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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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Junior Red Cross in Cambridge

by cambsaction

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Rosemary Marshall (nee Pink)
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27 June 2005

I was a pupil at Chesterton Senior School from 1941 until 1944. As these were the 'war years' we, as older school children, were encouraged to do 'our bit' for the war effort. One of these was to join the Junior Red Cross, which I did. Apart from learning the basics of nursing, we had the opportunity to help at the Leys School in Cambridge. During the war years it was taken over by the Military and turned into a hospital for wounded servicemen.
We, as young girls, we were about 13+, were always in pairs. I went with my best friend Marion, whom I incidentally still keep in contact with.
We were allocated a ward or 'house' on our arrival and duly dressed in our Red Cross uniform, where we helped with menial jobs on the ward, helped to serve supper, collected the pots from the ward and washed up later.
I can remember we felt so important, to think although we were only very young girls, we were doing 'our bit' towards the war effort.
Strangely enough, I continued to stay in the Red Cross and from 1946 worked at their head office in Harvey Road as it was then.
I passed all my exams and was very proud of being able to wear the full uniform of the Red Cross all of the time!

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