Dorothea Crewdson was born in Bristol in 1886 and brought up in Nottingham. In 1911 she enrolled in the British Red Cross as a VAD nurse and passed her exams the following year. In 1915 she received instructions to be stationed in Le Treport in northern France. She spent the rest of the war nursing at the frontline in various field hospitals and was awarded the military medal for her bravery. She died in 1919 after contracting peritonitis, just before she was due to return home to England. Her diaries are edited by her nephew, Richard Crewdson.