In MED Theatre’s 2007 film and promenade performance, ‘Children’s Castle’, Wild Nights Young Company explored the story of four evacuees who arrive at Castle Drogo from London during the Second World War.
Research since carried out has discovered that the lives of these four children were perhaps more fictional that we had first thought…
The more recent understanding of the castle’s use during World War Two is that it was, in fact, a nursery and home for ‘waifs and strays’ under the age of five, or orphans as we would now refer to them.
Although Mary Drewe had indeed attempted to use her family’s home as a place of safety for non-orphan evacuees, this was initially unsuccessful. Children under the age of five were evacuated with their mothers or a close adult relative, and on first arriving at Castle Drogo these groups of evacuees were horrified. They wondered at how they would survive in such a remote and rural place and so, only a day after their arrival, left again.