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 Post subject: CS girls during the war
PostPosted: 05 Jun 2019, 16:37 
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ISTR that Tan once started a drabble about Polly Heriot being part of the Special Operations Executive, and that Finn wrote a drabble about Juliet working at Bletchley Park. Miss Annersley does tell us in Goes To It that Nancy, Ida, Anne, Elsie and Irene (I think?) are in the Wrens, but we don’t seem to hear much else about what CS girls are doing during the war. The BBC were interviewing some women earlier about their war work, and I wondered what the CS girls - the British and American girls, and also those in Occupied Europe (French Resistance?) - might have been doing. Any suggestions :D ?

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 Post subject: Re: CS girls during the war
PostPosted: 05 Jun 2019, 19:47 
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Fiona (abbeygirl) started one about Rosalie being SOE as well, ISTR

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 Post subject: Re: CS girls during the war
PostPosted: 05 Jun 2019, 21:28 
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(Slightly off-topic) Not the girls, but the domestic staff, who were probably little older than the Seniors - I always thought it interesting that three of the maids, Annette, Olivette and Dulcie, were specifically described as now doing war work. Annette and Olivette are in the WRNS and Dulcie is a lorry-driver (Lavender).


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 Post subject: Re: CS girls during the war
PostPosted: 05 Jun 2019, 22:27 
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I think EBD's making the point that the CS is having to manage with an unsatisfactory maid who doesn't have proper parlour manners and, even worse, isn't pretty, as if they're making some great sacrifice for the war effort :roll: :roll: .

I always think that Miss Bubb deserves some credit for coming out of retirement and going back into teaching because she wants to do her bit. I don't think we're told how old she is, but presumably over the age at which she'd have been expected to register for work.

I wonder if any of the CS girls became Land Girls. I don't think EBD ever mentions them, but there's a nice chapter in which Robin and Daisy and some of the mistresses go (I think?) hop-picking.

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 Post subject: Re: CS girls during the war
PostPosted: 07 Jun 2019, 22:07 
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One of the fillers (can't remember which one) has one of the girls blithely gossiping away in a Lyons Corner House about working in Bletchley even though it was completely secret until the 1970s.


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 Post subject: Re: CS girls during the war
PostPosted: 07 Jun 2019, 22:55 
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Mia wrote:
One of the fillers (can't remember which one) has one of the girls blithely gossiping away in a Lyons Corner House about working in Bletchley even though it was completely secret until the 1970s.
I'd find that very hard to believe. I knew someone who had worked at Bletchley and they were obviously very strongly conditioned (I hesitate to say brain-washed but it sounds rather like it) not to talk about their work from the moment they left to go home until they arrived back on the premises. Enid was still unable to tell me anything at all about it fifty years later, and she'd told me a good deal about her life otherwise, as context for the items she gave the museum.


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 Post subject: Re: CS girls during the war
PostPosted: 07 Jun 2019, 23:14 
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One of the people interviewed on the BBC for D-Day said that she'd never been able to tell her own dad about Bletchley, because he died in ... the early '70s, I think. I like the idea of CS girls working there, but talking about it in coffee houses definitely sounds strange :roll: !!

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 Post subject: Re: CS girls during the war
PostPosted: 15 Jun 2019, 13:00 
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Alison H wrote:
One of the people interviewed on the BBC for D-Day said that she'd never been able to tell her own dad about Bletchley, because he died in ... the early '70s, I think. I like the idea of CS girls working there, but talking about it in coffee houses definitely sounds strange :roll: !!

Not if it's Joey!

Actually, Joey's language abilities would definitely have come in handy with deciphering codes.


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 Post subject: Re: CS girls during the war
PostPosted: 15 Jun 2019, 21:17 
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[quote="Lotte"
Actually, Joey's language abilities would definitely have come in handy with deciphering codes.[/quote]

I think code-breakers need logic skills, not something I would have associated with Joey. She learns her languages by ear (in one of the early books, it's suggested that she's not very good at German as aa academic subject) and she appears to be poor at (or at least uninterested in) maths.

I could see her languages being useful in intercepting spoken word transmissions or in liaison work but not in decoding.


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 Post subject: Re: CS girls during the war
PostPosted: 15 Jun 2019, 22:40 
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There was definitely a role for linguists, though. Jo might not have had the cryptographic skills, but her knowledge of french, german, italian and russian (and belsornian, and romany) would surely have been useful....


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