• Entry type: Person
  • Entry ID: AWE0466

Batt, Elva May

(1920 – ) Lieutenant Elva Baikie
  • Born 14 September, 1920, Sydney New South Wales Australia
  • Occupation Servicewoman


Elva Batt enlisted in the Australian Army on 29 October 1941. Originally a Voluntary Aid she later joined the Australian Army Medical Women’s Service. Batt was then transferred to the Australian Women’s Army Service.

Before attending the Australian Women’s Services Officers Training School, Batt was a sergeant working as a clerk in the orderly room. Upon completion of the course she was promoted to Lieutenant (later Captain) and became an Amenities Officer with the Australian Women’s Army Service.

It was Batt’s job to organize sporting events (i.e. swimming carnivals, basketball matches, etc.) and entertainment and to oversee the supply of goods from the Canteen Funds, such as bedspreads, irons, jugs, sewing machines etc., to make a servicewoman’s tent or hut seem like home. [1]

Nearing the end of the war, Batt was transferred to Melbourne Headquarters to oversee the disbanding of the Australian Women’s Army Service. She was discharged on 28 June 1946.

Later, in 1946, she married Barry Batt and they had two children. Batt states that one of her major challenges was now having to cook, as during the previous five years all meals had been cooked for enlisted personnel.

In retirement Batt and her husband became volunteer members of the Royal Blind Society (New South Wales). She has been president of the ex-AAMWAS Association of New South Wales for eight years.

In 2020, Elva was living in a retirement home in Sydney, where she celebrated her 100th birthday.

[1] From Blue to Khaki p. 217

Published resources

Archival resources

  • Australian War Memorial, Research Centre
    • Studio portrait of NF482322 Lieutenant (Lt) Elva Baikie, Amenities Officer for the Army women's services
    • An informal group of members of the Australian Women's Army Services (AWAS) model their improvised costumes for a musical comedy and revue.
    • Interview with Elva Batt (When the war came to Australia)
  • National Archives of Australia, National Office, Canberra
    • BAIKIE ELVA MAY : Service Number - NF482322 : Date of birth - 14 Sep 1920 : Place of birth - SYDNEY NSW : Place of enlistment - VICTORIA BARRACKS SYDNEY : Next of Kin - BAIKIE JAMES

Digital resources

Related entries

  • Related Organisations
    • Australian Army Medical Women's Service (AAMWS) (1942 - 1951)
    • Voluntary Aid Detachments (VAD) (1914 - )
    • Australian Women's Army Service (AWAS) (1941 - 1947)
  • Presided
    • Ex-AAMWS Association of NSW Inc.