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Digging for Victory

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‘Make every yard of ground yield. Beg, buy or borrow a spade and Dig for Victory’ – Evening Post 1943.

As part of the Garden and Art Festival the Tauranga Heritage Collection presented ‘Digging for Victory’ an exhibition which explored Tauranga responses to the World War Two campaign of home front gardening. It also featured present-day residents reviving a ‘grow your own’ philosophy.

The exhibition drew attention to the considerable contribution Land Girls made to the war effort. With the agricultural work force diverted to fighting the war elsewhere, the Women’s Land Army took up the challenge to keep farms growing around the country. The work of local Land Girls Marjory Shaw, Betty Miller, and Marie Champion was celebrated. Marjory Shaw’s niece Joy Edmonds commented that, ‘Marjory and the other Land Girls worked harder and longer hours than many of the men who contributed to the war effort so it is good to see them recognized’.