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WW2 - People's War

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Helen Tinson's WW2 Experience

by sun225

Contributed by 
sun225
People in story: 
helen tinson
Location of story: 
derbyshire
Background to story: 
Civilian
Article ID: 
A4116304
Contributed on: 
25 May 2005

As I was 8 when the war ended my memories may be sketchy.A friend in Long Eaton slightly older worked in a nursery caring for children whose mothers worked at chilwell depot, probably making ammunition, the children had few toys and made the most of cardboard boxes and piles of old tyres. She tells me one factory near the canal bridge was used to make khaki fabric for soldiers haversacks. She could give you more idea of life in the town.

When i was a lass we lived on a small farm and were fortunate enough to be almost self-sufficient.We kept a few cows and had a milk round, supplying most of the village. No milk bottles then we used churns.I carried a small churn with a measure and people used a jug on the door stop.I remember the winters - we used a large sledge and the horse was a lovely shire called Ginnie.We were able to make our own butter - I used a small glass churn. I was asked at Sudbury Hall kitchen recently how long it took for the cream to turn into butter - sorry - i don't remember that.

Sugar and tea were,of course very scarce on the rations allowed so my mother would barter butter for these. There was a community spririt and people helped one and other when they could.The school I attended had a dug-out air raid shelter in the grounds,hidden in the grass on the farm we had a brick reinforced stucture - it came in useful for milk storage. The only bomb dropped near bye was two miles away.The shelter was there but we used crawl under the kitchen with the dog.We had hens and a pig too.Dont mention pork, i remember the local butchur coming!

Chicken was a luxury.My mother plucked them and a few went to the customers in the village at christmas.There was a shortage of many food itams - no oranges or bananas - so we were lucky to have a orchard.I remember queueing for the one block of walls ice cream each family was allowed.I also remember riding down quiet country lanes in a horse and trap because petrol too was rationed, very little traffic, those were the days.And the whole village turned out for the street party at the end of the war.

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