Archive for the ‘military’ Category

“Eyes right,” the Senior Wren all but screamed, “And stand straight woman.” Catherine came to attention more or less correctly, this time remembering where to place her thumbs. “You are not in Tonbridge bloody Wells now,” the Senior Wren continued to berate her, “This is the Royal Navy,” she continued. Catherine Havers felt every nerve […]


Following on from yesterday’s story here is another true account of the caning of some wrens, this time from the early 1970s. Shortly after this time women were included within the Royal Navy proper and would have been, in theory at least, protected from such sanctions. This was sent in by one of our regular […]


Ticked Off

20Aug15

“Elisabeth Anne Whitfield did not join the WRNS to be consigned to the backside of history,” The haughty brunette made a pout and wrinkled up her nose in disgust. It did not occur to her that speaking aloud in the third person sounded somewhat arrogant, or at least it never had during the first 25 […]


I unearthed a slightly new take on the spanking and caning of wrens prior to them being incorporated into the Royal navy proper. I also came across a new expression, ‘marrying the gunner’s daughter,’ as opposed to kissing it, which means getting a caning. There was also some light shed on the official position. The […]


Here’s one of those little forum finds you so love. I have no context whatsoever for this and apart from some small edits I publish it as is. I am not sure if this is UK-based or American experience, but my guess is that it is from the US. Elizabeth_2 wrote: Yes I got that, […]


A little known and now forgotten event took place during the Second World War, some of the details of which were reported in a magazine published back int the 1980s. I have only a photostat of a long letter carried by the publication and many more details we forthcoming, but here is what I was able […]


Here is an intriguing subject that has been covered here many times before. But I recently received an email from a reader who while liking my short story the Special Section, said it was somewhat undermined by its far-fetched in-service punishment set-up. Usually I wouldn’t care so much as one hopes given the nature of […]


“Gentlemen, should you spank your wife?” ran a headline in 1950s gentleman’s magazine. The response was mixed, but a vox pop conducted the same year and published in another magazine widely concluded that they should. In 1949 a US judge even made a ruling in court that he did not see why a loving husband […]


Wayward Wren

22Jan14

Audrey stood at the end of the long concrete road with a sense of trepidation. The wire gate looked as flimsy as a Christmas decoration, but the seaman in blue with a 303 at his shoulder said otherwise. Beyond him were a row of poplar trees standing as sentries on either side of the driveway […]


Some time ago I came across a little piece of military history regarding the home front and the use of photography for keeping up the morale of men off fighting. Certainly by the time of both the Crimean War and the American Civil War photography was available to the officer classes among the British, French […]