Biography

Tessa Dunlop is a historian, writer and broadcaster and a Sunday Times bestseller. Previously a lead presenter of BBC’s Coast, she is the author of Bletchley Girls, Century Girls and most recently, Army Girls.

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Tessa’s first book, Bletchley Girls, weaved together the lives of fifteen women who were all selected to work in Britain’s most secret organisation, Bletchley Park. Her next book, Century Girls, commemorated 100 years of women gaining the vote and featured six women born in 1918 or before who didn’t just witness that change, they lived it.

Army Girls is her most recent book and is the intimate story of the final few women who served in World War II and are still alive to tell their tale. They were female soldiers in a war Britain wanted to fight without conscripting women. It was a vain hope, by December 1941 for the first time in British history women were called up and a generation of girls came of age in khaki, serving king and country. Barbara trained to drive army-style in giant trucks and Grace swapped her servant’s pinafore for battledress and a steel hat, Martha turned down officer status for action on a gun-site and Olivia won the Croix de Guerre in France.

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Books

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Events

 

Army Girls at the National Museum

Army Girls at the National Museum

To mark the release of her latest book, Army Girls, historian and author Tessa Dunlop chairs an exclusive panel featuring some of the last surviving female soldiers of the Second World War.In December 1941, for the first time in its history, Britain introduced military conscription for ...

Articles

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Olivia Jordan

Olivia Jordan

In 1940 Olivia Jordan, then Matthews, drove an ambulance under fire in France, escaped to Britain as the Germans closed in and became Charles de Gaulle’s driver-translator in London. Subsequently she was awarded the Croix de Guerre, though talking of her war work last year, Olivia, who has died
Girl Power: The Women of Bletchley Park

Girl Power: The Women of Bletchley Park

2019 was the 100th anniversary of GCHQ, once called the Government Code and Cipher School (GC&CS) and the brainchild behind one of World War II’s most famous institutions: Bletchley Park in Buckinghamshire.During the war, Bletchley depended on the heft of a predominantly female ...