BBC One has given the green-light to Gary Lineker: My Grandad’s Untold War, a one-hour documentary exploring a brutal but often overlooked chapter of World War Two through his grandfather’s own experiences.
“My grandfather never talked to me about the war, but I’ve since discovered a little about what happened to him and his colleagues”, Gary Lineker commented in a statement. “This made me curious to discover more. Seventy five years on, it’s important that we don’t forget the lessons and horrors of war.”
Gary Lineker: My Grandad’s Untold War follows Lineker as he follows in the footsteps of his grandfather – an ordinary man caught up in extraordinary events in the Mediterranean theatre of war. Through an immersive journey in to his grandfather’s service, Gary will uncover a whole new take on this iconic part of our shared national story, and take a fresh look at the history of World War Two. As a member of the Royal Army Medical Corps, Gary’s grandfather was involved in a key campaign in Italy, but despite risking life and limb on the front lines, he and his fellow soldiers were branded ‘D-Day Dodgers’.
While the veterans of the D-Day landings in Normandy have gone down in history as heroes, Gary wants to know why men like his grandfather were treated by some as second-class veterans, and told they had it easy. As he follows his story and gets hands-on with history, Gary will uncover heroic, deeply personal and harrowing stories not only of his grandfather but of the men he fought alongside in Italy. The one-off is being produced by Wall to Wall Media (a Warner Bros Television Production UK Ltd company). Sue Hills is the director, while Colette Flight is the executive producer.
“Gary is one of the country’s most popular presenters and this is a fascinating chance to explore the war through his grandfather’s unique experiences”, said the BBC’s Director of Content Charlotte Moore, who commissioned the documentary alongside the BBC’s Head of Commissioning for Natural History and Specialist Factual Tom McDonald. “This documentary will show how individuals lives can be changed forever by global conflicts and yet when they return home their sacrifice is too easily forgotten.”