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Some aspects of local life were the same during the War as they had been before. Adverts, news of properties for sale, notifications of church services and reports of local accidents are all there.

Handley Page Halifax Mk III - Yorkshire Air Museum

These are often indistinguishable from those in peace-time. They tell us about rationing, changes in the role of women, trade union disputes, conscientious objectors.


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They also tell us about the casualties of war. These are listings of local soldiers who died in WW1 and WW2.

The Pier Goes To War: Halifax’s Pier 21 and the Second World War

They give valuable details, like dates and page references, which indicate when deaths were covered in local papers. The birth, marriage and death columns and listings of local service personnel who died have been indexed. These can then be used to search the digitised papers. Note : Aggregate listings of deaths in the armed forces appear in the Courier on 7th August and 5th August We are grateful to Calderdale Libraries' local history volunteers for the hard work they have put into creating this index.

The newspapers are available in pdf format, on the basis of one pdf per issue, for example Saturday 4th November Note : We had no hard copies to digitise 6th February and 27th March or 5th February and 29th July Each volunteer was interviewed by a WVS board member to assess their aptitude. Registration cards were created for each interviewee listing details of her education, skills, and abilities, availability and services they would like to offer.

Volunteers worked in a number of service areas depending on their abilities.

Women with nursing skills worked with the Red Cross, other volunteers knit socks for the Navy, and some taught dancing classes for servicemen. Once assigned, each volunteer's placements were tracked on a Placement Card, providing a detailed history of her volunteer service.

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Note the use of a punch card system to easily sort by name, availability and services. The WVS records are a compelling testament to the energy, community spirit, professional organization and dedication of civilian volunteers intent on helping with the war effort.

As well as documenting the exemplary services provided by the women of Halifax, these records are a treasure for genealogists. Another rich resource for genealogists is the Directory of Households provided by the postal service presumably so that the WVS could send out mass-mailings.

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WVS Registration Cards. Sample Registration Card - anonymized for privacy CR