Ian R GummErwin Ureel and Ian at the new Welsh Memorial in Flanders. Erwin was the Parade Marshal and Ian was responsible for the British Military presence.
Ian is the CEO and founder of In the footsteps as well as being a full-time professional battlefield historian and guide. He is the proud holder of badge number 62 of the International Guild of Battlefield Guides, a member of the Western Front Association and a registered tour guide with the European Tour Operators Association.
"Battlefield tours are my passion, they are what I love to do and I feel extremely privileged to be able to take people to the battlefields "following in the footsteps" of an ancestor or relative on a genealogy tour, retracing the steps of a military unit or formation on a unit specific tour and guiding them around some of the most important historical sites that have shaped the world in which we live on a tour tailor-made just for them."
Ian has served in the British Forces with the Army Reserve for over thirty years. He was a serving officer in the Royal Welsh and had the privilege of commanding B (Rorke's Drift) Company of the 2nd Battalion, the Royal Regiment of Wales. Ian continues to serve with the Military and holds the post of Deputy Commandant with Gwent & Powys ACF as well as that of a Brigade Staff Officer in Brecon. The experience he has gained with the British Army allows him to add a soldier's perspective in his guiding profession.
Ian has led tours for more than fifteen years and visited battlefields far and wide, from Western Europe, through the former Soviet block and into Russia; from tours in Britain and Northwest Europe through the Mediterranean and beyond as far south as Zululand in South Africa.
He has covered all of the major battlefields associated with the First World War on the Western Front and a great many of the lesser actions too. These have included tours to Mons, Le Cateau, following the Great Retreat, the Ypres Salient, the Aubers Ridge, Fromelles, the Somme, Vimy Ridge, Bullecourt. the Messines Ridge, Cambrai, Villers-Bretonneux, Saint Quentin, Verdun, the Chemin des Dames, the Meuse-Argonne and much more ...
Ian has also extensively toured the battlefields of the Second World War in the west including: Dunkirk, Dieppe, the D-Day Beaches of Normandy, the British and American Airborne sites of Normandy, following the Normandy Breakout and drive across France to Paris, the British and American Airborne sites of Operation Market Garden along ‘Hell’s Highway’ and at Arnhem, Bastogne and the Battle of the Bulge, the British and American Rhine Crossing sites and many more ...
The furthest back in time that Ian has travelled is to the time of the Norman Conquest of England where he followed in the footsteps of Harold Godwinson, the last Anglo-Saxon King of England, both in Normandy prior to the invasion and during the fighting for the English crown. He has led tours looking at the Medieval battles associated with the Wars of the Roses and the Hundred Years War including a very popular tour that covers Crecy and Agincourt.
Ian has guided tours that cover the Napoleonic period including the Peninsula War and the Hundred Days Way that culminated in the Battle of Waterloo. He is our lead guide for our very special VIP Waterloo 200 Tour.
Ian has led tours into Eastern Europe including Russia following the fighting in the Great Patriotic War, Berlin looking at the final days of Hitler's Third Reich and Poland visiting some of the POW camps and Concentrations camps including Auschwitz-Birkenau.
In addition to all this, Ian has led tours to Isandlwana and Rorke's Drift in South Africa — having been the Company Commander of B (Rorke’s Drift) Company in the 2nd Battalion, the Royal Regiment of Wales how could he not!
Let Ian take you on a journey of discovery where his experience and expertise will bring the battlefield to life and give you an impression of what the officers and men who fought there endured.
Order your copy today!