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by AgeConcernShropshire

Contributed by 
People in story: 
Mrs DM Gordon
Location of story: 
Evenwood, nr Cound, Shropshire
Background to story: 
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
11 May 2005

The personal message I received from Queen Elizabeth to thank me for opening my door to strangers.

During the war I had two rented cottages in the village of Evenwood near Cound, Shropshire. I had a daughter so I wanted to have female evacuees, my husband was in the Royal Air Force. In total, I had 17 eva-cuees, the most in Shropshire. I couldn't turn away anybody who had nowhere to stay.

After the war I received a personal message from Queen Elizabeth to mark her appreciation of the service I had rendered to my Country by opening my doors to strangers who were in need of shelter.

I met my first evacuees at Cound School and was allocated a young mother with 3 daughters, they only stayed for a week. The nuns from the Convent in Acton Burnell asked me to take in Peggy and her 3 sons, so I did.

Then I was asked to take in Peggy's sister-in-law Aggie and her 3 month old baby. Aggie had a single bed on the landing, the baby slept in my daughter's cot and my daughter slept with me.

The nuns asked me to take in 2 more ladies, they were the mother of Peggy and the mother of Aggie. The nuns brought 2 more beds.

Two weeks later I was asked to have 2 brothers, members of the Merchant Navy, they slept on a put-me-up in the kitchen and on the settee in the front room. They stayed for 2 weeks.

We had no bathroom or indoor toilet. Each cottage had a bucket outside the back door.

Afternote: On the 8th June, 1946, my daughter Dorothy, a pupil at Acton Burnell School, received a message from King George V1. He sent the message to the school children in acknowledgement of the fact that they had shared in the hardships and dangers of the War and that they had shared in the triumph of the Allied Nations.

My husband's story "Bill Gordon's War with the RAF in North Africa and Italy" can be found at A5975931

My story "My Daughter's Message from King George V1" can be found at A4086579.

Story: This story has been submitted to the People's War site by Muriel Palmer (volunteer) of Age Concern Shropshire Telford & Wrekin on behalf of Mrs DM Gordon (author) and has been added to the site with her permission. The author fully understands the site's terms and conditions.

see more of Dolly Gordon's stories and photographs:

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This story has been placed in the following categories.

Childhood and Evacuation Category
Shropshire Category
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