Imagine if someone knocked on your door tonight and said that invasion by the enemy was imminent. “Pack a small bag for your children and have them at the harbour early tomorrow morning so they can be evacuated to a safer place.” That’s exactly what happened on Guernsey in the Channel Islands in June 1940. The British government of the day decided that troops couldn’t be spared to defend the island. Four fifths of the children and almost half Guernsey’s population managed to leave for England prior to the attack. Parents farewelled their children at the dock on 19 June. Sadly, due to the limited number of boats and lack of time, not all those who wished to be evacuated left the island prior to the attack. The island was occupied by the Germans for the following five long and difficult years.
It was whilst I was researching Guernsey for an upcoming trip that I discovered a movie had been adapted from the 2008 novel by Mary Ann Shaffer & Annie Barrows; The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. It’s a romance/drama that tells the story of a writer who is intrigued by the stories of the Guernsey people who survived the World War II occupation. I loved everything about this film: the characters, the scenery, the stories and knowing that it’s loosely based on historical events made it even more poignant. Yes, I laughed and cried at times along with many others in the cinema but I noticed that everyone was smiling as they left.
I’m now even more excited about visiting this little island in the English Channel off the coast of Normandy.
To read more about Guernsey and the stories of WWII go to Visit Guernsey
Let me know what you think of this beautiful movie. xxx