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Mrs Preedy’s account of her wartime experiences is useful as she has based her account on her own contemporaneous diaries. The diaries will, however, likely be dominated by the discomforts she experienced (being separated from her friends, with ‘cold’ hosts, in their cold home). We are not told how old Mrs Preedy was at the time of her evacuation or how long she was evacuated for but her unhappiness with the experience is palpable.For one 10 year old (source 11), the contemporaneous account we are given is very basic. After enquiring as to her mother’s health, she says that she doesn’t like her hosts’ faces but refers to not having seen the lady in daylight. We might infer from this that the letter was written soon after a night-time arrival and these first impressions are from a child searching for signs of friendliness in her hosts, and only finding it in their dog. While the letter is not detailed, there is significant value in this child’s immediate response to her new environment.Mr Kops’ autobiography, written almost twenty years after the end of the war, recounts his awe at the cleanliness and lavishness of his new surroundings (source 10). Mr Kops was evacuated from a poor district of London to a Buckinghamshire village, making the transition from a poor working class household to a middle class home. Mr Kops does not describe his hosts, or the other evacuees he was billeted with; his recollections are solely on the material benefits of his new environment (such as hot tap water and an indoor loo!). While Mr Kops’ autobiography is not based on notes he made during the war, his account reads as though the unadulterated joy of discovering this new lifestyle is still very much fresh in his mind. Further, his transition from a working class to a middle class home appears to have been as wondrous as Mrs Preedy’s transition from a middle class to working class environment was traumatic.


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