The Hull Blitz
The government knew that bombs would be dropped on Britain so at the beginning of the war they decided to move children to safety in the countryside. This was called being ‘evacuated’.
Young children (under five) were allowed to take their mothers with them but older ones had to go on their own. Every day children would arrive at school with their suitcases packed, in case when they got to school they were told they were going to be evacuated that day, as it was a secret until then. Children were taken to the Paragon station and boarded a train to their new home.
When children got to their destination they were met at the train station by all the people in the village who had rooms and beds to take people in. Children weren’t always allowed to stay in the same houses as their brothers and sisters. The adults would choose the children they liked the look of best, so the children didn’t have any choice in it.
Once in the countryside you had to start a new school and make new friends which isn’t always easy. Lots of children loved their new homes and being in the countryside, some had never left Hull. There were lots of outdoor activities to do in the countryside as well. Some children had a hard time fitting into their new families, homes and schools and were really homesick. It was especially hard because they knew their families were in danger of being bombed in Hull.
Some Hull school girls were evacuated to Malton in North Yorkshire. While they were there a film was made of their activities. Visit the Yorkshire Film Archive online (see Related Links at bottom of page) and search for 'Malton Evacuees' to see what the girls got up to.
Experience evacuation for yourselves in the ‘Evacuation!’ led session at the Streetlife Museum.