Peggy Williams

‘He was so kind to the Land Army girls.’

24 June 2020

Today we remember Peggy Williams, who joined a new class of working women in the Women’s Land Army. She was sent to the Riverina to work on a farm and faced an unexpected challenge.

Peggy Williams — He was so kind to the Land Army girls.

Peggy Williams audio file (MP4 23.90 MB)

Peggy Williams audio script

75th Anniversary of the End of the Second World War

Audio actuality

“Fellow Citizens, the War is over” — (The Hon J B Chifley, Prime Minister of Australia)

On the 75th Anniversary of the End of the Second World War, Australia Remembers Peggy Williams, who joined a new class of working women in the Women’s Land Army.

But when she was sent to the Riverina to work on a farm, Peggy faced an unexpected challenge.

Peggy Williams

When my brother wrote to me from the Middle East to say: "Don't be working on the land for an Italian — I'm fighting them”. So, this day I was sent to work for an Italian — Mr Poppolato — and I said: "Look, I'm sick". I think that man realised by looking at me that I wasn’t sick — that I was just having my own little hate of him. So I sat under a tree all day. And he was so kind to the Land Army girls — he sort of threw away their sandwiches and cooked them a meal.

At the end of the day, he came to ask me how I felt. And he had a son that was fighting in the same unit with my brother. And I'll never forget my feelings toward that man and what I was doing to that man.

I went back on my weekends off and worked for him. Until the day that man died, he sent me cases of fruit, he came to Sydney to see me. So that story is always there.

Saturday, August 15 marks the 75th Anniversary of the End of the Second World War. Let’s pay our respects to that amazing generation of Australians.