Memories of Second World War evacuees shared in new book

A new book - ‘A Long Way From Home’ - tells the fascinating stories of 40 children evacuated from Lowestoft during the Second World War.

A new book - ‘A Long Way From Home’ - tells the fascinating stories of 40 children evacuated from Lowestoft during the Second World War. Picture: Clive Capps - Credit: Clive Capps

A new book providing a fascinating insight into the experiences of 40 wartime evacuees is launching next week.

About 3,000 children and their teachers from Lowestoft and the surrounding area left on special trains from Lowestoft Railway Station as they were evacuated 80 years ago.

They did not know their destination or what would happen on their arrival.

Now, the new book - ‘A Long Way From Home’ - written by former evacuee Clive Capps and author Sandra Delf, will be launched at the same rail station they departed from next Monday, December 14.

A new book - ‘A Long Way From Home’ - tells the fascinating stories of 40 children evacuated from Lowestoft during the Second World War.

A new book - ‘A Long Way From Home’ - tells the fascinating stories of 40 children evacuated from Lowestoft during the Second World War. Picture: Clive Capps - Credit: Clive Capps

It contains the personal accounts of 40 children, now aged in their 80s and 90s, and gives an insight into what it was like to be a child evacuee.

On June 2, 1940 around 3,000 children were evacuated to Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire, as small towns and villages subsequently became host to many of them.

Eighty years on, many of the friendships made then are cherished today and, through the work of the Lowestoft Evacuees Association - founded by Lowestoft man Chris Brooks more than 30 years ago - the memories and the connections made remain strong.

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Co- Author Clive Capps was five when he was evacuated along with his older brother, Carl.

Mr Capps said: “We compiled the stories featured in ‘A Long Way from Home’ as we wanted to capture these important memories and preserve them for future generations.

"The mass evacuation of children is such an important part of the history of this country and the stories featured recognise many unsung heroes of the Second World War.”

In his foreword for the book, chairman of the British Evacuees Association, James Roffey, said; “It is a great idea to mark the 80th anniversary year of the Lowestoft evacuees leaving by collecting their experiences together to create this fascinating and informative book."

Taking the authors over two years to research, A Long Way From Home is priced at £11.99 and available to purchase from the Community Rail Shop and Tourist Information Office at Lowestoft Railway Station from December 14.

Copies of the book will also be available by mail order, for details please email: lowestoftcentral@gmail.com

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