History of the Amersham Area

Homefires and Havens exhibition

Amersham Museum’s 1940s exhibition for 2015

See a timeline of local and national events in the 1940s

Homefires poster A3

Read Roger Moore’s memories of skating on Shardeloes lake in 1940

Special talks 

To complement the 1940s Homefires and Havens exhibition, Amersham Museum planned three special talks for 2015.  In September local historian, Alison Bailey, shared the fascinating lives of The Formidable Women of Chesham Bois in the 1940s. Alison coordinates the Chesham Bois History Group and her talk provided an insight into the experiences and achievements of local women during and after the Second World War.

The second talk in the series was in October by Julie Summers, an author who wrote the book Jambusters, a history of the Women’s Institute during the Second World War on which the ITV series Homefires is based.  Fashion on the Ration was the story of wartime clothing and fashion – a tale of two halves – with, on the one hand, the fashion industry’s production of utility clothes for the home market, while on the other, the ‘make do and mend’ worn by the man or woman on the street.

November’s talk highlighted Latimer House’s vital role for British intelligence services in the Second World War. From 1942 Latimer House was an interrogation centre for German prisoners of war. The POW’s were secretly bugged and their conversations listened to by German refugees working for the British. Author and eminent historian Helen Fry has worked with surviving ‘Listeners’ to tell their incredible story. Helen gave the talk alongside one of the last surviving Latimer ‘Listeners’, Fritz Lustig.