Wartime evacuee unites with host family relative

Judith Clinkard, (left) of Adel, Leeds, the granddaughter of the host family who looked after WW2 evacuee Pauline Jenkins, right.
Judith Clinkard, (left) of Adel, Leeds, the granddaughter of the host family who looked after WW2 evacuee Pauline Jenkins, right.
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A former wartime evacuee paid an emotional visit to Leeds to meet a relative of the family who cared for her over 70 years ago.

Pauline Jenkins, 82, travelled up from London to visit Judith Clinkard, 66, the granddaughter of the couple who took her into their home in 1942.

The wedding of Judith's parents Dorothy and Ernest, with bridesmaid Pauline pictured far right.

The wedding of Judith's parents Dorothy and Ernest, with bridesmaid Pauline pictured far right.

At the age of 11, Pauline had been dispatched up to Yorkshire by her mother when London became too frightening for the youngster.

She landed in Crigglestone, Wakefield, where she was sent to live with Elizabeth and James Senior for the next three years - even becoming bridesmaid at the wedding of their daughter Dorothy - Judith’s mother - in 1945, before she returned home after VJ day.

Pauline said her husband managed to track Judith down on the internet in Adel, where she now lives, and the pair met up to spend an afternoon reminiscing.

Pauline said: “It went well. We looked at lots of photos. We had lots to talk about.

“Her family treated me very well and they are very nice and kind. I was a very shy child. I couldn’t understand the accent at first because it appeared to me to be quite strong. But of course I came back home with the accent. ”

She said she still remembers arriving in Crigglestone and waiting to be meet her host family.

“We were all in this chapel - lots of children. I remember sitting on the floor and somebody came said where we were going. Judith told me her grandmother had wanted a girl.”

Pauline had briefly visited the family after the war, in the 1950s, when she met Judith as a young child - and a photo was taken of the occasion.

Judith said: “The picture has been in the family album and it was always ‘that’s Pauline from London’, which obviously seemed like a long way away in those days.

“It was nice that she wanted to get in touch. She was obviously someone that I had known about and to actually meet her was lovely. We had a lovely afternoon talking about what she remembered. It was wonderful really.”

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