Horsted Keynes pupils relive war evacuation

Pupils from St Giles Primary School in Horsted Keynes SUS-141215-151647001
Pupils from St Giles Primary School in Horsted Keynes SUS-141215-151647001

In 1939, at the start of the Second World War children and other vulnerable people were evacuated from London and other British cities.

More than three million travelled to the relative safety of the countryside as part of Operation Pied Piper.

In an event organised by the Horsted Cahagnes Society to mark the 75th Anniversary, pupils from St Giles Primary School in Horsted Keynes, West Sussex relived the evacuation on Saturday, 22nd November.

Clutching gas mask boxes, Identity Cards and labelled for the journey, they travelled by steam train on the Bluebell Railway and learned how the railways managed the vast undertaking, and a little of what it must have been like to be parted from family and friends. They returned to Horsted Keynes Village Hall, converted into a WVS Billeting Centre for the occasion, for a wartime tea of fish paste and spam sandwiches, rock cakes and barley water.

Report and picture contributed by Glyn Genin.