Born in Lancashire, England, U.K. in 1965, Nigel moved to Normandy in 1992 shortly after completing an M.A. Distinction in fine arts.
Fascinated by World War II, as a young boy he remembers being transfixed by the 1970’s ‘World at War’ television documentary, and from then on has never stopped researching and learning that period of the twentieth century.
Nigel has since 1999 worked as an accredited freelance Normandy guide, giving tours and lectures on the D-Day landings of 1944 and the Normandy Campaign that ensued thereafter.
He has now toured with or given lectures to thousands of people, privately or through tour operators in France, the U.S.A. Canada or the U.K. Amongst them: Allied veterans and their families, the U.S. Secretary to the Army, the present 101st Airborne, a Congressional group, the film crew for the documentary “The War” by Ken Burns, the Sikorsky helicopter group, to mention but a few…..
In 2004 he recorded the voice-over narrative for a 60th D-Day anniversary DVD produced for the Caen Mémorial museum. In 2009 he recorded the narrative to the film at the Pegasus Memorial of the British 6th Airborne Division. In 2014 France 3 Normandie Television combined Nigel’s art and history narration for a short documentary about a British commando raid in 1942 codenamed ‘Aquatint’.
Nigel has so far helped with two memorials in Normandy, one in remembrance of the 4th Lincolnshire Battalion’s liberation of Conteville, the other marking the U.S. Ninth Air Force B26 ‘Hitch-hiker’ crash near Fierville-Bray in July 1944. Through auction of a painting and print edition by Nigel, the “Moulin des Rondelles 1944” association raised a significant sum to help the visit of Next of Kin in 2014.
Visual or research contributions (acknowledgements) to two WWII books: ‘Angels of Mercy’ by Paul Woodadge and ‘Dog Company’ by Patrick K O’Donnell.
Nigel substantially contributed the written content to “Gentlemen soldiers”, by Gregory Wait, which was published in March 2014.
During 2007 Nigel worked for the American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) and was part of the interpretive guide team for the inaugural year of the visitor center at the Normandy American Cemetery above ‘Omaha’ beach. Then returned to freelance status to pursue a self-employment balance between history and art.
Tours are as of 2014 giving way to increasing lecture presentations to groups on Seine river cruises or elsewhere by appointment.
Nigel’s artwork is visible at http://www.nigel-stewart.com