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.

Bert Bugden

Bert lived in Ramsgate before being evacuated to Stafford where he stayed with three different families, some pet rabbits and a dog called Elysium.

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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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Edna Upton

Edna Upton lived in Weoley Castle as a young girl before getting the opportunity to be evacuated to Pipewood. She jumped at the chance.

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June Cowper

June was evacuated to Uttoxeter with her classmates from Withington Girls' School. Her hosts treated her like part of the family, and she wasn't homesick at all.

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Peter Phipps

Peter Phipps was at Pettman Central School in Margate when his gardening master told the boys they would be evacuated. He also told them they would be away for only 6 months...

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George Nye

George was evacuated from a children's home to Staffordshire. It was only on the day of his evacuation that he found out he had a brother and two sisters.

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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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Olga Harvey

Olga and her brother were 'running wild' in the streets of Birmingham during the WWII bombing. That was until arrangements were made for their evacuation.

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Betty Rose

Betty was evacuated with her two sisters from Essex to Norfolk before being moved to Wilnecote. Here, their family joined them and she never went back.

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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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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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Vera Jenkins

On the way to their evacuation in Staffordshire, Vera's sister June decided to go against their mother's wishes and be billeted with her friend. That was until their mother found out...

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Evelyn Green

Evelyn was born in India, and moved to Colchester when she was 6 months old. From here the family were evacuated to Stoke-on-Trent, and lived in many homes.

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Betty Allen

Betty Allen is still friends with the boy her parents took in during the Second World War. The family were very sad when he left.

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Jean Banks

Jean was evacuated with her family from Colchester to Stoke-on-Trent. She was born in India and her mother found it very difficult to get used to being poor.

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Ethel Rice

Ethel was evacuated with her family to Burton upon Trent after picking hops in Kent. She remembers the taste of hops on her fingers made her sandwiches taste funny...

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Max Reynolds

Max and his mother took in a number of evacuees and lodgers from the nearby RAF base during World War II. He enjoyed sharing his home with this wide range of different people.

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Elizabeth Barker

Elizabeth Barker was evacuated with her two younger sisters first to Norfolk and then Dilhorne, Staffordshire. The cousin of her two friends in Dilhorne was to be her future husband...

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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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Gordon Baker

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

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