Evacuation Was a Great Success

Published: 2021-07-01 06:30:48
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Source A suggests that the evacuation wasn't really a success for a number of reasons. "Arrangements did not always go smoothly" This goes to show that the organisation of the evacuation was something that needed work on. It also talks about people not coping with their new surroundings and that people just didn't really fit in as it says "There were reports of people fouling in gardens, hair crawling with lice and bed wetting." Some may say that they did all these as a sign that they had no respect for there surroundings but I see it differently, the fact that people are bedwetting could just be a sign of anxiety and nervousness. Although this is only a secondary source from a textbook for children it is still backed up by the fact that all of these things actually happened at the time. There were some cases of towns expecting a school of children to come but then they would end up with forty pregnant women on their doorsteps.
Source B is obviously for evacuation and is agreeing with the quote "evacuation was a great success "
I am led to believe this because looking at the picture it seems like it was taken for a newspaper or something else of that calibre. If something is taken for the British press during a war it has to be positive or people won't be confident about the war and may start panicking and this is the last thing the country wanted. The picture (taken September 1939, primary source) shows a school of children and there teachers walking down a road on there way to a London station, on the picture they are all laughing and smiling at the prospect of being taken away from home. I don't think these are the real emotions that they are feeling but are only doing this because the camera is looking so are smiling for it and waving.

Source C I would say is neutral and is neither for nor against evacuation but is just giving some information of what really happened. But it does explain the confusion and fear of the children so I could be tempted to say it's against the idea more than for it.
It is an interview 49 years after the war with a teacher who was evacuated with they're class to somewhere in the country. "We hadn't the slightest idea were we where going..." this is obviously telling us that the problem with organisation really was an issue to be thought about. "All you could hear was the feet of the children and a kind of murmur because the children were too afraid to talk." When saying this it shows that the fear shown by the children was recognisable without even having to ask them. This is a primary source because it was from a person who was there when it happened but she was very old when giving the source so not all of it could be true.
She then goes on to say "The mothers pressed against the iron gates calling "good bye darling"" When it says this I don't think she is completely telling the truth, I think that she remembers the mothers being upset and calling there last emotional goodbyes to there children but the words she has quoted can't possibly be true, they were from the south of London and people at the time didn't speak like that down there.
Source D shows some evacuee boys having a bath with looks of glee on there faces, I think this is saying that evacuation was a success as it shows the boys safe and happy.
The photo was taken during the war to be issued by the government, most probably to be used for a newspaper or something like that. In the picture it is the ratio of four boys to every bath, this maybe a sign that it was very over crowded when the children were being evacuated but it still looks like the boys are enjoying themselves.
Although they are all smiling the fact of the matter is that they know that the picture is being taken thus not showing there true emotions as children especially like to smile for the cameras so they look good in the newspapers. If the camera wasn't there bath time could have been a different story all together, they all could have had grim faces on, but we will never really know. As previously stated the photo was taken during the war so is a primary source that makes just a bit more reliable.
Sources E and F are both defiantly against the idea that "evacuation was a great success" as they are both complaining about either the people they had sent to them or the places they were sent to.
Source E is from a mother of a host family taken 49 years after the war so vital details from her memory may have been lost or she may add things for no apparent reason.
The main topic of discussion in the source is the toilet habits of her new guests, "The children went round the house urinating on the walls" and then goes on to say " Although we told the children and there mother off about this filthy habit they took no notice and our house stank to high heaven." This does not sound like a woman who is very pleased with her evacuees. A lot of this was going on as there were many complaints all over the country abut the disgusting hygiene an habits the people had such as bed wetting, "fouling" in the garden, and the fact that some of them had never brushed there teeth up until when they were living in the hosts establishment. The fact that the house did have two toilets though means they could have been doing all this because they wanted to go home so thought if they make a nuisance of themselves then the government would send them packing.
Source F is from an actual evacuee expressing there anger for the prejudice abut evacuees that has been spread that it was always poor people going to rich houses and some times it was the complete opposite.
"It is just as upsetting for a clean and well educated child to find itself in a grubby semi slum as the other way round." And also says at the beginning, "How I wish the common view of evacuees could be changed." Both of these comments show that he is not happy being stereotyped as poor unhygienic boys for no reason that he can prevent. A lot of prejudice was going around at the time so the primary source is backed up by facts as well. Source G is also about how people were prejudice towards the evacuees just because the majority of them were poor. Some people thought it was great that they were coming to stay at there place though, because they were so poor and in some cases na�ve they were made to work in the hosts shop for free.
Source G is a shot paragraph from a story wrote for children in 1973 about evacuees and what life was like for them.
It shows some more prejudice behaviour from hosts at the time towards there new arrivals in there homes as she thinks that the reason that they have no slippers is because they are to poor to afford it but the real reason is they had no room in there suit cases to pack them. Although in the story the children found it funny I think it was wrong that people should be treated in a certain way before even getting to know them.
Source H is a poster with a picture of two children hugging each other, In the background it has been split into two. One area is a nice quiet village in the country side and the other is the dirty city with planes flying over it, the designer for the poster has done this so u get a picture of how dramatically you can change the children's way of life just by becoming a foster.
The poster sets out to make people think that they can be heros just by fostering a few children whilst the war is on with quotes like "You may be saving a child's life" This would make a foster person think that they are helping the war cause and doing there bit for the country. It is a primary source from the time and was issued by the government to encourage people to foster children and I think it would have been very successful the because of way in which they went about making the poster.
Source I is part of a mass observation survey that one man decided to take part in a sat how he felt about evacuation. It was taken May 1940 so is a primary source and is very reliable.
The man and the interviewer discuss the topic of what the man is going to do with his son "I'm not letting him go. They can't be looked after where they're sending him" This shows some of the country wasn't as willing as others and didn't trust the people who were going to look after there children. He also talks of how there wasn't enough food to feed the people before the war so this may have been one of the biggest concerns for parents sending there children away, that they wouldn't be looked after properly. I would say without a doubt that this source is completely against the idea of evacuation and is therefore contradicting the quote "evacuation was a great success"
My over all opinion is that you could not call the evacuation a success at all as there was to many complications involved such as difference in up bringing, costs quite a lot for the hosts, people didn't trust the system, some people were rebellious against the hosts and finally it made a new kind of prejudice and there is enough of that around already. I must admit a lot of lives were saved and in some cases people enjoyed having evacuees in there houses and said it was so much fun it took there mind of the war. If evacuation didn't take place a lot of people in built up areas like London would have been killed for sure so it id have its good points that saved the British population but overall I would disagree and say no, evacuation was not a great success, it was I good idea but not a success.

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