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TITLE
Canadian War Brides (10 of 14)
EXTERNAL ID
AB_CANADIAN_WAR_BRIDES_10
DATE OF RECORDING
2009
PERIOD
2000s
CREATOR
Melynda Jarratt
SOURCE
Am Baile
ASSET ID
1111
KEYWORDS
Second World War
World War II
2nd World War
audios

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In July 2009, Melynda Jarratt, the leading expert on Canadian War Brides, gave a talk on her subject at Dingwall Library. She was accompanied by Zoe Boone, a Canadian War Bride from Aberdeen. In this audio extract Melynda tells the story of her father's wartime experiences at Balblair House.

'Ah, during the Second World War my grandfather worked at Balblair House and when he - he was the cook - and when he left, he was given the key to Balblair House by Lady Lovat and told that he was welcome to come back any time. And as evidence of that solid friendship that they had grown between them during the war he gave her the key to Balblair House.

Now, of course, he comes back to New Brunswick and everybody's, 'Yeah, sure! Yeah, I don't believe that one.' So, um, and even in my family we didn't believe necessarily that it was true. So, just before I left to come to Scotland, my brother came up to me and said, 'Melynda, when you're in Beauly you've got to go to Balblair House and check out this key.' Now, I had never really heard that story before and so he showed me this big key, and it was this great big thing, weighed about, you know, three pounds or whatever, and it's about six inches long, and it was very heavy, made of metal, very unusual looking key. So, I took a picture of it and it was sent along with some other information to the 'Inverness Courier' and they did a very nice article which many of you may have seen in the lead up to, a couple of weeks ago, about me coming here to write a book on the Canadian Forestry Corps.

Well, yesterday afternoon, Alastair and I went up to Balblair House and, um, we were on a mission. We wanted to get a picture of Balblair House, because I really wanted to, at least, bring that back to my family, but also wanted to see about the key. Well, when we got there, we, we met Mrs Fraser, the wife of Hugh Fraser, and she was very, very nice to us and allowed us to take photographs, and when she found out that we were, you know, connected to the Forestry Corps, there was no problem. She said, 'Take photos. Do whatever you want (her husband was ill) but sure, go around.'

And then, Alastair says, 'What about that key? Don't forget the key.' And I was so excited, I'd given her my only copy of my book! And my friend Catherine, I had to phone her last night at the hotel in Inverness and say, 'Don't forget to bring your copy of the book which I gave you cause I don't even have a copy myself for tonight!' So, ah, so I gave her a copy of the book and we were ready to leave and he goes, 'Don't forget the key!' So then I got to ask her about the key. And I told her the story and she said, 'Well, let me go check.' And she went into the front entrance and came back out and there she had the key. There it is, that's a picture of her, oops, sorry, her, holding the key. That must have been weird. She's holding the key and there's, that's the same key that my grandfather was given by Lady Lovat in 1945 when he left Scotland. And you know, Scotland shaped his future and his present and he always, always loved the Scotch.'

Melynda Jarratt lives in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada. She has been researching Canadian War Brides since 1987 when she began working on her thesis at the University of New Brunswick. She has published various books on the subject including 'War Brides (2007) and 'Captured Hearts' (2008).

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Canadian War Brides (10 of 14)

2000s

Second World War; World War II; 2nd World War; audios

Am Baile

Am Baile: Canadian War Brides

In July 2009, Melynda Jarratt, the leading expert on Canadian War Brides, gave a talk on her subject at Dingwall Library. She was accompanied by Zoe Boone, a Canadian War Bride from Aberdeen. In this audio extract Melynda tells the story of her father's wartime experiences at Balblair House.<br /> <br /> 'Ah, during the Second World War my grandfather worked at Balblair House and when he - he was the cook - and when he left, he was given the key to Balblair House by Lady Lovat and told that he was welcome to come back any time. And as evidence of that solid friendship that they had grown between them during the war he gave her the key to Balblair House. <br /> <br /> Now, of course, he comes back to New Brunswick and everybody's, 'Yeah, sure! Yeah, I don't believe that one.' So, um, and even in my family we didn't believe necessarily that it was true. So, just before I left to come to Scotland, my brother came up to me and said, 'Melynda, when you're in Beauly you've got to go to Balblair House and check out this key.' Now, I had never really heard that story before and so he showed me this big key, and it was this great big thing, weighed about, you know, three pounds or whatever, and it's about six inches long, and it was very heavy, made of metal, very unusual looking key. So, I took a picture of it and it was sent along with some other information to the 'Inverness Courier' and they did a very nice article which many of you may have seen in the lead up to, a couple of weeks ago, about me coming here to write a book on the Canadian Forestry Corps. <br /> <br /> Well, yesterday afternoon, Alastair and I went up to Balblair House and, um, we were on a mission. We wanted to get a picture of Balblair House, because I really wanted to, at least, bring that back to my family, but also wanted to see about the key. Well, when we got there, we, we met Mrs Fraser, the wife of Hugh Fraser, and she was very, very nice to us and allowed us to take photographs, and when she found out that we were, you know, connected to the Forestry Corps, there was no problem. She said, 'Take photos. Do whatever you want (her husband was ill) but sure, go around.' <br /> <br /> And then, Alastair says, 'What about that key? Don't forget the key.' And I was so excited, I'd given her my only copy of my book! And my friend Catherine, I had to phone her last night at the hotel in Inverness and say, 'Don't forget to bring your copy of the book which I gave you cause I don't even have a copy myself for tonight!' So, ah, so I gave her a copy of the book and we were ready to leave and he goes, 'Don't forget the key!' So then I got to ask her about the key. And I told her the story and she said, 'Well, let me go check.' And she went into the front entrance and came back out and there she had the key. There it is, that's a picture of her, oops, sorry, her, holding the key. That must have been weird. She's holding the key and there's, that's the same key that my grandfather was given by Lady Lovat in 1945 when he left Scotland. And you know, Scotland shaped his future and his present and he always, always loved the Scotch.'<br /> <br /> Melynda Jarratt lives in Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada. She has been researching Canadian War Brides since 1987 when she began working on her thesis at the University of New Brunswick. She has published various books on the subject including 'War Brides (2007) and 'Captured Hearts' (2008).<br /> <br /> Find out more about the <A HREF=" http://www.canadianwarbrides.com/"target="_blank">Canadian War Brides</A>