AN EVACUEE by Leslie Scrase
The year is 1939 and the Wallace family are on holiday in Bognor Regis when war
is declared. For each family member this news brings differing expectations,
but little does eight-year-old Roger realise that his happy childhood world,
shared with three brothers and a sister and his best friend Jimmy Smith, is
about to be turned upside down.
Roger, his brother Gerry and sister Margaret are evacuated. He is separated from
them and moved from home to home through no fault of his own; often left with
totally unsuitable guardians and experiencing the torment of being an
At first he copes with this situation because others from his school, including
Jimmy, are also evacuated in the area, but when most go back home in 1942 he
becomes lonely and resorts to desperate measures to avoid his anticipated fate.
This childhood wartime story is full of real characters such as ‘Old Sam’ and his hilarious escapade in the churchyard with the vicar’s wife, vicar and sexton; and later in the story there is the sad and
frightening tale of the
‘Skimmington’ and poor Gertie who had broken the ‘moral code’.
The author was himself evacuated twice and draws considerably on his own
experiences, giving this captivating story a truly authentic feel.
The author was born in Addiscombe, East Croydon. He was evacuated in 1939 and
again in 1940, which led to his attendance at Selhurst Grammar School followed
by Shebbear College in North Devon.
After his National Service in the Royal Navy he went to Richmond College, London
University. Trained as a Methodist Minister, he worked in many places around
Britain and also in South India, where he was Principal of an adult training
In 1977 Leslie Scrase created his own business in Surrey: Alpha Cars, a
chauffeur driven service mostly for businessmen and the stars. Leaving his
business in 1996, he now concentrates on his work as a Humanist Celebrant,
lecturer and author.
A Prized Pupil! and A Reluctant Seaman continue the story of Roger Wallace which the author started in his book An Evacuee, and whilst remaining works of fiction all three books are drawn closely from his own life
Twice married, he and Wendy share fifteen grandchildren. In their spare time they are to be found at their home