July 28, 2021

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How Malvern won the war but carrots got the credit!

I’m Anne Diamond.

Well, that picture is of me some years ago (!) when I lived in Malvern, with my mum Marguerite, dad Jimmy, sisters Sue and Louise and dog, Chips! (I mention Chips because already I’ve been contacted by the boy-next-door who remembers Chips nipping him…!)

I’m trying to compile a social history of what it was like to live in Malvern in the Radar Years – from May 1942, when around 2,000 scientists suddenly found themselves in Malvern, and remained a Top Secret right through the war, their vital work and very existence shielded by the wonderful imposing Malvern Hills.

I was a radar kid, brought up in a world where everyone’s dad – and a lot of mums too – were scientists who never spoke a word about what they did.

That’s why their story needs to be told now – not in clinical scientific terms, nor even through a historian’s eyes, but through their families’ memories, stories and reflections. If you are a radar kid, like me, you’ll have a story to tell.

Maybe your mum and dad did tell you in later years some of their secret tales. How strange and odd were some of those scientific geniuses (does anyone remember the tip-top physicist who wore bizarre clothes at the weekend, took his kids on walks at the end of a rope, and carried baskets of groceries on his head?

I have written a short piece to get us all going. And included some photos I’ve found. Please take part and let’s see what sort of snapshot of social history we can together create:

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