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Carol Harris

& Mike Brown

Writing, walking and talking history

Women at War 1939-1945: In Uniform - Carol Harris

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World War II witnessed the greatest mobilization of women in British history for service in the armed forces. For many women, who were often still in their teens, this was their first time away from home. The issue of a uniform and their first night in a barrack hut were experiences that would stay with them for ever, together with the strangeness of service discipline and the cook house food. Women served with all three of the armed forces - the Auxiliary Territorial Service (Army), the Wrens (Royal Navy) and the Women's Auxiliary Air Force (Royal Air Force). Jobs carried out by the service women ranged from MT driver, clerk and frontline nurse, to armourer, raid plotter and top-secret wireless operator. Using a combination of author's narrative interwoven with a rich selection of eyewitness accounts and personal reminiscences, "Women at War" evokes something of the wartime spirit of humour in adversity and of lasting friendships formed. More importantly, it gives a vivid insight into what women's lives were like, from recruiting to demobilization.

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