Stella Hughes was born in London on 5th June, 1926. She is the daughter of Thomas Griffiths Hughes, a haberdasher's assistant from Aberystwyth, and Elizabeth Ellen Kershaw, a lady's maid from Bethnal Green. They had two other children, Muriel Hughes and Jack Hughes.
Stella attended Wellington Avenue School for Girls in Chingford and was thirteen years old when the Second World War broke out. During the Blitz Stella, like other children in London, only "attended school on Monday mornings in order to collect books and homework and this was returned to the school on Friday mornings (air raids pe