The post-war occupation of Germany, was shared by armed forces from the United Kingdom, France, Belgium, Holland, Norway, Denmark, Russia and America.
The British Government decided that within the British zone of Germany, families would accompany male civilian employees and armed forces personnel, and that an educational system similar to that in the UK would be provided for all children up to the age of 18 years .
John Trevelyan the Director of Education for Westmorland was appointed Director of BFES (British Families Education Service). He and the Foreign Office recruited administrators and teachers late in 1946
School buildings were established in Germany with the help of the Royal Engineers. Soon there were schools throughout the British Zone, with two large Boarding Schools at Plön, in Schleswig Holstein, and in Wilhelmschaven, and a Primary Boarding School near Brunswick for children from isolated and small units.
BFES staff members were given navy blue uniforms. The uniforms were never worn in classrooms because John Trevelyan obtained permission for his staff to wear civilian clothes. He felt it was important that children were not confronted by uniformed staff.
In the winter of 1951/52 the BFES was combined with Army Education/Air Force Education and became BFES/SCE (Service Children’s Education) .
The histories and archives of two women, Mimi Hatton and Arabella Kurdi, who worked for the BFES in the immediate post-war period are featured in this site.
Find out more about Mimi Hatton
Find out more about Arabella Kurdi