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Evacuation

In: Historical Events

Submitted By connorbro
Words 1232
Pages 5
The lives of people on the home front were greatly changed by evacuation during World War II. How useful and reliable are these sources in explaining how people's lives were changed by evacuation during World War II. During World War II, children were moved to places such as the countryside due to area's being at risk of being bombed by the Germans. Pregnant women, teachers and the disabled were also evacuated. They all had to leave behind their families at home to move to area's where they were at lower risk of the bombing. All the evacuations took place on the 1st of September 1939, the evacuation was named 'Operation Pied Piper'. Over one million evacuees left London by train, all the children would have a label attached to them with their destination they would be staying at. The aim of this essay is to see why the lives of many people were changed due to the evacuations. I will be analysing a range of primary and secondary sources to decide how reliable and useful they are to she how they changed people's lives.
In Source A1, it informs people that the government have made plans for the removal from what are 'evacuable' area's to safer area's known as 'receptional' area's, the source tells you that this for school children, children who are too young for school as long as they are accompanied by their mothers and also for the blind people. This source is reliable as it was written in 1939 when the bombings were about to take place, it was also written by the government who have no reason to lie. This leaflet was written by the government to let people know about their plans on the evacuation and tell them they do not have to take place in the evacuation as it was completely up to you if you decide to volunteer, this leaflet is to persuade parents who were not sure whether to let their children go away to a different family. This source shows that lives would be changed a lot if parents were to send their children away.
In Source A3, it is a interview with a wartime evacuee which was recorded for a HTV television programme on evacuation, she talks about her personal experiences with the evacuations. She lived in a popular bombing area being Birmingham where the German aircraft were most likely to drop their bombs. She was travelling with a friend named Margaret Gardner and her brother Michael, they were hoping to be billeted together but were unfortunately nobody had room for them all, she ended up staying with her brother with the Evan's family, they were given a warm welcome to their house and were treated nice and were cared for, there was only one problem they didn’t understand each other well. This sources was put out in September 2000, so this could be over-exaggerated but most likely was not as there was not any major problems stated which makes this source more reliable, it is useful because it tells you one person's prospective of evacuation, this programme was recorded to entertain people and tell them about what people experience during the evacuations. This source suggests that mothers children's lives would be changed for the best.
In Source A10, It is about Dr. Penny Starns, a historian and university leturer, writing a book called The Evacuation of Children during World War II. She was writing more of a negative point of view of evacuation, she was saying that most people would have felt isolated and a sense of loneliness at a dangerous time of war, she goes on to talk about you was lucky to have a positive experience of evacuation. She believes most people who were less fortunate suffered physically and emotionally, She thinks evacuation has deep and long-lasting effects on life in Britain. The source was taken place in 2004, so Dr. Penny Starns may not have witnessed what evacuees actually went through and may have went off some views of evacuation, this source is useful as it shows there are also negative opinions on evacuation then just positive and lets you know her thoughts and feelings, this source is reliable as she is a professional historian and most likely used several sources to make sure it was balanced she also would have the benefit of hindsight, Dr. Penny Starns would have no reason to lie because if she was to lie her reputation would be on the line. This source suggest that lives would be changed dramatically for the worst.
In Source A6, it is a part of Bernard Kops autobiography talking about his experience of evacuation, his experience was extremely positive as he witnessed things he didn’t even did at his own home, he was finally able to use a toothbrush, he never cleaned his teeth before then, it was most likely a scary experience because he saw things he might not of known existed, he had clean sheets and a lavatory upstairs. This is useful as it how what his experience was like moving from his high-risk home area in London to a village in Buckinghamshire, it is also reliable as it was written less than 25 years after the evacuations had taken place, it could also be slightly exaggerated because he is to make his book more interesting which means he will sell more copies. I think Bernard Kops' story is trustworthy to believe because he hasn't stated anything bad that happened he was more than thrilled with his experience. This source suggests his life was changed for the better.
In Source A8, It is an interview in September 1939, with a boy who is in a host family during the evacuations, he talks about the two girls who were sent to his home. There is a image with the boy leading a donkey with one of the evacuees riding it, they are all smiling and looks like a positive environment, he says "I've had a very nice time showing them around". He was also slightly disappointed because he hoped there was going to be two boy's instead of girl's, but says they're turning out alright anyway. This is useful as it shows the prospective of a child of the host family instead of an evacuee and what he likes and dislikes about the situation, it is reliable because he is only a kid and has no need to lie. However, this broadcast would be used to persuade mothers to allow their children to go, so this could be used as a source of propaganda. This interview suggests if you send your children away they would have a nice time and that their lives would change for the better.
In conclusion I think lives of evacuees were changed a lot by evacuation, although some people had a positive experience, a lot of people were unfortunate and had a bad time dealing with being abused physically or emotionally and living with people they don’t get along with, I think with the sources I used there was a mix of useful and reliable sources, I believe this because some of the sources can be exaggerated being that some of them were a long time after the war and the evacuations and some were to young to realise what is actually going on around them.

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