Ann BonsorAnn Bonsor was recruited into the FANY in October 1942. Identified as being of the right sort, she was sent to Special Training School No 52 at Thame Park in Oxfordshire. This was one of many stately homes used by SOE and amusingly, some suggested that SOE stood for “Stately ’Omes of England”.
Ann Bonsor – Film 1In the first of 6 films, Ann Bonsor elaborates on how she became involved with the FANY, including details of her complex training as a wireless telegraphist. Despite working appalling shifts in confined work spaces, Ann and her colleagues managed to enjoy it, she just kept smiling!
Ann Bonsor – Film 2Regardless of her inexperience, Ann and her fellow FANY were sent to Algiers, Corsica, the south of France and Sicily to work. They also worked in the SOE bases in both London and Cairo, where they were closely monitored by the Commanding Officer. Many of the women didnt make the cut, but through hard work and perseverance, Ann managed to keep her place; and still maintained a pretty great social life!
Ann Bonsor – Film 3Working with the FANY was incredibly exciting for Ann, but there were often times when they were reminded of the seriousness of their work. The FANY became aware of how worthwhile their jobs really were.
Ann Bonsor – Film 4Following 15 months in North Africa, towards the end of the war, Ann was sent to the SOE in Bari, before being moved to Sienna. Work was slowing up, and she decided to give something back by setting up an education course to help the younger generation of FANY.
Ann Bonsor – Film 5Whilst in Algiers, Ann and her colleagues had to be wary of their surroundings, but she recalls her experiences there as being quite exciting. In spite of the dangers, she claims not to have been scared, enjoyment was much more important!
Ann Bonsor – Film 6Ann talks about the relationships that were formed through the Morse, despite not knowing who they really were. She describes her time in the FANY as a tremendously rich experience, and it is obvious that she cherishes her adventures immensely. Thanks to Ann for sharing her stories with us, its clear that her cheerful spirit lives on till today!
Ann Bonsor was recruited into the FANY in October 1942. Identified as being of the right sort, she was sent to Special Training School No 52 at Thame Park in Oxfordshire. This was one of many stately homes used by SOE and amusingly, some suggested that SOE stood for “Stately ’Omes of England”.