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Pri­vates Johnny Hea­wood and Bill Dunstan of the Cana­dian army get into char­ac­ter as drag queens ‘Trilby’ and ‘Trixie’ of The Tin Hats, a cabaret troupe cre­ated to en­ter­tain sol­diers dur­ing the Sec­ond World War. This is one of sev­eral im­ages taken by pho­tog­ra­pher John Topham dur­ing a visit to the base of the Royal Ar­tillery Coastal De­fence Bat­tery – at Shorne­mead Fort, near Gravesend, Kent. The pho­tos were banned from publi­ca­tion by the Min­istry of In­for­ma­tion and have only now come to light.

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