Second World War Project

We are delighted to have worked in partnership with The Museum of Cornish Life at Helston throughout 2021 on a national project developed by Imperial War Museums (IWM). This project saw both museums delivering a range of projects that uncovered lesser-known stories about Cornwall in the Second World War.


Alongside the opening of the Imperial War Museum’s new Second World War and The Holocaust Galleries in 2021, IWM’s Second World War and Holocaust Partnership Programme (SWWHPP) is working with eight cultural heritage partners across the UK.  We are lucky to be the South West partner on this national project along with the Museum of Cornish Life at Helston.  Thanks to this project we’ve been able to establish a Digital Internship post and carry out a major research project exploring Bodmin and Cornwall’s Second World War history and share it online and via community events during 2021.  This section of our website connects you to the research we’ve been doing and to exhibitions and online resources about the Second World War 

The SWWHPP is generously funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.


Our Regiment in the Second World War

The Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry (DCLI)

With many undergoing their basic training here at Bodmin Keep, as a regiment of the British Army, the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry played a significant role during the Second World War. Whether it be the 1st, 2nd, 5th or 30th Battalion, we remember them and their service.  

Find out more here
Black and white photograph of troops marching in a line outside Bodmin Barracks.

Our Military Site in the Second World War

Walker Lines Camp

Originally a Second World War military camp that housed thousands of British Army and U.S Army soldiers in the run up to D-Day, Walker Lines today looks like any other industrial estate. But look closely, and you will see clues to its fascinating history. At its military peak, there were 111 buildings on the camp including sleeping accommodation, latrines, a gymnasium and NAAFI stores.

Find out more here

Bodmin Hosts the Americans in the Second World War

The US Army in Bodmin

The US military played a vital role in achieving Victory in Europe, but it may come as a surprise that Cornish towns staged many of its preparations for the D-Day landings. With thousands of troops from the US Army’s 29th Infantry Division in particular, billeted in Bodmin between 1943-1944, we look back on the town’s role in “Operation Overlord”.

Find out more here
US Soldiers in Bodmin, Walker Lines Camp WWII

George Ellis Captures Bodmin in the Second World War

VJ Day in Bodmin 1945

Bodmin at War as You've Never Seen Before

Bodmin, like all towns was hugely affected by the impact of the Second World War, both from a military and civilian perspective. From the departure of the Regiment for military service, to the celebration of victory in 1945, the secrets and untold stories of Bodmin’s Second World War history can be uncovered in the George Ellis Photographic Collection. 

Find out more here

Ways to Explore our Second World War Stories


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