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Book ignores women's group claims president

By North Devon Journal  |  Posted: September 05, 2013

REAL TROOPERS: Women from the South Molton Royal British Legion Women's Branch, whose numbers have dwindled over recent years.

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THE president of the South Molton Royal British Legion Women's Section has criticised the publication of a new book launched in the town.

Published in June, The Royal British Legion... And One Small Branch In Devon tells the story of 65 members of the main South Molton branch.

However, Helen Macintosh, who has been Women's Section president for more than seven years, claims the group were ignored by those behind the book.

She said: "It astounds me that the people who put the South Molton book together didn't even consider writing to me or even the secretary of our group.

"They know that I'm in the Legion and that I'm the president."

Despite the women's section being considered separate to the town's main branch, Mrs Macintosh said the group should have been allowed to contribute to the book.

"We have been in being for 67 years and worked side by side with the men's section for most of that, so how we were not included I will never know," she said.

Although the book does include a short history of the women's section, as well as numerous accounts from female members of the main branch, Mrs Macintosh believes that the role of the group has been underplayed.

She said: "This has become a bit of a hobby horse of mine because I don't like that our veterans who actually served in the war have been completely omitted.

"How can that fact have been completely ignored?

"It disturbed me that they seemed to be airbrushing the women that served during the war out of history. We too have our stories to tell."

The Journal contacted the South Molton Royal British Legion branch, but it declined to comment.

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