Lady Milena Grenfell-Baines Visits Clyst Vale

ladym2Lady Milena Grenfell-Baines was born in Prague in 1930 to a Jewish family. She was able to escape as the Nazis moved towards Prague because of the efforts of Sir Nicholas Winton. He was then just 29 years old and lived in London. With a small team of helpers he managed to arrange visas to get children to safety in Britain. Train tickets were bought and host families found to get 669 children out of Prague. Lady Milena was just nine years old and her sister, Eva, four when her mother put her on a train in Prague and waved goodbye to her. She and Eva were looked after by the Radcliffe family in the Midlands. She later went to a boarding school in Wales run by the Czech Government in exile. As one of “Winton’s Children” she appeared in a “That’s Life “television programme in the 1980s. She visits Sir Nicholas (now aged 105) regularly.

Lady Milena spoke to all our Year 9 students. She showed them photos of her family when living in Prague. Her mother was later able to escape to England but her grandfather and all of her extended family were killed in the Holocaust. Our students listened with great interest to her story. We all learnt a great deal and the students will, I am sure, long remember the visit from this amazing person.