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Remembered Today:

Poem to Nurse Eva May Hughes Q.M.M.H, Whalley 1918/19


Jonathan Davies
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Nurse Eva May Hughes was at Queen Mary's Military Hospital (QMMH), Whalley, Lancashire, UK in 1918 and 1919 in mainly Wards F1 and F2 but also A1. Born 1984, home address, Rock House, Penybont, died unmarried 20th Oct 1961. so any help or advice in tracking down any details appreciated.

I found a panoramic staff picture of QMMH from 1917 at Whalley Library and later found that The Wellcome Collection has the original [Ref RAMC/1485] and was able to download a high-res copy. Its possible she is pictured on that if she was there in 1917 - the books inside cover is dated 1918. However no faces with a family resemblance jump out at me. If there was a 1917 staff photo might there be a 1918 or 1919 one somewhere?

I've submitted a query to the Red Cross to try and get any details, I don't know what order she belonged to. An autograph book of hers with rhymes and pictures by soldiers on the above wards I'm working from refer to '... she has a wristlet watch ...' and another '...buttons on her shoes...' and another ...' nurses do the work and sisters get the money...' though what is fact and what is poetic licence I've no idea.

Here's one of the entries on the autograph book in full - though the name was rubbed out and I've replaced it.

Nurses and Sisters we've got the best

They are happy and content

Sometimes they say a hasty word

For which they soon repent.

They have what they call their half day

In which to do their shopping

Its a good job they don't take to beer

or tramcars they'd be stopping

We have one little Welsh girl

by name she's called Nurse Hughes

She's got a little fancy curl

and buttons on her shoes

Each night before I go to bed

when the air is cool with rain

The day when this Welsh Girl will wed

comes flashing through my brain.

R. Hargreaves N G C F2 Ward 7.4.19

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