Prisons and Prostitues
In 1938, my Mum turned 21.
In her life, at that time, it was a magic number. She was finally allowed a key to the house; her mother had to discuss how much of Mum’s pay packet she was allowed to commandeer; she had to be taken seriously now.
Mum, however, had plans of her own. She found a government job being advertised in London that offered her a decent salary and a pension. She was a quarter of an inch too short so she inhaled deeply during the measurement process and put on her most charming demeanor. She made it.
The job? Wardress at Holloway Prison, one of the largest women’s prisons in Europe at the time. About that height issue? When she inhaled deeply, Mum was a towering 5’2”.