Mrs Fraser-Harris joins Munition Making at 62

Mrs Fraser-Harris munition making at 62, during world war two

62 year old lady proves she's just as capable as her younger counterparts

Munition Making at 62

Lady Workers' 10 Hours a Day

At a local factory engaged on Government work, a well educated and widely travelled lady of 62 has, for the last five months, been working from eight in the morning until a quarter to seven at night on a drilling machine.

She is Mrs Eleanor Fraser-Harris, who has left her charming home in Maresfield, Sussex, in order that she may live near near work.

In an interview with a Kentish Times reporter, she said that from the very commencement of the war she had tried to get work that would aid the national war effort, offering her services in all capacities, including clerical and translating work.  Everywhere she went she was told that she was too old to be of use, until, in despair, she undertook voluntary service with the Home Guard and the W.V.S.

While staying with friends she was given the opportunity to apply for work at the factory where she is now engaged,  It was the first job she had ever had in her life and, receiving no training, she went into it as a raw recruit, she she has proved an enormous success, and she thoroughly enjoys her work, although it seemed very strange at first.

Mrs Fraser-Harris is a widow and her only son is a lieutenant in the Fleet Air Arm stationed abroad.  He has expressed his very strong approval at her contribution to the war effort, although it caused quite a sensation in his mess. 

All her male relatives and friends hold commissioned ranks in the Army and Navy, and they were astonished when they heard what she was doing and insisted that she would never be able to stand it, but she has proved them very much wrong as, except for a slight cold she has never absented herself, and the only time when she was late on duty was when her alarm clock did not function.

Mrs Fraser-Harris has been to most parts of the world, her husband was a university professor, and she has always followed the widest interests.  The only things she misses now, she says, are her garden and her leisure which she used to the full.


She believes that older women can prove invaluable in the country’s effort, they are steadier and more reliable then younger ones, but there is very little opportunity given them to do what they can.  She believes that many of them could be very easily discouraged by the constant refusals of their offers of help, but she urges them to make every effort.

She is very emphatic om her condemnation of those older people who will put out no effort at all, and she feels that many of them hardly know there is a war on.

Her praise of her fellow workers is very warm and she heartily appreciated their kindness and patience with her when she was new to her job.

She fully intends to carry on.

Article - Munition Making at 62. Lady workers 10 hours a day

Bromley & District Times, 3rd April 1942, page 5.

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