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Thursday, 1 June, 2000, 18:02 GMT 19:02 UK
Hell on the beaches
Taffy Bonner
Veteran Taffy Bonner photographed by Hugh Sykes
Gunner Taffy Bonner of the 22nd Field Regiment was 25-years-old when World War II was declared on 3 September, 1939.

He was already an experienced professional soldier, having served on the North-West Frontier during the 1935 Islamic uprising against British rule. He had witnessed the grim aftermath of the Quetta earthquake, which killed nearly 30,000 Indians.

But none of this prepared him for the nightmare of Dunkirk.

As the UK remembers the Dunkirk rescue, Taffy Bonner tells his story to Hugh Sykes from BBC Radio 4's PM programme.

Click on the quotes below to listen to the interviews.

A nation at war
 "The guns were loaded and ready for action"

The misery of conflict
 "We could hear the children screaming"

Under fire on the beaches
 "It knocked the hell out of me"

The dramatic rescue
 "It was everyone for themselves"

Heroic homecoming
 "Everybody cheered when they saw England"


You can hear the final part of Taffy Bonner's story on BBC Radio 4's PM programme today at 1700BST/1600GMT.

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