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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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My Childhood Experience Near the End of the War

by cambsaction

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Archive List > Childhood and Evacuation

Contributed by 
cambsaction
People in story: 
Mr Cecil Jarvis, Mrs Elsie Watkins - Grandma, Mr James Watkins - Grandad
Location of story: 
Yaxley
Background to story: 
Civilian
Article ID: 
A7356305
Contributed on: 
28 November 2005

My name is Cecil Jarvis and this is my story of what i can remember when i was a child of 6. I was 14 months old when my dad was killed in action abroad, and I went to live with my grandma and grandad because my mum joined the ATS. As I got to school age I can remember the Americans being based at Connington Airdrome, the next village where I lived. When my mum was home on leave I used to go for a walk with her to see the aeroplanes take off. I can remember the American airmen marching from the airdrome up Hole Road, past my house and up Church Lane. I also remember the old American army lorries, and there were 2 American airmen who used to come to my house and talk to my grandma amd grandad. I can remember one of the Lancaster Bombers coming down at the other end of main street, which is called water end. It crashed in Robinets Orchard near the railway lines. I can remember the Germans dropping incinderies in Yaxley, they thought it was Farcet Petrol Dump but it was the brick yards. At Worman Cross my grandma and I also stood in the line waiting for 1 hour for something, only to find the air raid siren, it was on top of the fire station tower. Meat was very scarce we had mainly rabbit stew or a bone stew, at christmas we had home made presents and we had to make do with dried egg powder to make puddings ect. If a slaughter man killed a pig we used to have pig chitlins. My grandma used to pick and bottle fruit ready for christmas. My grandma used to patch our clothes and my grandad used to repair shoes, we had to make do and mend. Most nights we could not sleep because of the aeroplanes going over, we used to sit at the side of the chimney brest, grandad one side, me and granma the other side, it was the strongest point of the house, we had a cumulater wireless that had to be charged up, we would listen for the news at certain times. The christmas tree had peg candle holders with little candles on, my grandma made christmas as best she could, I can remember the warden coming round and telling people to put the light out.

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