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WW2 - People's War

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bombs and things

by chrissiemc

Contributed by 
chrissiemc
People in story: 
christina wiliamson
Location of story: 
glasgow
Background to story: 
Army
Article ID: 
A1962605
Contributed on: 
04 November 2003

When the war started, my brother James was 11 and i was 9,my mam got us evacuated from Glasgow to Dunblane. Where we spent a lot of the time saying we wanted to come home,which, eventually we did, and there we stayedtill the war ended,after all we were city kids.!
When the bombing started in earnest we didnt know which shelter had been allocated to us and the night they bombed Clydebank, mam James and i decided to stand under the railway bridge opposite our tennament, we were there for about an hour listening to the thump of the bombs and the rattle of the ack ack guns when an air raid warden came and guided us up to the shelter in Dove hill school playground.
We found out that we had been standing under a train full of ammunition which had stopped when the sirens sounded.!!
so if a bomb had hit the train there would have been nothing left of us or our area!

Next day we went to see the damage in Clydebank and mam remarked that tho the tenements were flattened, the row of toilets were still standing, so, when the sirens went the next nightthe three of us crushed into our toilet, which we had to back into anyway and my mam was 16stone.
That didnt last long and it was back to the shelter in the school.
The night the land mine was dropped on a tenement in Kent street, flattening it and killing all the people in it. the blast blew the school gates against the shelter door, and all of us were lifted off our feet and landed on our heads.
When the all clear sounded, we had to walk home through piles of broken glass as all the windows in the houses had been blown out and the warden had the cheek to tell us"put that light out" The blackout curtains had been blown out too.
We also spent our time putting out incendiary boms with sand and water, kids like us and old men too, so we all did our bit in the war.

I have other memories too, of the day the coalman decided not to carry our 1 bag per fortnight of 1cwt of coal up to the top of the stairs in the very bad winter we had.
All the women ganged up on him and he never behaved like that again!!

When the war was over, and we teenagers celebrated in George square, we came home and on the way, we had knocked down the baffle walls which were supposed to save us from the blast, all we did was lean against them and they fell, we must have had the best propaganda team in the world!
Our shoes were hinged wooden clogs and our clothes were made with anything we could find, we drank our tea from jam jars and our pots and pans had been repaired so many times its a wonder they were usable.
But we still managed to laugh and we survived. We were the lucky ones.

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