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February 26, 2014

Evacuations of Civilians in Britain During World War II

The evacuation of civilians in Britain during the Second World War was designed to save civilians in Britain, particularly children, from the risks associated with aerial bombing of cities by moving them to areas thought to be less at risk.

Operation Pied Piper, which began on September 1, 1939, officially relocated more than 3.5 million people. Further waves of official evacuation and re-evacuation occurred from the South and East coast in June 1940, when a seaborne invasion was expected, and from affected cities after the Blitz began in September 1940.

There were also official evacuations from the UK to other parts of the British Empire, and many non-official evacuations within and from the UK. Other mass movements of civilians included British citizens arriving from the Channel Islands, and displaced people arriving from continental Europe.

A group of boy evacuees with their gas masks, September 1939.

Neville Mooney, the first baby born in Britain as the country went to war, in his gas mask with his parents.

Mothers and child evacuees at Victoria Station, 2nd September 1939.

East End evacuees on their way to the station, 2nd September 1939.

Young child evacuees, September 1939.

Child evacuees on their way to the station, September 1939.

LPTB men helping blind schoolchildren evacuees, September 1939.

Mothers at a station barrier, September 1939.

The Imperial War Museum Naval Gallery after being bombed, 31st January 1941.

A group of civilians queuing to try out their gas mask in a gas testing chamber, 1939.

(via Telegraph)


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