We are delighted to have worked in partnership with The Museum of Cornish Life at Helston throughout 2021 on a national project developed by Imperial War Museums (IWM). This project saw both museums delivering a range of projects that uncovered lesser-known stories about Cornwall in the Second World War.
Second World War Project
Alongside the opening of the Imperial War Museum’s new Second World War and The Holocaust Galleries in 2021, IWM’s Second World War and Holocaust Partnership Programme (SWWHPP) is working with eight cultural heritage partners across the UK. We are lucky to be the South West partner on this national project along with the Museum of Cornish Life at Helston. Thanks to this project we’ve been able to establish a Digital Internship post and carry out a major research project exploring Bodmin and Cornwall’s Second World War history and share it online and via community events during 2021. This section of our website connects you to the research we’ve been doing and to exhibitions and online resources about the Second World War
The SWWHPP is generously funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.
Our Regiment in the Second World War
The Duke of Cornwall's Light Infantry (DCLI)
With many undergoing their basic training here at Bodmin Keep, as a regiment of the British Army, the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry played a significant role during the Second World War. Whether it be the 1st, 2nd, 5th or 30th Battalion, we remember them and their service.Find out more here
Our Military Site in the Second World War
Walker Lines Camp
Originally a Second World War military camp that housed thousands of British Army and U.S Army soldiers in the run up to D-Day, Walker Lines today looks like any other industrial estate. But look closely, and you will see clues to its fascinating history. At its military peak, there were 111 buildings on the camp including sleeping accommodation, latrines, a gymnasium and NAAFI stores.Find out more here
Ways to Explore our Second World War Stories
- Podcasts – listen to our professionally-produced podcasts that tell fascinating stories of Cornwall in the Second World War – Cornwall’s D-Day and Soldiers of Colour
- Blog Articles – insightful personal reflections from our team researching Cornwall’s stories of the Second World War during lockdown
We’d be very grateful if you could spare a few minutes of your time to give us feedback on our Podcasts and Blog Articles by completing the short survey at this link
- Online Video Talks – Author Susan Soyinka gives a talk about her book From East End to Land’s End. Find out about the Second World War evacuation of Jews’ Free School (JFS) in the East End of London to Mousehole in Cornwall. Susan also talks about the artist as refugee Albert Reuss in Mousehole . And our Collections Manager Verity Anthony talks about the museum’s Second World War Prisoner of War Objects
- BBC Uploads – listen to our Digital Interns Charlotte and Joseph talking about their work investigating Cornwall’s Second World War Stories
- Fun Stuff – fun Second World War-themed activity resources Keep Kids and our Wartime Makeup ‘how to’ video
- For People Living in Care Settings – enjoyable outreach activities that can really brighten your day!
- Schools Resources – great workshops for primary schools
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