War Child is a story about the Evacuee Archive: how it comes into being, the man who created it and what he has experienced. War Child intends to explore and document the life of this archive, to lyrically evoke its qualities and – virtually – extend its scope.
The Evacuee Archive is primarily – though not exclusively - paper-based. It is comprised of varied types of written, and some recorded, materials and thus embraces many voices. It also contains a small number of artifacts. It is the largest resource of its kind outside London’s Imperial War Museum and continues to grow. Its location at the Museum of English Rural Life (MERL) in Reading lends it form.
It contains a range of research materials gathered and produced by Martin Parsons throughout his ongoing career as a historian of Second World War child evacuation, and as a teacher. Martin worked for many years as a lecturer at the University, within the Institute of Education, and has now retired.
More about the Evacuee Archive can be found at https://www.reading.ac.uk/merl/collections/Archives_A_to_Z/merl-D_EVAC.aspx