Thanks to the Guardian for letting me air my views on the Worksop British Legion, their inadequacies have been swept under the carpet for far too long as they let down our mothers who were the real unsung heroes.
I would like to clear things a little with Elaine the Worksop branch secretary. Many other branches of the RBL did a fantastic job but there were many that did a poor job and were not fit for purpose.
I would recommend reading ‘Wars Forgotten Women’ which you will find not only adds weight to my argument but explores their hardships and suffering better than I can possibly take the time to write in a newspaper letter.
My father was killed on the 4th or 5th of December 1942, and my mother sent an airmail on the 11th of December which said ‘George, when you sit down for your Christmas dinner just think of us here at home as we shall be thinking of you at the same time.’ Father was already dead and it wasn’t until the 14th, that we were notified of this! Yet still we received no support at all from the Worksop branch, just had to get on with life as best you could minus a husband, father, breadwinner and role model.
I remember a nice lady called Mrs Dane who used to invite us in to her table saying that she couldn’t see us go hungry in the knowledge that our father had died fighting for the country. It’s a good thing some folks had a good heart or we would have been near starvation!
There was another good fellow by the name of Phil Tucker who managed to get my mum’s rent reduced.
John Mann never told me if he had received a reply from the letter he sent to the RBL in London. I had to write to the WWA in London and was told that the chairman of the Worksop RBL should never have excluded the war widows, why Mr Mann couldn’t have given me that answer I will never know!
War Widow’s Son