Meet the Evacuees

We have interviewed over 90 people for the Children on the Move project. These include not only former evacuees, but also members of host families and local people who remember evacuees coming to their areas and filling their schools. Many still live in Staffordshire and the Midlands and were interviewed in their homes or at local libraries. Others now live as far away as Kent, Bournemouth and Wales, and were interviewed over the telephone about their experiences of evacuation.

To find out more about a particular person’s memories of evacuation and hear clips from their interview, simply use your mouse to click on their name or the Read more link and you will be taken to a separate page with information including photographs and audio clips from their original interview. Once you have selected a story, you can come back to this page or read all of the stories using the ‘Next’ and ‘Previous’ links at the top of that page.

This page only shows twenty stories at a time, so if you can’t find a story you want to read simply refresh this page to see a different selection. Or, if you know the name of the person’s story you would like to read about, type their name into the search box at the top right of this page.

Norman Jones

Norman Jones was one of the last to be evacuated from Essex and went by train to Stoke-on-Trent. He stayed with the Rowley family, and shared a bed with their son Kenneth.

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Lily Nye

Lily was evacuated at the age of 4 from her home in Everton to Leek. She told her friend next door she was going to be 'evaporated'!

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Peter Cotton

An evacuee called Ken was left on a bus in Chesterton with no billet family to take him in, so Peter cried until his mother took him home...

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Albert Cross

Albert Cross was evacuated from Manchester on 1st September 1939. He fell in love with Leek as soon as he saw it.

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Gordon Baker

Gordon Baker was evacuated to Shooting Butts along with his fellow boarders Morris Pell and 'Oxo' Bates.

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Bill Badham

Bill was first evacuated to Norfolk from Bethnall Green in London. From Norfolk they were supposed to be sent to Wales, but ended up in Leek!

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Jeffrey Goodwin

Jeffrey Goodwin was evacuated at the young age of 3 to live with the Goodwin family on the Keele estate. He was later adopted by the Goodwins, after his birth mother realised he had a better life in Staffordshire.

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Dorothy Chadwick

Dorothy was part of a large family living in Bucknall when the evacuees arrived. They became great friends and kept in touch after they had returned to London.

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Marjorie Clowes

Marjorie was evacuated to Leycett from her home in Manchester at the age of 9. Her mother told her she would be "back by Tuesday".

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Robert Prett

Robert Prett's brother had been evacuated to Stafford, and he begged his mother to let him go too. He ended up living next door to his mother in Fazeley Road before being moved to several billets in Stafford.

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Peter Haynes

Peter's father was appointed Billeting Officer for Stoke-on-Trent and he remembers the pressures associated with the sudden arrivals.

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‘Tommy’ Thomas

'Tommy' Thomas was billeted with a number of families in Stafford after first living with relatives in Hednesford and South Wales during WWII.

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Dorothy Jarvis

When Dorothy Jarvis was evacuated to Alton from Longsight, Manchester, she was awestruck by the beauty of the buildings and thought she was in 'fairy land'.

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Beryl Alderson

Beryl's parents took on two evacuees during the Second World War. One of these girls, Muriel, was a very lovable character, who spent an age getting ready for school in the morning.

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Peter Mirams

Peter Mirams was evacuated from Ramsgate to Uttoxeter. He did not have a happy billet, and was made to get ready for bed in his host's garage.

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Gerald Haslam

Gerald was a young boy growing up in Wilnecote during World War II. He enjoyed playing with the evacuees, and later married one.

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Ken Maple

Ken was orphaned as a very young child. At the orphanage he was wrapped in a blanket and thrown down a shoot during an air raid. He was then evacuated to Admaston.

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Tony Atkinson (Towner)

Tony was evacuated from his grandparents' home in Westgate-on-Sea to Colton where he lived with the Norman family. Here he nearly drowned in the pond at Colton...

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Brian Howard

Brian Howard was separated from his siblings when he was evacuated from Margate to Gentleshaw. He can remember sitting on the school bank singing them 'Cockney' songs.

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Leslie Kendrick

Les's sister Elsie played host to two evacuees from the south east coast and Les got in a number of scrapes with the mischievous boys.

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