Thursday, 12 March 2015

Belgians and Leeds, a story

In 1992, Family Tree magazine, the July issue, printed an article by Linda Williams, then Carshalton, Surrey, in which the author was looking for people with information on Belgian refugees in Britain. You can find the article here.

Linda Williams own family story triggered her interest. The family of her grandmother were called Schippers and they spent the entire war in Leeds. Mrs. Williams recorded a figure of 1600 Belgians in Leeds. As a token of appreciation, the Belgians presented the city with a silver tea and coffee set before they were repatriated in 1919. Linda's grandmother returned to Belgium and used her English to cheer the British troops billeted in her village in 1944 and eventually her elder daughter married one of them, Leslie White, the father of Linda.

More about Belgians in Leeds via the Wartime Leeds project or the Legacies of War project.

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