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Patricia Culbertson

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My name is Patricia Catherine Mary Culbertson (nee Wright), Land Army No. 70.

I joined the Land Army in late 1942 and was in there until the war ended in 1945. I took the legion to the King and Country at the Army Office in King Street, Perth, Western Australia.

I was sent firstly to Caversham to work on a vineyard and then to work at Waldecks. From there I was sent to work in a market garden in Cannington and was there for around six months. I then went to work in Upper Swan back on the vineyards as well as picking and packing tomatoes. I left there to go back to West Swan on another vineyard and last but not least ended up at Donnybrook on flax. The flax was used to make webbing for the Army as well as Air Force parachutes.

After the war ended, I left the Land Army and returned to my old job in East Perth at WA Knitters working on a knitting machine. After six months, my then boyfriend, Cyril, returned home from the war and we were married. We were married for 56 years before he passed away in 2001. Cyril also joined the army as an 18 year-old and was sent to Darwin and Rabaul in New Britain. He was there during the bombing of Darwin by the Japanese and was sent to Rabaul to keep back the Japanese from reaching Australia at that time. I met Cyril when my brother brought him home to visit when they were on furlough. My brother and Cyril were good mates and remained so until his passing away.

I am still currently an active member of the Australian Women’s Land Army Perth Branch. We hold meetings at Anzac House every 4th Thursday of the month. I was President of this Branch for 3 years, Vice President for 3 years and now a member. During my time as President, I took up the challenge to get the Land Army women recognised and accepted into the RSL. After a two-year battle we won the right to be accepted into the RSL. I was the very first Land Army girl to be accepted into the RSL followed by other Perth Branch Land Army girls. There is now a very good rapport between the RSL and Land Army Women, which is very much appreciated by us.

The above is a true and accurate account of my Land Army Service.

 

Acknowledgement of Country

The Government of Western Australia acknowledges the traditional custodians throughout Western Australia and their continuing connection to the land, waters and community. We pay our respects to all members of the Aboriginal communities and their cultures; and to Elders both past and present.