Nikki Archer-Waring: Joint Founder & Managing Director
Nikki is the tri-national (Australian, Canadian and British) Managing Director and is the driving inspiration behind Spirit of Remembrance. As Managing Director of Spirit of Remembrance Nikki draws on over 25 years of executive management experience in Travel & Tourism in operational, HR, and Sales & Marketing sectors in traditional offline and online in the UK, Canada and Australia. Being tri-national she also has a totally unique perspective with Remembrance being able to identify with - and work within all three of her mother countries armed forces history of conflict and sacrifice.
Nikki co-founded Australasia's first online incoming travel business (Travel Online) in 1995, winning extensive governmental and private sector recognition and several prestigious awards. In 2001 Nikki moved to the UK from Australia and held a number of senior appointments with Sabre Holdings (parent company of Travelocity, Last Minute, Holiday Autos etc); London City Airport; and Head of the Travel Collection, a fully owned division of Kuoni Travel Group. Throughout her career Nikki was responsible for development and operation of large group tours, (up to 3,000 people), which included medical conferences and incentives for well known companies such as Cadbury, Toyota, Xerox to name but a few. Nikki has also served on several high profile industry boards as well as extensive industry consulting experience.
Nikki also has extensive hands-on experience at senior management level in the UK with all facets of tour operations, including her tenure as Head of Travel at The Royal British Legion where she increased brand awareness and significantly grew the tailor made tour department. Nikki hails from a distinguished tri-service military family and recognises the significant debt we all owe to all those who served and continue to serve. She is especially proud of her grandfather, Arthur Critchley-Salmonson who won a DSO in the Dardanelles, while her great uncle was one of the first pilots in the AFC. Nikki is an avid family historian who has been researching her family for the past 20 years and has discovered that her family's military service can be traced back to Brigadier General Richard Waring, who worked his way through the ranks beginning his illustrious career in 1690. Nikki is also a Member of the Guild of Battlefield Guides
Graeme Archer: Joint Founder & Director of Marketing
Graeme is our Australian Director of Marketing with an unbroken 30 years executive/board level career within the travel, tourism, leisure & hotel/hospitality industry sector. Graeme is ex Australian Army (NS) and is also a Vietnam Veteran. He hails from Euroa, a small country town in Victoria, Australia that holds the unique distinction of its sons having won more Victoria Crosses than any other town in the Commonwealth. Graeme has extensive experience in both traditional & online travel and tourism sales and marketing distribution platforms both in Australia and the UK and is also highly experienced within the online and internet travel sector with an extensive 20 year online travel & tourism background since going online in 1995. Graeme is a highly literate travel professional with extensive experience in both major corporate cultures and entrepreneurial start-ups - particularly in the online travel and leisure field with early stage start-ups. For the record, he is a both a proud Aussie and a fanatical Aussie Rules (Collingwood!) supporter.
Graeme is the full time Marketing Director for Spirit of Remembrance. He is also an award winning photographer with his work being featured by major travel companies, Tourism Bureaux and UK print and digital media. He also acts as a specialist senior travel & tourism consultant for the prestigious Gerson Lehrman Consulting Group.
Graeme as a National Serviceman followed in his brothers footsteps who saw service in Vietnam with RA Signals in the Australian Regular Army as a senior NCO. Graeme was conscripted and as a very young National Serviceman also served in South Vietnam (also in RA Signals (110 Sig Squadron) ) in Saigon, Nui Dat and Vung Tau. His passion and hobby (besides photography) is WW2 allied fighter aircraft - especially his second love - the beautiful Spitfire and its lesser loved - (but hugely appreciated) cousin the amazing 'Hurri' (Hurricane). He also is a huge fan of the WW2 Avro Lancaster and Bomber Command and can often be found at the RAF museum at Hendon in London gazing longingly at 'S for Sugar', the famous Australian crewed Lancaster from WW2.
Frank Baldwin is the Chief Battlefield Guide for Spirit of Remembrance.
Frank is a fully accredited guide with the very prestigious 'Guild of Battlefield Guides' (GBG) - holding the very early Badge No. 8. Frank is both an incredibly experienced guide, historian and heritage professional. After retiring after ten years in the army as a Royal Artillery Officer, He started leading battlefield studies for the British Army in the 1980s and subsequently worker for the Royal British Legion’s travel arm as a manager. For over ten years he was Trustee and then chairman of the Battlefields Trust charity. He has worked with leading battlefield archaeologists on projects including the rediscovery of the Battlefield of Bosworth. Frank was also elected a member of the British Commission for military history and is the author of works on the world wars, including chapters for the official British Army guide to the battlefields of the First World War. He also trains and validates battlefield guides for the Guild of Battlefield Guides and Liberation Route Europe.
