WW2 Evacuation Facts

Here are some facts about the evacuation of children and mothers from cities to the countryside which took place in Britain during World War 2.

  • The evacuation of children from cities to the countryside in order to keep them safe from air raids began in September 1939.

  • Many of London’s children were sent to Wales, Cornwall or Devon. Children were also evacuated to other rural areas, such as East Anglia.
  • The children who were evacuated were known as evacuees and the families they stayed with in the countryside were called host families.


  • Several thousand children were evacuated overseas to Canada, Australia and the United States.
  • The children travelled on special trains from the city to their host families. Many were too young to understand exactly what was happening and many thought they were going on a holiday. Most of the evacuees were sad to say goodbye to their parents and homes.
  • The evacuees were all given a gas mask and they had food for the journey to the countryside. Every child had a label pinned to their clothing. This label stated the child’s name, home address, school and destination.
  • Although some evacuees didn’t enjoy their evacuation, many of the children adapted really well to country life. They became friends with the local children and, in many cases, stayed in touch with their host family after the end of World War 2.
  • It wasn’t just children who were evacuated. Mothers of very young children, pregnant women, disabled people and some teachers were evacuated. The evacuated teachers stayed in the same village as their evacuated classes.
  • Efforts were made to keep evacuated brothers and sisters together, but this wasn’t always possible.
  • Evacuees and their parents would keep in touch by writing letters to each other.
  • Many of the children who were evacuated in 1939 returned home by 1940 because Britain wasn’t heavily bombed by the Germans in the first months of WW2. When the Blitz began children were sent back to the countryside.

Evacuation Poster

  • It is estimated that over 3 million people (mostly children) were evacuated during World War 2.
  • The official in charge of finding a home for the evacuees was called the Billeting Officer.

What next? Discover more World War 2 facts, learn about how those who remained in Britain’s cities sheltered during air raids, or find out about the Battle of Britain.

57 thoughts to “WW2 Evacuation Facts”

  1. wow this really helped me with my world war 2 homework
    5 Stars 🙂

  2. this was a great help in my homework! thanks

  3. This is fantastic for my homework. It help me for my homework poster. Thank you James

  4. Well… looks like this website has saved many people the effort of actually picking up a WWII book… :p i kid of course, you’ve practically, done my homework for me ;p… so thanks a lot!

  5. This website was brilliant! defiantly helped me finish my essay; keep the great information up!! 😀

  6. Wow!!!! This website is amazing I will use it every time I get home work it’s fab!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  7. This website helped me a lot when it came to my history test thxs

  8. thank you ever so much it helped me i am so interested in world war 2 now

  9. this was excellent it helped me great with my drama homework on the evacuess thankyou very much james..

  10. yea a really good homework help website thanks a lot it really helped 🙂 xx

  11. thanks alot!! u helped me with my homework! yay!!!

  12. This was a nice website, congratawelldone on this mate!

  13. Wow such an amazing website. Thanks a lot, this will help with my history essay

  14. This page is so informative! Thank you for making this page, I love it! this information helped me with my homework, and I had an A+ !!!! Thank you for making this page!!!!! WOW!

  15. This is great help for my history essay. Thank you!

    1. Glad we were able to help you with your essay, Luke. Thanks for letting us know.

    1. It helped me with my homework alot !! Thanks so much ! Whoever made this

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.