- Contributed by
- People in story:
- Joan Wright
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- Contributed on:
- 27 June 2005
On the day that war was declared I was at a funeral! I was married and lived in Mossley Hill. I remember how I felt! Not having any children I was called up to various occupations. One was an aircraft factory in Allerton Road where I was put on inspecting small aeroplane parts from the factory. My husband was called up and sent to the Middle East.
I volunteered for the Fire Service and was attached to the catering department, which called at all the depots around Liverpool 6 and 17 with the supplies. Before that I had to go for training in Grove Street. (The School for the Deaf had been taken over). I learned all about the docks and their layout, also the 24-hour clock, which I often used.
The air raids increased and a great deal of our shipping was lost. The rationing was introduced and one person’s rations wasn’t much. Then came the terrible 1941 May Blitz with the centre of Liverpool flattened and parts of Bootle and hospitals getting bombed, and many lives lost. We had to do night—watch in turn and usually
just got home from work and the sirens would go. I would often stay in the safest place under the stairs. My husband was away three years before getting leave. While he was home one evening the sirens went and most people went to the shelter in the road, but we went under the stairs. The planes came over and the noise increased. A terrific bang and swoosh of blast — a landmine had flattened most of the houses nearby. We were covered in dust and rubble. No roof or windows. We hadn’t electricity in the house but gas. One mantle was still in the bracket in one piece. All the windows shattered with the glass like daggers in the far wall. Can’t remember much, I know. I couldn’t speak for about two weeks after I went back to live with my mother in Abercromby Square. While in the Fire Service I caught diphtheria and was in hospital for five weeks. When the sirens went I just had to hope for the best. While I was in, the Duke of Kent was killed in an aircraft accident. I eventually came home and had to resign from the Fire Service. They send me a Christmas parcel every year, bless them.
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