Primary History KS2: WW2 Clips. Interview with a child from a host family
Interview with a child from a host family
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 - eg 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.