Whaley Bridge author tells history of wartime evacuees

Gillian Mawson has produced a vivid account of wartime history.
Gillian Mawson has produced a vivid account of wartime history.

A Whaley Bridge author is celebrating the publication of her latest work, which charts the moving stories of Britain’s Second World War evacuees.

Gillian Mawson has spent the last eight years researching the book, Britain’s Wartime Evacuees, interviewing hundreds of people who lived through the experience.

The result provides a vivid account on the nation in its darkest hours.

Kate Bamforth of publisher Pen and Sword Books said: “It is almost 80 years since the evacuations happened so those who were actually there and who remember what it was like may not be with us much longer, making these detailed first-hand records all the more important.

“This book is perfect for anyone with a relative who was evacuated and who wants to know more or for those who are interested in the social history aspect of war.”

In September 1939, the Government Evacuation Scheme was initiated, in which almost 1.5million civilians, mostly children, were evacuated from the cities thought most likely to be the targets of aerial bombing.

This was followed by a second mass evacuation of coastal towns a year later.

The book features a number of stories from Derbyshire, where households welcomed thousands of evacuees and the cultural and class exchanges which followed.

The book costs £19.99, order via www.pen-and-sword.co.uk or 01226 734222.