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Photo:- Ian Jenkins

Australian Women's Land Army hat badge


Women's Land Army members working on Fowler's Farm
at Home Hill in the Burdekin district during WW2. 
L - R: Kath Kettleton, Meg Campbell, Lois Beur, and Freda Beur 


The Australian Women's Land Army was formed in July 1942 to provide labour to the rural industry in Australia to ensure military and civilian requirements for food production were met.

The Australian Woman's Land Army established a large Training Farm at Samsonvale just north of Samford Village during WWII. The area was taken over by the CSIRO after the war for a Pasture Research Station.

Some Australian Women's Land Army girls were stationed at the Birkdale School of Arts building in The Redlands area in south east Queensland during the last few years of the war. The hall was used as their combined cook house, dining room and recreation hall. The Land Army  girls were accommodated in tents in the grounds of the hall. The girl's Matron slept in the hall. The girls would work on all the local farms throughout the district and catch the train to the city on their days off.

Beryl Mary Menzies joined the Australian Women's Land Army when she was fifteen years old. The normal recruiting age for the Land Army was 16 years old, but Beryl was able to join by obtaining her parents consent. Beryl first worked on a custard apple farm at Raby Bay near Brisbane in south east Queensland. She then relocated to a small crops farm at Long Pocket Road, Indooroopilly in Brisbane. Her next posting was to an apple orchard at Glen Aplin near Stanthorpe. She then moved to The Summit in the same general area.

Following a stint on a cattle property, Beryl worked for about 11 months at Taylor's Plain near Mitchell in western Queensland. Her main duties there were milking cows and looking after vegetable crops. Beryl's wage amounted to 4 Pounds per week. In addition she received food rations and meals and lodgings. She used to keep one Pound (1) for her general living expenses and forward three Pounds (3) home.

Beryl Menzies worked with the Land Army until 13 January 1945, which amounted to a total of 1 year, 11 months and 14 days. She received two red stars to acknowledge her service with the Land Army. She became Mrs Beryl O'Hanlon in 1959 when she married Bill O'Hanlon. 

Beryl passed away at the Sunshine Coast on 15 January 2006.



I'd like to thank Ian Jenkins for his assistance with this web page.



"Black Snow and Liquid Gold"
By John Kerr

The Courier Mail, 2 March 2006
Obituaries, page +36


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This page first produced 20 January 2002

This page last updated 07 May 2018