In order to see this content you need to have both Javascript enabled and Flash installed. Visit BBC Webwise for full instructions

Children in World War 2: A host child describes his experiences

Context

The families who received evacuees were called 'host' families. When evacuees arrived in the 'reception areas' in the countryside they would be taken to a public place, often a village hall.

Here they would be the responsibility of a 'billeting officer' who would line them up, ready for selection by the host families

Strong, healthy-looking boys were often chosen first so that they could help with work - e.g. on farms.

Host families were often reluctant to accept mixed groups of boys and girls, which was a problem for brothers and sisters who did not wish to be parted. Those who insisted on remaining together were often the last to be chosen.

Evacuation meant upheaval and disruption for host families just as it did for evacuees. But many life-long friendships were forged between evacuees and the children they met in their new homes.

The boy speaking here was interviewed by Olive Shapley of the BBC in September 1939.

Transcript

At this point we thought it was time to ask one of the children who lived in the town what he thought of this evacuation business...

And what do you think about evacuation?
Well... It's been carried out alright... I've got two girls in our house and I've had a very nice time showing them around. I was a little bit disappointed when they brought two girls to the house - I'd expected two boys but - they're turning out alright anyway.

Programmes to download

Programmes to download at any time

Download programmes

A collection of programmes to download as mp3 files at any time. Includes dance and music.

Podcasts

Podcasts

Current podcasts

See all School Radio and other Learning podcasts available from the BBC Podcast Directory.

The Tales of Beatrix Potter

Beatrix Potter

Beatrix Potter

Enjoy our new collection of Beatrix Potter's well-known tales retold by an all-star cast for a young audience.

Just Think...

Just Think

Just Think...

Get to grips with life’s big questions with our new series ‘Just Think…’

Contact us

Contact us

Contact us

We welcome your feedback, suggestions and pupils' work.

WW1 commemoration

WW1 Performance Pack

WW1 Performance Pack

Commemorate the outbreak of WW1 by staging our specially-written play 'Archie Dobson's War'.

Private Peaceful - listen now!

Click to listen to Private Peaceful by Michael Morpurgo

Private Peaceful

All 13 episodes of Michael Morpurgo's moving WW1 story are available to listen to online.

Teacher's notes

Teacher's Notes

Online Teacher's Notes

Notes to support the programmes. For Autumn 2014 onwards Notes are on individual series pages.