Stevenage mum takes life back 70 years to mark end of war in Europe

Elaine Worsley.

Elaine Worsley. - Credit: Archant

One Stevenage mother has adopted an unusual way of marking the 70th anniversary of VE Day.

Lainey tending to her crops.

Lainey tending to her crops. - Credit: Archant

Elaine Worsley is raising money for The Royal British Legion’s Poppy Appeal by living, eating and breathing the life led by millions of people in the UK during the Second World War.

The 47-year-old carer – known to friends as Lainey – has been living on wartime rations since the 70th anniversary of victory in Europe earlier this month and will continue to do so until Armistice Day in November.

She said: “I am trying to make the experience as realistic as possible.

“To that end I have purchased a ration book from the Imperial War Museum in London and I have registered with Stevenage Family Butcher’s who have kindly agreed to provide me the same amount of meat people got back then free of charge.”

Lainey is also ‘Digging for Victory’ and has covered the patio of her house in St Nicholas with pots to grow as many vegetables as possible.

The mother-of-two is also keeping chickens after her landlord Stevenage Borough Council gave her permission.

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She said: “I’m very hopeful of a good harvest to eat and to turn some of it into various pickles and chutneys.”

The project doesn’t stop with food and Lainey, a self-confessed dab hand with a sewing machine, will be doing everything to make do and mend everyday items.

She was inspired to take on the challenge after being selected to take part in The Watch – a project in which people kept guard over the Cenotaph in London and marked the start of last year’s Poppy Appeal.

All the money raised will go to the Legion’s Poppy Appeal which supports serving or former military personnel and their families.

Lainey said she will choose another military charity to support but is yet to decide which one.

To see her weekly blog and for a link to her JustGiving page visit