Man on a mission to preserve our incredible tales of military bravery

You can watch part 1 of the story about saving military museums by ITV News Anglia's Tanya Mercer here.

A TV presenter and collector from Suffolk is on a mission to save military museums across our region threatened by the pandemic.

Often small and local, these museums have lost around 80 per cent of their revenue and many are on the brink of closing.  

Bruce Crompton wants to preserve the extraordinary stories of bravery and daring which are preserved in the museums.

Bruce Compton has a huge collection of military memorabilia Credit: ITV Anglia

Bruce, who has a huge collection of military memorabilia himself, is recording a podcast called Amazing War Stories to raise awareness and capture the tales before they're lost forever.  

The chances are if you've seen the war films Saving Private Ryan, Metal Jacket or Fury, you will have seen some of Bruce's collection of military vehicles.   

He has one of the largest 20th century collections in the world.  It's housed in his back garden in Suffolk.

You can watch the second part of Tanya's story about Bruce Compton and his military collection here.

Bruce presents the show Combat Dealers which see him discovering and restoring rare and valuable military machines.  

But it's not all about loud bangs and big tanks.  For Bruce it's about the stories behind the smallest object that can have the biggest impact.  And military museums across the country are full of such tales.  

Among the items and stories Bruce discovers is that of Walter Tull - one of the British Army's first black officers, commended for his extraordinary bravery during the First World War, who died at the second Battle of the Somme.    

The crew of the Lancaster bomber battled to stop it crashing on Halesworth Credit: Piotr Forkasiewicz

There's the bravery of the Lancaster bomber crew, commemorated at the Halesworth Airfield museum, who came under heavy attack and battled for two hours to steer their plane away from Halesworth, saving hundreds of people in the town.  

And at the Combined Military Service museum in Maldon, Bruce discovered the story of the assassins who attempted to kill Hitler's top General Rommel.  For the museum's curator it's essential the museums and these type of stories aren't lost.  

Bruce hopes the podcast will make us all support our local museums and discover the fascinating tales within.  But also to know that behind every object often lies a wonderful piece of history. 

The future of military museums is threatened by the pandemic Credit: ITV Anglia