his own well-being. He scowled at his timorous thoughts as self-loathing clutched and twisted his heart. He bit into his bottom lip until he tasted blood, then looked up to the figure riding just ahead.

Emperor Julian sat astride a white stallion, wearing a wreath that hugged his flaxen curls like a crown. He wore no armour – only pure-white robes and a sword belt. This epitomised the man. The one who had renounced the Christian God and revitalised the old pagan ways. The strident and fearless leader who had led the army into this burning land, intent on ending the centuries-old Persian threat. The legions loved him, hailing him for his seemingly endless courage. Julian was everything Jovian longed to be.

From where . . . from where do you draw your courage? Jovian mouthed.

But his envy faded when he saw something up ahead; the shimmering golden infinity now offered a faint, sparkling thread of turquoise. The Tigris! His heart soared momentarily, then he frowned, noticing something else; a dark smudge by the banks. The heat haze sharpened to reveal the last wisps of black smoke spiraling from the incinerated Roman fleet. Charred timbers, torn sails and smouldering masts jutting at all angles. Hundreds of vessels, utterly ruined.

Jovian slowed. The rest of the column slowed, jaws dropping as the tang of wood smoke danced in the stifling air. He shot glances around his imperial guardsmen, cooking alive in their scale vests. They gawped at the fleet, then twisted to behold the still and silent horizons behind them in terror. A chorus of panicked murmurs broke out all along the vast column. Eyes darted around the sweltering land, then all looked to the Emperor.

‘Emperor?’ Jovian gasped, failing to disguise the tremor in his voice. ‘The Persians did this?’

Emperor Julian stared solemnly at the sight, then gave the faintest shake of his head. ‘No, not the Persians.’

Horror shuddered through Jovian’s chest as he realised what had happened.

Emperor Julian continued; ‘I had no choice. When we set off from these banks, I gave the order to burn the fleet lest it fell into Persian hands.’

‘But how will we . . . ’ Jovian’s eyes darted to the far banks of the river. Safety lay in sight but out of reach, across the tumbling waters of the Tigris. This was not bravery, this was madness! The emperor’s hubris would be the death of them all.

Gordon is giving us a signed copy of his latest novel 'Legionary: Land of the Sacred Fire' to give away to one of our lucky readers. Simply answer the following question:

Why did Emperor Julian burn the Roman fleet?

Please sign in to enter this competition...

Closing Date: Friday 28th February 2014. (Winner will be chosen at random and notified directly).

Previous Competitions

Win a pair of tickets to The War and Peace Revival

The War And Peace Revival
RAF Westenhangar, Folkestone Racecourse
17th - 21st July 2013
Now celebrating its 31st year, War and Peace moves this year to RAF Westenhanger, Folkestone Racecourse from its old home at The Hop Farm in Kent. On from 17-21 July 2013, the exciting new venue will feature military and civilian re-enactors, living history, battle re-enactments and arena events, veterans, military vehicles, vintage entertainment, shopping, funfair and models - it's a great family day out!

Come and buy your finds in hundreds of trade stands where you can find anything from a button to a tank in the militaria stalls or browse the Vintage market place for your vintage/retro clothing, homewares and memorabilia! Wander the Vintage Village with its civilian displays from the 1930s - 1960s including Home Front, classic cars and support vehicles and much more - something for everyone whether you're into the military side or just the vintage living. Live music day and night gives a real festival feel to the world?s biggest military vehicle event. See hundreds of WW2 veterans and listen to their incredible tales or join us commemorating the 60th anniversary of the end of the Korean war and the 50th anniversary of the end of National Service.

Entertainment in the V Marquee will feature singers, entertainers, big bands, dancers and the beautiful burlesque performers. Take part in dance lessons then try out your moves in the evening in the vintage clothes you find in the trade stalls - not sure where to start? Then take inspiration at our fashion events.

