Some sad news… and some good news. November 2016
This past week has brought some very sad news but also, thankfully, some good news about the Second World War evacuees I have interviewed – and those who cared for them during the war.
I am very sorry to report that the lovely Mrs Ruth Harrison has passed away. She and her parents cared for Win De La Mare, an evacuee child from Guernsey, between 1940 and 1945 in Stockport. Ruth and Win practically became sisters during the war and were heartbroken when Win had to return to her parents in Guernsey in 1945. However they remained in constant touch through letters and visits across the Channel. (Win told me that she never really settled into Guernsey life after the war.) Below is a photograph of Ruth and Win, in England, which I took a few years ago. Also pictured are Ruth’s son, Phil, and Win’s Guernsey friend, Rose, who was also evacuated to Stockport in 1940. Rest in Peace Ruth. You will be missed by all who knew and loved you.
Thankfully I also have some pleasant news to report. Evacuee mother, Mrs Ruth Berry, who was evacuated from Guernsey to St Helens in 1940, will celebrate her 107th birthday on Saturday 19 November. The photograph below was taken at her 105th birthday party in 2014.
Check out my recent article on the emotional wartime letters sent by child evacuees to their parents – and still treasured by their families: click the link below
My third book, ‘Evacuation in the Second World War told through Newspaper reports, Official documents and the Accounts of those who were there’ will be published on 30 November 2016 by Frontline Books. It contains testimony, wartime photographs and documents from hundreds of British evacuees who spent the war years in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Testimony is also included from evacuees who were sent to the British mainland from The Channel Islands and Gibraltar. The chapters cover themes such as: Plans for Evacuation, The Parents’ Decision, Finding Homes for evacuees, Wartime Letters Home, Evacuated adults and teachers, The kindness of strangers, The return home and the Aftermath of evacuation. The tragic aspect of evacuation is also covered, such as children who suffered at the hands of their foster parents or died within days of being evacuated to supposedly ‘safe areas.’
The book can be pre-ordered here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Britains-Wartime-Evacuees-Evacuations-Accounts/dp/1848324413/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1470912009&sr=1-3&keywords=gillian+mawson+books