Each member of the guide team has been carefully selected by Frank for their knowledge, commitment and storytelling ability. Under his guidance each guide has reconnoitred and researched their specialist itineraries with the object of bringing the past to life for you. He delights in designing tours that will appeal to a broad range of interests, particularly those following family history queries. Frank is a guiding/startup member of the Guild of Battlefield Guides,and holds badge number 08.
Below: Just one of many amazing testimonials for Frank ...
08 August 2018
To: Nikki Archer-Waring, Co-Founder & MD
Spirit of Remembrance Ltd
I am now back home in Australia after my visit to France and England. I wanted to let you know how very much I am indebted to Frank Baldwin who was our guide for the tour of the battlefields which culminated in the centenary commemoration for the Battle of Hamel, July 4th 2018 at the Australian Memorial at Hamel. It was a very special tour for me to remember my uncle who was killed in that battle. Frank had researched his details as he had for the other tour participants and arranged the itinerary to suit all. Frank could not have done more to make our days truly memorable. I greatly appreciated his wide knowledge of all the events of the war and his willingness to help everyone learn so much of those terrible years in our history.
I am very pleased to have the email he sent with his photos included in the film. I have already shown it with my own photos to a number of friends and will continue to share them with many others. All have been most interested to hear of tours by Spirit of Remembrance. The travel bag with contents I found most helpful especially the information booklet ( from which I have your details) telling of the important places where the Australians participated. It is a great reference in describing my photos.
Thank you too for the arrangements you made so we could attend the reception given by the Governor General. I know it wasn’t easy to change bookings at the last moment but your efforts were very much appreciated and I was very happy.
Congratulations on your organisation and especially for having such an excellent tour guide in Frank.
(*Name available on request)
Colonel Christopher Newbould CBE: Principal Consultant: Spirit of Remembrance:
Christopher was an integral part of the formation of Spirit of Remembrance in 2011. Back in 1997 Christopher established the "Remember Them!” Battlefield Tour programme which focused on the main battlefronts of both World Wars. Since then and until 2011, Christopher was responsible for an excellent series of battlefield tours for Poppy Travel, The Royal British Legion. As the most senior consultant for our team, Christopher's input is quite invaluable to ensure the smooth running and extensive knowledge base updates that all of our team must have.
Each member of our original guide team on our startup in 2011 was carefully selected by Christopher for their knowledge, commitment and fluent storytelling ability. Under his guidance each guide has reconnoitered and researched their specialist itineraries with the object of bringing the past to life for you. We at Spirit delight in designing tours that will appeal to an extensive range of interests, particularly those following family history queries.Colonel Christopher Newbould is a Guiding Member of the Guild of Battlefield Guides, - carrying the prestigious badge number 9.
Matthew is a modern conflict archaeologist studying warfare during the Twentieth and Twenty-first century. His work explores both the human experience of conflict and the subterranean worlds of the Western Front during the First World War. He has conducted extensive archaeological and anthropological research in France and Belgium and has both a Masters degree and a PhD in the subject. Matthew is a member of the Durand Group and advises the BBC on its cross-platform coverage on the
centenary of the First World War. He is also a major contributor to Oxford University’s online project, World War One Centenary: Continuations and Beginnings. He is a published author of Poppyganda - the story of how the modern relationships between man and nature, war and politics, the media and technology are writing another chapter in the story of this most notorious of flowers.
As a conflict archaeologist, Matthew’s research adopts a modern interdisciplinary approach, incorporating elements of anthropology, military history and archaeology. He is using this framework to explore how the subterranean landscapes of the Western Front, which themselves are a distinctive kind of conflict landscape with their own repertoire of material culture of the Great War, were created and experienced, and how existentialism, sensorial interaction and the human body coped with and mediated the extreme pressures of war life underground. He is widely published both academically and commercially and more information concerning Matthew's research can be found on his website www.modernconflictarchaeology.com.
Chris Shaw: Living History / Re-enactment advisor
Chris grew up in Kent and has always been passionate about history and bringing it to life. He is extremely knowledgeable about re-enactment and has dedicated the past 8 years to The Shorncliffe Trust creating a heritage and education park in Folkstone. The site is the most important military camp in Britain over the last 200 years and has a unique history, that includes being the birth place of the modern British Army in 1803 and being the gateway to the trenches during the Great War 1914-1918.
Heritage tourism is changing in the 21st century and Spirit of Remembrance is leading this in partnership with our charity the Shorncliffe Trust. Our vision is to create a more immersive experience for the heritage tourist as well as creating an ethical approach to the countries we visit by supporting the local communities that are the guardians of all our stories through history.