Children's experience of war including their depictions of real scenes from refugee camps using toys is explored in a new exhibition.

stories of children who become victims of war - from Second World War evacuees to today’s refugees and asylum seekers - are told through objects, personal stories, oral histories, art and photography.

An unique photo series War Toys vividly brings to life the effects of war on children living in conflict zones around the world.

Witney Gazette:

Acting as their own art directors, children often living in refugee camps are given the opportunity to depict real scenes from their experiences using toys and the local terrain.

The resulting images are impactful and thought provoking, giving an insight into a world which is far removed from watching news programmes covering the camps in war zones.

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With a focus on Oxfordshire people, visitors to the Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum can see and hear what living through conflict is like first-hand, from recordings of evacuation memories to present-day accounts from children who arrive in the county and experience a new culture here, processing their life experiences through art and personal stories.

The museum has partnered with two charities, Little Troopers and Brian McCarty’s War Toys, to put on the exhibition.

Little Troopers is a charity which supports all children who have parents serving in the British Armed Forces.

The exhibition includes their reflections of what it life is like in the military community - how they cope with having their parents deployed overseas, how they move house and school regularly, building friendships for what can be short periods of time.

Founder Louise Fetigan said: "There are more than 100,000 children today who have parents serving in the British Armed Forces so it's really important that we represent these children and give them the opportunity to tell their story and to share their unique experiences.

"Military life is full of challenge, change and adventure and this exhibit offers visitors a special insight into our Armed Forces community as seen through the eyes of military children."

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SOFO Museum has also collected accounts from children of the 1950s to 2000s, whose parents were part of the British forces. Frequently these children experienced traveling across the globe following in their father’s footsteps, often giving them unique life experiences they never forgot.

Witney Gazette:

The exhibition will not only run throughout both Armed Forces Day and Refugee Week, but also the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee bank holiday weekend in June.

To mark the Jubilee, SOFO Museum will highlight the Queen’s own ‘military childhood’ and her Second World War service in the Auxiliary Territorial Service (ATS) with a timeline of the nation’s toys and books from the tin soldiers of yesterday to remote control drones of today.

Children and Military Lives Exhibition - Stories of Adventure, Family, and Exile runs from June 2 to November 24 at Soldiers of Oxfordshire Museum, Woodstock.