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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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My 2½ Years In The Land Army

by BBC Open Centre, Hull

Contributed by 
BBC Open Centre, Hull
People in story: 
Millie Parker of Hull
Location of story: 
Ashford, Kent
Background to story: 
Civilian Force
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
20 July 2005

Millie PArker and her Land Army pals celebrate VE Day 2005 at the BBC Open Centre in Hull.

As told to Alan Brigham,, 17/07/2005

I volunteered for the Land Army. I went to have a medical, I wasn’t quite 17½ so I had to wait and a fortnight before I was 18 they sent for me to go down London and from London I was sent to Ashford, Kent where I was for 2½ years.

I’ve got lots of good memories from them days; for one, I was landed on good lodgings — which was the main thing and I was with a good crowd but they were all Cockneys and you know how they talk when you get on the coach and I thought “What have I gotten in to.”, but after a week I could understand them.

One morning I remember in particular, we were working on the Appledor Estate farm and we hadn’t been in the fields an hours when the Doodlebugs started coming over; there was five hundred. There was the aeroplanes shooting them down. We flung ourselves to the ground and we were lucky that nobody got hurt. I think we was in the field an hour like that. We got up and that broke the tension as we all started laughing at each other. When it came two we were in this patch of parsnips and the leaves were all wet. We’d all got white dots on our noses and our faces and everywhere. It really broke the tension that did.

We did a benevolent concert. One of the ladies, we didn’t know who she was or where she came from, well she fell in the threshing machine and lost one of her legs. There was a benevolent fund but there was never much came from it so we decided to hold our own benevolent concert. Well you never had such a benevolent concert in your life. There was so much talent in the Land Girls, it was brilliant! All the solders used to come and book us and we had this for three month’. It was absolutely fabulous. Then there DJ parties, I can remember one but I can’t remember going to the next one {cheeky laughter}. Oh it was a good ‘un, we had an excellent time.

When the war was over we were told “That’s it, the war’s finished, you can go home now. Give us yer uniform back.” There was no thank you nor nothing! That was it. All I got for nearly three years service is my arm band, this one I’m wearing here.

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