The impact of the Second World War was greatly felt by civilians in Britain. Unlike the First World War, which had largely occurred on mainland Europe, those living in Britain between 1939 and 1945 became subject to aerial bombardments, damage to property, and food and fuel rationing.
As a profession engineers were greatly in need at home and abroad during wartime and many engineers found themselves serving in the armed forces. Some of those serving in the Armed Forces became of Prisoners of War and all had to adjust to returning to civilian life in a country where much had changed compared to pre-war life.
Many engineers were taken Prisoner over the course of the Second World War.
Continuing to educate the next generation of engineers and provide development for existing engineers was viewed as being of the utmost importance during the Second World War.
Fuel rationing was introduced in March 1942. Electrical Engineer Cecil Melling strongly disagreed with the rationing of electricity.
The papers of IEE Member Maurice Blythe revealed the support available to those engineers who were returning to civilian life having served in the Forces.
Maintaining a reliable electric supply for both domestic supply and for factories working on the war effort was paramount.
Civil engineers and contractors played an essential role in the design and construction of shelters for the British public.