Two ticketed events on Friday 20 and Saturday 21 July see the return of the fabulous Jive Aces and the John Miller Orchestra in a dine and dance spectacular! Tickets for these two events can be booked through 01304 813337! Public camping is available for those who want to join in the exclusive evening entertainment!

The new showground is just a couple of minutes off J11 of the M20 with ample parking. Mainline Westenhanger station is immediately next door ? and the High Speed train will be stopping during the weekend, just for the show! For those travelling from the continent, the Channel Tunnel terminus is 5 minutes away and Dover ferry port about a 20-minute drive.

Veteran, current serving military and group booking rates available - call 01304 813337 or visit for more details or to book.

To win a pair of tickets to The War and Peace Revival, answer the following question:

In which year did the Korean War end?

Closing date: Friday 5th July 2013

WIN a copy of SR-71, worth £25!

SR-71: The Complete Illustrated History of the Blackbird, The World's Highest, Fastest Plane, Zenith Press, £25 Hardback
ISBN 9780760343272
Out Now
Warfare has 2 copies of SR-71: The Complete Illustrated History of the Blackbird, The World's Highest, Fastest Plane to be won.

During its active service from 1964 until 1998, the Lockheed SR-71 set world records for being the fastest and highest-flying manned aircraft. It flew at more than three-and-a-half times the speed of sound, so fast that no other aircraft could catch it. Above 80,000 feet, its pilots had to wear full-pressure flight suits similar to what was used aboard the space shuttle. Developed by the renowned Lockheed Skunk Works, the SR-71 was an awesome aircraft in every respect, and it took the world by storm.

This new book draws on the first-hand experiences of US Air Force Colonel Richard H. Graham, a veteran of 15 years with the SR-71, to detail the inside story of the plane?s development, manufacture, modification and active service and is fully illustrated with over 200 spectacular photographs.

To win one of 2 copies of SR-71 simply answer the following question:

How many SR-71s were lost to enemy action?

a) 28
b) 0
c) 82

Closing date: 30 June 2013

Tonie and Valmai Holt's Prize Puzzle Picture

Major and Mrs Holt founded the first organisation to offer battlefield tours to the general public in the late 1970s. Since the 1990s they have been writing their series of guide books, incorporating all that they have learned from their experiences conducting thousands of people around battlefields. This series, designed to serve as companions for travellers, whether sitting at home or physically visiting the battlefields, includes detailed travel directions, military history, fascinating anecdotes and tourist information. The Holts share the writing of their books equally and conduct all their own research, spending many weeks on the ground as they prepare each new book or update previously published titles.

Taken together these guide books form the only authoritative source which locates over 1,000 memorials to Allied soldiers across France and Belgium in the two World Wars.

This picture was taken by Major and Mrs Holt while touring a battlefield somewhere. Identify the location of the photograph below to win a copy of Major and Mrs Holt's Battlefield Guide to the Somme, RRP £16.99.


WIN six adult tickets to the RAF Cosford Air Show worth £150!

Cosford Air Show 2013 We are offering three lucky readers the chance to win a pair of tickets to the Royal Air Force Cosford’s 75th Anniversary Air Show 2013!

The RAF Cosford Air Show will return this summer on Sunday, 9 June with an extravaganza of entertainment for all the family. Alongside the thrilling flying action, visitors will be treated to non-stop entertainment on the ground, with so many new things to see and do at the 2013 Air Show the experience will be breath-taking.

Whether a wide-eyed first timer or a seasoned air show enthusiast, the RAF Cosford Air Show brings together a wide variety of aircraft including the Royal Air Force, aerobatic displays, vintage aircraft, fast jets and many more. On the ground, enjoy expanded interactive aircraft and military exhibits, arena demonstrations, visit the fair ground, shop for craft and memorabilia, enjoy fine refreshments or visit the RAF Museum Cosford and its famous Cold War exhibition.

The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight This year’s themes include the 75th Anniversary of Royal Air Force Cosford with a special opening sequence flown by aircraft associated with the Shropshire base, the 75th anniversary of the Spitfire entering RAF service and 40 years of service from the Jaguar jet aircraft.

