Packed off to the country from Portsmouth with wellies and an apple

Portsmouth evacuees leave the city, June 1940
Portsmouth evacuees leave the city, June 1940
Monty and Melissa Borthwick with their very own Spice Girl, Olivia

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Thousands of Portsmouth children were evacuated from the city in the early years of the Second World War.

They were part of 1.3 million people who were moved from cities likely to be targeted by the German bombers.

Across Britain 827,000 schoolchildren and their teachers were evacuated along with 524,000 mums with children under five, 12,000 pregnant women and some disabled people.

In addition to their gas mask and identity cards they were allowed to take:

Boys: two vests and two pairs of pants; a pair of trousers; two pairs of socks; six handkerchiefs and one pullover.

Girls: a vest; one pair of pants; a petticoat; two pairs of stockings; six handerchiefs; a slip; a blouse and a cardigan.

Other items they could pack in their suitcases included: a pair of wellies; plimsolls; a mackintosh, a comb and an apple.

All today’s pictures were rediscovered recently in The News archive. They were taken in Portsmouth and the surrounding area during the war.