Walter Leslie Hellier “Wally”

This piece is made from recordings of the Honner Victoria melodeon that was bought in Catford by Wally in the 1930s before he joined the TA. Wally took this Melodeon with him to war travelling with the BEF, Dunkirk, Madagascar, India, Iran/Iraq,Me and finally Sicily where he was killed in action Feb 1944.

All that came back from Sicily was Wally’s medals and his melodeon which has sat on top of his sister’s wardrobe unplayed ever since. This is the sound of that melodeon.

The name Handäoline refers to an early accordion type instrument from Germany.


Thanks to Win Hellier for trusting me with this instrument and Freya Hellier for help with the recording.