Source 3

Letter written by Ellen Howard, an evacuee from Birkenhead aged 13




Life in the country impresses me as being very peaceful. One can sit in a field under a shady tree in complete quietness except for the singing of the birds and the rustle of the swaying boughs overhead. In the country there is not the smoky atmosphere of the city and it is much pleasanter to walk in fields with cows mooing and grazing on each side, than to walk along a grey dirty looking street, with litter thrown about the ground, and smoky houses for surroundings. It is lovely to wake up in the morning to feel the cool keen fresh air on one’s face. In the autumn it is such fun to gather in the harvests and it is interesting to see the trees changing into their autumn dresses. There are not many heavy motor vehicles and speeding motor cars in the country and one can walk freely along the country roads without any cars hooting behind. The countryside population is very scattered but the people work very hard in order to produce vegetables, fruit and all kinds of other foodstuffs which they take to town and sell on market days.

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3. Read Source 3. This is a letter written by Ellen Howard, an evacuee from Birkenhead aged 13.

  • Look at the words Ellen uses in this letter. Write a list of how she describes each of these items below for Birkenhead, then do the same for Oswestry and compare the two lists. What are the differences?
    • Noises
    • Surroundings (trees, streets etc.)
    • Atmosphere (the quality of the air)
    • Cars
    • Work
  • The letter was published in the local newspaper, the Oswestry and Border Counties Advertiser. Do you think the paper would have published it if Ellen had been unhappy? Give your reasons.