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Last Updated: Thursday, 6 December 2007, 15:02 GMT
Commendation for WW2 'Land Girls'
"Land Girls" on a farm in Essex in 1941
The "Land Girls" wore green ties and jumpers, plus brown felt hats
The "Land Girls", who worked on British farms to ensure food was supplied during World War II, are to receive a commendation recognising their efforts.

All surviving members of the Women's Land Army, which was 80,000-strong at its peak, will receive a special badge.

They "worked tirelessly for the benefit of the nation" during the 1940s, Environment Secretary Hilary Benn said.

"Their selfless service to the country deserves the recognition that this badge will represent," he added.

'Lumber Jills'

The "Land Girls" wore green ties and jumpers along with brown hats.

Many of them kept working for five years after the war, until the Women's Land Army was finally disbanded in 1950.

Anna Friel, Rachel Weisz and Catherine McCormack in 1998's The Land Girls
A film about the Land Girls, starring Anna Friel (left), came out in 1998
Their work was an important factor in ensuring milk, vegetables and other homegrown produce could be distributed around the country at a time of rationing and shortages.

And there were also "Lumber Jills", in the separate Women's Timber Corps, who were based in forests and provided wood which could be distributed nationwide.

"Supplying the nation with food and timber during the dark days of war was no easy task," said Mr Benn, who will honour the first group of recipients next year.

"I look forward to meeting some of the veterans and presenting them with their badges."

The Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said anyone wishing to apply for the commendation should fill out an application form, which would be made available "in the early part of next year".

It has also set up a telephone hotline for enquiries about the badge, which is 08459 335577.

SEE ALSO
Statue to 'lumberjills' unveiled
10 Oct 07 |  Tayside and Central
Land Girls' medal for war effort
22 Sep 06 |  Isle of Man

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