The chance finding of some old recordings have inspired a new book, partly set in Winchester and Itchen Abbas.

When The Planes Flew Over, by Natalie Kayley, was written thanks to the stories she was told by family members and a neighbour about their memories of World War Two.

Natalie, who lives in Chandler's, Ford, said: “One New Year's Eve (2018) I was rummaging through a draw and found an old Dictaphone where I had recorded my nan, my grandads, my great auntie and a neighbour who used to live next door to us.

“When I found the Dictaphone, I put a couple of AAA batteries in and it still worked. I thought the recordings would be lost.

“It was the year my nan passed away so it was really nice to hear her voice again. I promised to write the story the following year (2019). In August last year I finished it and self-published it.

“The characters in the book are my nan, my two grandads, my great-auntie and my next-door neighbour.

“My nan and great-auntie are sister from Winchester and one of my grandads was based in the midst of the Southampton blitz. My other grandad had a more countryside perspective of the war in Itchen Abbas and he remembers the Canadian soldiers coming over.

“My neighbour lived in a very small village called Longwood. There were a couple of evacuees that were sent in her direction, so she remembers a lot about that.”

When The Planes Flew Over is the first book in a trilogy Natalie is writing, with each instalment focusing on a different part of World War Two.

Natalie said: “There was so much information, that I decided to write three books. My first book focusses on the first two years of World War Two from their memory.

“It wasn't something I really intended to do, it was just something that came to me. I wanted to do it for the people that gave me their time to tell me their stories. The stories were too good not to share and I'm hoping that some day I can share them with my children.

“I am hoping I can finish the second book by the end of this year.“

The official launch of the book is taking place on January 27 at P&G Wells in Winchester.

Natalie will be there to talk about the book, sign copies and read out some chapters.

She said: “P&G Wells was a book store my mum used to work at when I was a little girl, I used to spend the summer holidays in the children's section reading the recent Roald Dahl releases. It means a lot that my book is now on the shelf in the same store.”

The book can also be purchased by visiting: