By Betty Armitage
A few years in the past, journalist Nicholas Webley stumbled throughout a striking locate in the course of a regimen research in a small residence in Norfolk - a diary.
The diary used to be stored throughout the struggle years and scribbled for the main half in class workout books and on scraps of decomposing paper. It was once written by means of a seamstress born within the 1880's. Betty Armitage, the seamstress, used to be a theatrical cloth cabinet in the course of the first a part of the century and moved to Norfolk ahead of the warfare. Her diary is uncommon, because it perspectives the occasions of the warfare throughout the eyes of somebody born round the time of Queen Victoria's Jubilee. such a lot of bills of the conflict are in keeping with army event or lifestyles in towns in the course of the Blitz; the following the nice occasions of these years are seen from the rustic: privation relieved through the occasional poached pheasant, upheaval as hundreds of thousands of shiny younger US servicemen 'invade' East Anglia, quiet heroes and small-time rural villains. A time which turns out typical to us this day via movie, yet which was once relatively one other age, springs to existence within the pages of Betty's Diary; humorous, touching and unaffectedly vibrant.
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Extra info for Betty's Wartime Diary 1939-1945
Ted Sturgess The local dealer in small quantities of timber and the like. Tyke A puppy who was, by any measure, most fortunate. Harry Wainwright Lived just outside Ilminster, Somerset. He had one of the best dog acts in the business. He gave Monty and Ruby, two terrier puppies to Betty and Mr Head. Freddie Walton A local black marketer, twenty-ish. He was a helpful boy and an indispensable person to those he supplied. He was always cheerful, but often reckless and a true entrepreneur. He failed his Army medical due to the after effects of a childhood illness, which he did not make public.
We put them in the old shed for the night and Freddie said he would come round tomorrow to build them a run and somewhere to sleep. 32 B E T T Y ’ S W A R T I M E D I A RY 1 9 3 9 - 1 9 4 5 • P A R T O N E FRIDAY 27th Freddie came round just after eleven this morning with the trailer on his bike loaded with wood and wire-netting. He has built a lovely hut and run for the chickens in the part of the garden that catches the sun and is out of the wind. He is very clever with his hands. Jack showed me a casualty list that was in the paper a few days ago.
The last one at the Lyceum in ‘35. She doesn’t think she will do one again. I wondered why anyone should bother this year as there will not be many children in London to see it. W E A R E WA R R I O R S A L L • S E P T E M B E R 1 9 3 9 – C H R I S T M A S 1 9 4 0 37 MONDAY 20th Mrs. Wentworth said at the meeting tonight that as the news has been so bad just lately, it might be a good idea if we had the occasional talk about what was going on, so that people don’t get upset and worried for no good reason.