Early Life

As briefly mentioned in my previous post Dad wrote a book called "My Early Life" He never tried to get it published even though he kept saying he would have liked to try - the nearest was snippets on the BBC Wales Website a few years ago.
It was about what it was like growing up as a child during the War years (2nd W.W.) along with some memories of other things he got up to.
His Brother John did the sketches in it, most of the information and places are local to us here in North East Wales which if you take the time to read this blog many of you won't recognise but I hope you will still enjoy it, who knows you may recognise a name a street or something.
I will write it here just as Dad wrote it.

This is my recollection of my early childhood I was born in Bromfield Park in Mold on the 8th May 1940 just after the start of the second world war, so to start life for parents must have been very hard indeed with the austere conditions of the day.
Food and Clothing were rationed and to a child of that time the most important thing was rationed - sweets! but more about them later.
As far as I can recall I must have memories from when I was about 3 years old, The house we lived in was on a bit of a hill we had a clear view of the skies over towards the direction of Liverpool.
I was taken out of the house on more than one occasion to see "the lights" these were the beams of searchlights up in the sky 
"Do you think our guns will "Gerrum" Dad"
These of course were looking for German aircraft who were bombing the cities and docks. Again as I recall being taken by my father to the recreation ground in Mold to see 2 searchlights and their crews. This was in daylight and maybe they were practising I do not know. I also remember we had a small Anderson Air Raid Shelter underground in our back garden to which we were to retire to in an air raid and I have vague recollections of being in this shelter I certainly remember playing in it when I was four of five.  I shall say at this point I also remember that just after the war  MY Father and others dug it up and a man whose garden backed on to ours  who I called Uncle Alf took this shelter to be his coal shed and I know it was there at his house for 30 years after - I often wonder  if it is still there today.
But having dug it up there was a large hole to fill in our garden and all sorts of rubble and rubbish was put in this to fill it including a small battered red pedal car which I cherished. I can remember to this day I shed buckets of tears as I watched it disappear under the rubble and soil. I could not take my eyes off it and crried and cried until it was out of sight.

Another memory was of lowering the paper blackouts on the windows of our house at night These were made of a stiffish black or dark grey paper with a piece of wood running along the top and bottom. These were lowered at dusk and pinned at the sides with drawing pins so that when the lights were put on in the house not a glimmer of light would be seen from outside.  It was said that aircraft could see a chink of light from a great height and of course this was what they were looking for and in those days navigation was not as good as these days and by dead reckoning by the stars and in daylight, by ground maps, and flying from Germany looking for Liverpool they could be as much as 30 miles out.
I remember listening to the wireless for news I of course was very young and just happened to be there but at this young age I can remember the droning voice of Lord Haw Haw  he always started by saying - This is Germany calling  Germany calling - then would go on to say how Britain was losing the war  and suffering great losses. Also on the radio were programmes put out to assist the war effort I don't remember much about these I can recall one was called Workers Playtime which was put out to keep up morale of the factory workers by playing lively music one or two comedians and interviews with workers. We listened to all news programmes but as a child they didnt mean much to me,  but on a Sunday night it was a must to listen to the Palm Court Orchestral Concert.which was listened to without fail, I in my early years preferred Dick Barton Special Agent and his 2 sidekicks Snowy and Jock.

I shall leave this here for now - As I said times were hard and food rationed - more to follow soon


Post a Comment