Patricia Davies was born in 1923 and volunteered for the WRENs (Women’s Royal Naval Service) in 1942 and served until 1945 as a Cipher. As she had a specialised job, she started with the rank of Petty Officer WREN and was then promoted to Chief Petty Officer WREN.
The main part of her work was for Bletchley Park – the decoding centre – because a great number of messages were in naval Enigma code. She would write the message as accurately as she possibly could by listening to the radio signals on her headphones. She then sent these messages by teleprinter, which at that time was the fastest way you could communicate to Bletchley Park, and it was very much one-way traffic.
When the German Fleet capitulated, Patricia went up to Admiralty in London as a translator and then to General Eisenhower’s London intelligence headquarters. Her job was to go through documents that had been captured at various German administrative headquarters to find out who were war criminals and ought to be brought to trial at Nuremburg.
Her sister Jean joined the First Aid Yeomanry and was trained as a Cipher Officer for the army, and she went to Cairo and then Italy. Like Patricia, she signed the Official Secrets Act. Neither of them told each other what they did for thirty years after the war.