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28 October 2014
Legacies - Lincolnshire

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Christmas party
WLA girls celebrating Christmas at the Swinehead Hostel

© Mrs Sellars
Lillies at work: Wartime memories of the Women’s Land Army in Lincolnshire

During World War II, the Women’s Land Army (WLA) was revived, this organisation was first created during the First World War when it had been deemed a great success. The conscription of male farm workers to the armed forces meant that early on in World War II, rural labour shortages reached a critical point. The government’s response was to call for women to ‘do their bit’ and fill the gaps left behind by these departing men.

Lincolnshire, as a largely agricultural county, was one area affected by this call and played host to a great number of these women. The number of women drafted into the county, to work on the land, increased from 244 at the end of December 1940, to 2004 by the end of March 1945. These increases were spread across the Lincolnshire districts of Holland, Kesteven and Lindsey. The rapid movement of these women from the cities into an agricultural environment with little or no knowledge of what to expect, was traumatic and challenging. The following extracts, comprising of photographs and oral testimony, has been collected from women who formed part of the WLA in Lincolnshire during World War II. More...

Words: Paul Smith

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