“Remembering World War II”: a project of the Russian-speaking society of Cambridge

The Russian-speaking society of Cambridge announced the successful completion of the project “Remembering the Second World War”. It included a series of public events and the publication of a brochure with autobiographies of 15 veterans and 20 personal memoirs of family members of veterans who witnessed hostilities on the Western and Eastern Fronts.

Over the 20 years of their charitable work, the members of the society have managed to organize several public meetings with the participation of Russian and British war veterans. Brief autobiographies of veterans, accompanied by photographs and vivid memories of their participation in the Arctic convoys, are presented in the first part of the brochure “Veterans of the Second World War in Great Britain”.

The second part, “Living Memory”, is devoted to personal stories written by members of the Russian-speaking society of Cambridge: memories of the war years of family members of veterans, those who witnessed the Blitz bombings, served in the RAF or fought on the Eastern Front – on land, at sea and in the sky.

“We are sincerely grateful to everyone who helped us realize the publication of the brochure, including 15 veterans and members of their families, 13 KemRUSS members who shared their family stories, proofreader Beverly Lott, designer Maria Bestyuzheva and KemRUSS volunteers Elena Karl and Ksenia Afonina, authors and performers of this project. Special thanks go to the Cambridge City Council, whose VE-75 grant helped us print the brochures. “– says the chairman of the Board of Trustees of the society Ksenia Afonina.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the following events had to be held online:

– Recorded video congratulations on Victory Day from Captain Rolf Montif, WWII veteran (in May);

– Screening of the feature film “Franz + Polina” and an online discussion with the film’s director Mikhail Segal (in June);

– Virtual meeting with Russian veterans in Moscow, who were supposed to, but could not, come to the UK in May (August);

– Lecture by John Barber, Doctor of Historical Sciences, “Operation Barbarossa: The Turning Point of World War II” (in September);

– An evening of poetry from the Second World War with translator Maria Bloshtein (in October).

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