WW1 in colour: Stunning images bring historic conflict to life ahead of Armistice Day

1/24
World War I

Ypres, Belgium in October 1917 after it had been destroyed by bombing, leaving a large crater behind (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

2/24
World War I

A German prisoner assists wounded British solders head to a dressing station following fighting on Bazentin Ridge on July 19th, 1916 (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

3/24
World War I

A trio of soldiers look out solemnly at the destruction of the battlefield (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

4/24
World War I

German officers stand by an armoured car in Ukraine in early 1918 (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

5/24
World War I

Soldiers celebrate the end of the war on November 11th, 1918
(Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

6/24
World War I

Scottish soldiers, smiling, prepare to board a truck as they depart the battlefield (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

7/24
World War I

8 British soldiers outside of a destroyed building (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

8/24
World War I

Scottish troops head over a grassy mound during the Battle of the Canal du Nord in 1918 (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

9/24
World War I

An elderly French couple greet American soldiers after being liberated from four years of German control (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

10/24
World War I

Soldiers from New Zealand in the trenches (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

11/24
World War I

Injured Captain Benjamin H Geary VC is carried off on a stretcher by prisoner bearers at Achiet-le Petit on 21st August 1918 (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

12/24
World War I

French soldiers at the Battle of Verdun in 1916 (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

13/24
World War I

Australian soldiers walking through a destroyed German outpost on 28th August, 1916 (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

14/24
World War I

Canadian soldiers at Neuville St. Vaast in April 1917 (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

15/24
World War I

Canadian soldiers in a captured trench (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

16/24
World War I

Canadian soldiers in the trenches (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

17/24
World War I

Allied soldiers attending the funeral of Sergeant Henry Nicholas VC in France (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

18/24
World War I

Canadian Nursing Sisters at the site of mass graves (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

19/24
World War I

German soldiers sitting on a captured British tank (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

20/24
World War I

British soldiers smiling and celebrating after capturing a German trench (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

21/24
World War I

Jubilant soldiers on the Western Front after hearing of the Armistice on November 11th, 1918 (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

22/24
World War I

A celebration in Philadelphia USA on November 11th 1918 as the armistice is announced, bringing the First World War to an end (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

23/24
World War I

Crowds celebrate the end of the War in New York City (Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

24/24
World War I

King George V places a wreath on the coffin of the Unknown Warrior on Armistice Day in November, 1920
(Royston Leonard / Media Drum World / Caters News)

Nearly a century after British soldiers made the ultimate sacrifice, these breathtaking images have bought the horror of World War One back to life.

Dozens of poignant pictures showing the everyday happenings of the Great War have been colourised for the first time.

The painstaking restoration is the work of Royston Leonard, 55, a Cardiff electrician whose grandfather fought in the conflict.

Mr Leonard said: ‘The First World War was the first time machines took over the battlefield. Guns got massive with it, both sides rained down shells, making it hell for troops on the ground to the point where the men just had no hope at all, it was just madness.’

Among the images are jubilant crowds in New York celebrating the allied forces’ victory and joyful soldiers making the long journey home from the front lines.

Mr Leonard added: ‘There was no winner – it was just madness taken over the world.’