Pre-war Britain, a nation in the shadow of conflict with people expecting the worst, bracing themselves for whatever fate and Mr. Hitler had in store for them. What would the future hold? What would war mean to every man, woman, and child in the land? There was only one thing for it in these troubled times – Keep Calm and Carry On.
Tag Archive for: war
With her film star looks she started the war a frivolous rebel; the young fiancée of a wealthy French industrialist and ended it one of the most decorated women of the Second World War with the George Cross, the Croix de Guerre, and the Medal of Freedom to her name. She was even awarded the Médaille de la Résistance an honour hardly ever bestowed on a foreigner.
In World War II if you were between 25 and 50 you could help England by joining one of the barrage balloon squadrons of the auxiliary air force. It said so on the poster.
Barrage balloons were bags of lighter-than-air gas fixed to steel cables that were anchored to the ground. They could be raised or lowered by means of a winch, often attached to a lorry for increased mobility, and their purpose was simple, ingenious, and effective: To fill vulnerable air space with bulk, thus stopping enemy aircraft from entering it at low levels. This meant that enemy aircraft were forced to fly at higher altitudes decreasing bombing accuracy, making the aircraft more easily spotted, and making it simpler for the ground based Bofors anti-aircraft guns and fighter pilots to attack them.
Before the outbreak of the Second World War most women, particularly married women, spent their days cooking, cleaning and looking after the children. There was no expectation that they would go out to work and it was even considered shameful in some circles if a married woman took up employment. From an early age girls were taught to sew and knit, cook and clean, whilst boys were thrust into education in the sure knowledge that one day they would have to be the sole provider for their future wives and families. Read more
Based on a novel by Owen Sheers the new war film RESISTANCE stars Martin Sheen, the actor who gave such convincing performances as Tony Blair and football manager Brian Clough. The place is Great Britain in 1944, Russia has fallen, the D Day landings have failed and the German Wehrmacht has invaded the country. Nazi forces and Panzer divisions sweep through the country striking panic and fear in the demoralised population. The film tells the story of the British Resistance Organisation [BRO] which had been formed in 1940 on the orders of Winston Churchill. Read more
The ‘Rosie’ phenomenon came about after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour in 1941 and the Americans entered into WW2. The Government realised the only way to replace the fighting men was to recruit as many women as possible. Government sources issued continual appeals with ads and articles in magazines and papers to get women into work previously done by men. More than six million women helped build planes, bombs, tanks and other weapons that would help to win WW2.
During the war many of the governments poster campaigns were aimed specifically at women and none more so than the drive to recruit women to work on the land. The WLA was founded during the 1st WW when the 1917 harvest failed and the country was left with just three weeks reserve of food, staring famine in the eye. With an acute shortage of farm workers due to conscription, Lady Trudie Denman was appointed to organise the WLA and by 1918 there were 23,000 Land Girls working on the country’s farms. They helped to avert disaster but in 1919 as the men returned from war the organisation was disbanded.
Every month we take a look at the different items rationed during the second world war. This months ration is Tea.
What could be more British than a nice cuppa! Tea rationing in Britain didn’t start until July 1940, the average tea ration was 2oz per adult per week. Back then the tea was sold loose, the modern tea bag wasn’t invented until 1944! The loose tea was actually more beneficial as you could easily re-use the tea leafs over and over again. Read more
Propaganda isn’t meant to be funny, but some of the posters produced during the Second World War are comedy gold! Obviously we’re not making fun of war, just the posters.
The featured poster (click image above to enlarge) in this article shows two camp Sailors enjoying each others company with Hitler in the background saying “Unless we can divide those two fellows – we’re sunk!” After a couple of pints Hitler might need a crowbar to divide them! Read more