Source 2

Memories of an evacuee, from ‘Our Evacuee’, a collection of memories compiled by Oswestry Heritage Centre

“We were herded like cattle around the streets of Oswestry, officials knocking on the doors of those who had put their names down as wanting an evacuee. That person come out of his house and chose whom they like the look of. It was total chaos. Some children were still being walked around the streets at midnight”.

[This memory is from Margaret Corlett. Margaret and her brother, Harold, were evacuated from Birkenhead. Margaret remembers that she “was billeted by 9pm”, so she was lucky compared to some other children. She stayed with Mr and Mrs Cyril Brayne and their son, John, who was aged 7 when she arrived. Margaret went back home to Birkenhead in 1942.]

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2. Read Source 2. These are the memories of Margaret Corlett, who was evacuated from Birkenhead to Oswestry.

  • Who chose where each evacuee would stay?
  • How does the evacuee’s account (Source 2) differ from the account of the local paper (Source 1)? Think about the following:
    • How were the evacuees treated?
    • How well was the evacuation organised?
    • What was the reaction of people in the town?