Use of Photographs and Video

Can I use the photographs that appear on this site?

You are very welcome to use any of the images from my site – I do not personally claim copyright to any of the historic images. However I have taken them from various sources and the full provenance and copyright of them is sometimes unknown.

All images used are believed to be in the public domain or freely licensed for re-use, unless otherwise stated. Most British images are Crown Copyright expired, being created for the Crown before 1st June 1957. Images shown as from the Bundesarchiv are from the Commons:Bundesarchiv under a Creative Commons license. Other images are from the United States National Archive, taken by Federal employees. Other images are believed to be copyright free because they were captured from the enemy and became Crown or Federal copyright which has now expired.

The judgement of Wikimedia Commons, a respected international body, that an image is in the public domain, can generally be relied on. However I make no personal guarantee or warranty as to the copyright status of any image.

Any copyright holder who believes I have erred with respect to any particular should contact me and I will swiftly rectify the situation.

If there is definite information about the status of the image – and possibly an original caption or description – then I include this in the IPTC information in the image file. You can usually view this by doing a “Get info” about the file or similar, or viewing it in an image editor such as Photoshop. The nature of the web means that this information is not always available.

How do I find official British pictures taken during the war, including those taken overseas in every theatre of the war?

The best source is the Imperial War Museum … try searching for a range of terms at: IWM Search

There are many photographs that the IWM does not have the resources to put online, so you would have to visit the museum itself in London to see the extent of the collection.

Note that pictures that were Crown Copyright during the war are now in the public domain because copyright has now expired. A large number of them are also available on Wikimedia Commons, a respected international body which has verified that these images are in the public domain – and has never been legally challenged on the issue.

Where can I find a high resolution copy of an image used here?

Try a reverse image search to see who else has a copy of the picture. See

The worldwide community that gathers images at Wikimedia Commons is continually updating and improving the range and quality of images that are in the public domain and available from their site.

It is worth noting that the categorisation process that they use is very difficult to navigate and will often not show all the images that they have on a particular subject – it is often better to make use of a number of different search terms to discover what they have.

Can I use the video that appears on this site?

None of the video that appears in the posts are hosted by World War II Today. All are embedded from other sites – usually YouTube. By clicking on the bottom right hand corner of an embedded video you can find the original link and see the source on YouTube or elsewhere. You can then contact the “owner” or publisher of the material.

The validity of this embedded material changes over time. Some collectors of really good videos from World War II have now decided to make this material “private” or otherwise difficult to access. However the nature of the internet means that this material is often popping up elsewhere. Much of the best original wartime footage was taken by government employees, of whatever nation, and is now out of copyright. Over time I would expect more of this material to be publicly available – and I will try to add such video material to the site as time progresses and more becomes available.