20 June 1997

Land Girls deserve it…

I am right behind Mrs Proctors efforts to get recognition for the Womens Land Army (Farmlife, June 6).

At the end of my service I received a letter of thanks from my county secretary and one from Buckingham Palace but it would be very nice if all ex-WLA members could receive a medal.

I worked on four farms during the period Aug 39-Sept 45, some good some bad but all hard work. Most of the time at night I could cycle a few miles and see bombs falling on Plymouth and Exeter and the resulting fires, which spurred you on to work on the land rather than be in a town.

I was not harassed by male workers but of course you must never be ill. We were expected to work in all weathers and do the same jobs as the men, some very dirty. Haymaking and harvesting were hard work in those days – certainly no one would do it now. Milking and calf rearing were routine. I think I had one weeks holiday and a few half days in the whole war.

Mrs Barbara Cork

Upton Pyne, Devon.