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Memories of the War in Moss Side

by gmractiondesk

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Archive List > The Blitz

Contributed by 
People in story: 
Doris Sloane (nee Yarwood)
Location of story: 
Moss Side
Background to story: 
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
01 May 2005

I got married on 15th July 1939 and I was just over 21. I had only been married a short time when my husband got his calling up papers. I'd just found out that I was 2 months pregnant.

He went in January 1940 and I went to live with my Mum as the rent on my house was too much for me alone.

Once the baby was born in April 1940, Mother minded him whilst I went to work. I used to be on the stage when I was younger, as a chorus girl and I got in on the Christmas pantomine at the Palace Theatre, Manchester in Dick Whittington.

The bombs dropped so they stopped the evening performances and just continued with the matinees, so I got even less money. You didn't get the financial support with babies, like you do now!

Eventually, they closed the Theatre down as the bombing were getting worse. At the top of Great Western Street there was a firm called, Army Lorries and I was employed to paint them. It was a really interesting job but it was very low paid. I did this job for 2-3 years, then my husband came home on leave and we had another son in 1943 and as everything was rationed it was a struggle to live.

Both my brothers were killed in the war, but my husband came in 1945. He couldn't get work as thousands of troops came home. You couldn't get coal - my mother used to chop chairs up for fire.

I had 3 sons, the next son in 1948, and one day I went to get my son weighed and one of the nurses threw themselves on top of me and my son - there had been machine guns firing. The building is still there to this day.

The mound of ground where the air raid shelter we used to use, Broadfield Road, off Great Western Street, Moss Side, is still there.

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