Army friends reunite on Bute after 48 years

Friends Doreen Jacques and Sheila Marshall were reunited last week after 48 years apart.
Friends Doreen Jacques and Sheila Marshall were reunited last week after 48 years apart.

Two ladies who became firm friends when serving in the Women’s Royal Army Corps have been reunited on Bute this week after 48 years.

Island resident Doreen Jacques first met Sheila Marshall in 1963, when the ladies signed up to serve in the Women’s Royal Army Corps in the 251 Signals Squadron, based in Aldershot.

When their service was finished, Doreen and Sheila went their separate ways, and as is often the case, lost touch over the years.

However, the creation of a Facebook page set up for former members of the WRAC was to be the catalyst for the reignition of the ladies’ friendship, with Sheila finally making the trip to Bute last week.

“There were about 18 girls in each billet and living together that close you become like a surrogate family,” Sheila explained.

“When your service is up, you can’t wait to get back home - in my case Manchester, in Doreen’s case Wales - but after a few years you start missing everyone.

“The friendships you form in the army are friendships for life.”

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