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April 19, 2022

Fascinating Black and White Photos of Life in Britain in 1939

After the German invasion of Poland, The King declared war in September 1939.

In preparation for war, Britain undertakes measures including calling up of troops, citizens returning home from abroad, children rehearsing safety drills. The government also thought of all the possible dangers and difficulties the Home Front would face and started to take precautions. 

Boys release toy balloons bearing appeals for the Doctor Barnardo's Home at Stepney, London, August 1939

Take a look at life in Britain in 1939 through these fascinating black and white photographs taken by Gerry Cranham:

The ladies' rifle team of Downe House School in Berkshire set out for a practice session with their guns, April 1939

Boys of the Duke of York's Military School at Dover dressed as toy soldiers, April 1939

Notices have been posted outside public buildings calling upon those men eligible, to register for military training under the Military Training Act, May 1939

The under-15 Harp Solo contest, part of the Eisteddfod Festival, in Denbeigh, August 1939

Boys release toy balloons bearing appeals for the Doctor Barnardo's Home at Stepney, London, August 1939

A group of men read the guarantee in a tailor's window promising service in spite of the threat of war, August 1939

Little Neville Mooney of Fulham, the first baby born in London after the declaration of war, in the arms of a nurse at Queen Charlotte Maternity Hospital, September 1939

Britons living abroad queue up outside the passport office in Westminster, September 1939

Eton schoolboys are back to school with top hats and gas masks, September 1939

Eton schoolboys are back to school with top hats and gas masks, September 1939

Children who have been evacuated from London to a country house in Surrey line up for their daily dose of medicine, September 1939

Stockwell Tube Station in London, September 1939

Women at the Food Executive Office in London prepare ration books from the National Registration returns, October 1939

British actress Elsa Buchanan does her bit during World War II by forking hay at a farm in Surrey, October 1939

London schoolchildren evacuated to Wiltshire having lessons in the South Gallery of Lacock Abbey, November 1939

Evacuated schoolchildren enjoying an art class in a makeshift classroom in the South gallery of Lacock Abbey, Wiltshire, November 1939

A soldier leaving a London railway station to re-join his unit took along a sprig of mistletoe to make sure he got his Christmas kiss, December 1939




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