Experience first-hand the fantastic training the Royal Air Force provides with demonstrations from the specialisations of Aeronautical Engineering, Information and Communication Technology, Physical Training and Tri-service Photography, all part of the Defence School and training schools at RAF Cosford.

Aircraft confirmations include a number of historic aircraft including the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight and Avro Vulcan XH558 from the Vulcan To The Sky Trust, as well as the famous RAF Red Arrows. Others include the stunning aerobatic team The Blades and the RAF Tucano and Typhoon display teams plus many more provide a packed flying display lasting over 5 hours.

For those a little too young to join up, the RAF Air Cadets will be there to exhibit the many different opportunities available for teenagers with interactive displays, climbing walls and further information on how you and your children can get involved!


All profits from the RAF Cosford Air Show are donated to local and service charities in support of military personnel and their families.

For further details about what to see and do on the day and how you can get involved, please visit the website or call 0844 561 1897 (calls cost 5p per min plus network charges).

Question: Which anniversary is RAF Cosford celebrating this year?

a) 50 years
b) 75 years
c) 100 years

The answer is: b) 75 years

Congratulations to Kate Ruloff, Mr G Prosser and Adeinne Tonner - tickets to the RAF Cosford Air Show are on their way to you!



This photograph, taken at Ste Mère Eglise, shows the effigy of an American paratrooper named John Steele, of the 505th PIR of the 82nd Airborne Division. On the morning of 6 June, shortly after 0130 hours, some 13,000 airborne soldiers jumped from transport planes as they flew over Normandy. Steele fell onto the church steeple in Ste Mère Eglise where his parachute got caught and he hung there, pretending to be dead in order to avoid the German guns. He was later cut down and taken prisoner. More information about John Steele and Ste Mère Eglise can be found in Major and Mrs Holt's Definitive Battlefield Guide to the D-Day Normandy Landing Beaches .

Carl Cowlam



This Humber Scout Car plaque commemorates the Liberation of the small town of Veldhoven in Holland during the Market Garden Operation. It is on a bridge over the River Dommel. When the main column of XXX Corps was held up along the Corridor road scout cars of the HCR tried to find a way around to the west. They actually managed to reach the area of Woensel north of Eindhoven. More information is available in Major & Mrs Holt's Battlefield Guide to Operation Market-Garden [Arnhem], new updated and expanded version coming soon.

Kay Norton

All Hell Let Loose


Keith Melia and Ian Shaw



This should be easily recognizable for anyone who has been to the Somme. Clearly it is a German cemetery and is the one at Rancourt. The locale is unusual in that both British and French cemeteries are close by, as is the Souvenir Francais Chapel. More information is available in Major and Mrs Holt's Battlefield Guide to the Somme.

This cemetery contains 11,422 burials, of which 7,492 lie in a mass grave. The crosses are of grey stone, unlike the other Somme German cemeteries which have black metal crosses.

John Everett



This is the elegant memorial to the 1st Loyal North Lancs. The tall Greek pillar is on the Chemin des Dames and commemorates all members of the Battalion who died during 1914-1918.

The account of the action that took place in the area of the monument is included in Major & Mrs Holt's Battlefield Guide to the Western Front-South guidebook.

Just down the road is the grave of the twin brother of Captain the Hon Frances Octavious Grenfell VC.

Stephen Lawrence



This is the 'Devil Dogs' Fountain at Chateau de Belleau on the battlefield of the River Marne. The fountain stands in memory of the soldiers of the State of Pennsylvania who fell at Bealleau Wood, and this photograph shows a US Marine drinking from it.

Information about the fountain and the history of the surrounding area, see Major and Mrs Holt's Battlefield Guide to Western Front-South.

David Hall



Which actor played Eddard Stark in the TV dramatisation of Game of Thrones?

Answer Sean Bean

Archie Fitzgerald and Martin Stevens

Barnsley News from Barnsley Chronicle