Marjorie Dean remembers VE Day
“That day was known as VE Day and the whole free world celebrated. On VE Night, as it was called, everyone in the village was so happy we kissed everyone in sight. It’s a good job I didn’t catch up with Robert. As many lights were turned on as they could find, but we still had to light up our candle in our bedroom to wash.
When we were all dressed up, all the girls decided to walk to the Station Hotel a couple of miles up the road. Of course we didn’t have very much money as usual, so we were on the cider trail again, accepting as many free drinks as we were offered.
The old piano was pumping out all the old wartime songs, we were all laughing and crying at the same time. Oh what a night it was. We were able to stay until Last Drinks please’. It wasn’t till we were on our way home, when I heard ‘Johnny Zero, Johnny Zero’. Now that was the first time that I had heard our distress call. Even we land girls had our own rules and ethics and, whenever one of us needed any help at any time, Johnny Zero was the SOS call. We rallied round and saved one of the girls from an over amorous service man.
When we got back to the village we saw the girls back to their billets, stood them up by their front doors and ran away. I didn’t realise that Vi was giggling more than usual, so when we were near our cottage, I told her to be quiet when we got home.
We crept in hoping Auntie wouldn’t hear from the living room and started going up the stairs. Halfway up Vi started to giggle. Auntie then came upstairs and asked what was wrong with Vi. I said we felt so happy that the war was over. ‘All right, my girlies, I’ll speak to you in the morning.’ I was glad when Vi eventually got to sleep as Auntie Lil’s bedroom was next to ours and she had to walk through ours first.
After breakfast, before we went off to work, Auntie looked very serious and said, ‘I thought I had always told you girlies to behave yourselves.’ We both looked at her and said, ‘We have, Auntie, we would never let you down,’ and gave her a great big kiss.”
Marjorie M. Dean, The Women’s Land Army and Me (Edinburgh: Pentland, 1995), p.98.