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Open Access 'We Will Never Forget You': Christian Charities and the Rehabilitation of Disabled ex-Servicemen in Inter-War Leeds

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The unprecedented number of disabled ex-servicemen is one of the evident, but often forgotten, legacies that the First World War left to Britain. For these men, and the organisations created to rehabilitate and reintegrate them back into civil life, the war did not end with the 1918 armistice. By using parish records, this paper will argue that disabled veterans were largely forgotten by religious charities within inter-war Leeds, despite attempts made by clergymen to help servicemen during the war. The impact that this had on male and religious identity is also examined, as any help available disappeared with distance from the conflict. This lack of Christian aid in Leeds challenges the wider historiographical perspective that the Great War favourably altered social attitudes to disability and disability care, whilst supporting the narrative that disabled ex-servicemen were overlooked by the nation they fought to protect.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2018

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  • Local Population Studies was first published in 1968, and since then it has focused on presenting cutting-edge research in local, population and social history. It is published twice a year online and in print by the Local Population Studies Society, with the support of the University of Oxford. For information about how to become a member of the LPSS, and for freely available back issues from 1968 to 2010, please visit www.localpopulationstudies.org.uk
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