National Archives
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First World War diaries go online to mark centenary

Today The National Archives is making thousands of digitised First World War unit war diaries from France and Flanders available online.

The unit war diaries are among the most popular records from our First World War collection (file series WO 95) and the first in a series of First World War records to be digitised as part of our centenary programme - First World War 100.

Increasing access online

We have digitised around 1.5 million pages of war diaries so far, and will be releasing them throughout this year.

This first batch of unit war diaries reveals the real-time account of the first three cavalry and the first seven infantry divisions who were part of the first wave of British army troops deployed in France and Flanders, just over 300,000 pages in total.

William Spencer, military records specialist at The National Archives said: 'Making the First World War unit diaries available online allows people across the world to discover the daily activities, stories and battles of each unit for themselves.'

Search our unit war diaries.

Help us to tag our diaries

We have also launched Operation War Diary, an innovative online crowdsourcing partnership project between The National Archives, Imperial War Museums (IWM) and Zooniverse, which aims to unearth the details from within the diaries, using the same technology that has been used to map the stars.

Go straight to the website to take part in Operation War Diary now.

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