Life in early 20th century Britain

'Growing up in Kent'

We moved out to Lordship Lane, and that was a flat downstairs, and that was just two bedrooms - no bathrooms, no inside toilets, nothing like that; it was just a tin bath in front of the fire.

The sister next to me, she was quite poorly, she was away a lot. And the youngest, the one born in 1944, towards the end of the war - she had asthma badly; and that was a nightmare time, and I can recall that dreadful winter - it must have been '46, '47 - very, very cold, no coal.

Dad chopped up most of the furniture to keep the fires going, so that Pam could be kept virtually alive in a warm room.

Looking back now, I don't know how our parents coped. There was next to no food, next to no coal, yet somehow we kept warm.

We woke up - I mean, now, they wouldn't dream of waking up with frost on the windows - but then (laughs) we would literally have to scrape the frost off the windows and go and light a match under the bucket to get some water - it had just frozen solid overnight.

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