Home Front - the civilian war effort

Evacuees

Evacuation of children from dangerous areas meant a great adventure for many children who had never been away from home before, not even for a holiday. Most went with their teacher; very young children went with their mothers.

Over four days, 1.9 million people were evacuated as part of the government scheme.  Most of these were children in school parties; others were expectant mothers, disabled and vunerable people. Public transport was used: children travelled on buses and trains, taking with them a suitcase, their gas mask and a packed lunch.

When the children set off they didn't know where they would be going.  Parents were not allowed to see their children off at railway stations as this would cause crowding on the platforms and distress to mothers and children.

Some children went to stay with relatives like aunties, uncles or grandparents, either in this country or abroad.  This was private evacuation.  Once the children had been evacuated, everyone expected the bombing to start but for months nothing happened and lots of children returned home.  Nearly half had returned for Christmas, because they were homesick or because their mothers missed them.




 
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