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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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Allan Scott
User ID: U565476

Although I was not born until 1952, the whole of my life has been shaped by my parents' experience of war. My mother was Minna Chatrine Tofte, a Dane who came to England in 1937 and married my father, Len Scott, shortly thereafter. They travelled in Germany in the 1930s, and were very much aware that war was looming: in fact my mother joined the ATS in 1939, and was called up in August of that year.

Her career began well -- both she and her Scots terrier 'Ib Fidelius Aedeltand' (Ib Faithful Noble-tooth) were welcomed, and she soon achieved a sensitive posting in Movement Control. But in 1940 the Germans invaded Denmark, my mother was moved to a less sensitive area, and she soon found herself increasingly isolated as a 'foreigner' who had little or nothing in common with the men and women around her. In 1942 she left the army for health reasons; a polite way of saying she had had a nervous breakdown.

My father volunteered, and after going through basic training he served in the Pay Corps first in the War Office and then overseas, in Algiers and in Italy. The long separation from my mother was difficult to bear, but he still has literally hundreds of letters that passed between them during these very testing years.

My father is working on an account of their life together (and apart) from which I have quoted in a number of articles on the web site. He is now posting a series of stories himself, describing in some detail his service in Algiers and later in Italy.

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Sgt Len Scott RAPC

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