- Contributed by
- People in story:
- Roy Maynard
- Location of story:
- By Kenley Aerodrome August 1940
- Background to story:
- Article ID:
- Contributed on:
- 09 November 2003
I was 12 years old and with my mother and father and my young brother Ian we were " house minding" for my aunt and uncle, who had evacuated themselves to Devon.Actually it was a bungalow with a garage adjacent built into a high grassy bank.The property was in Hornchurch hill(No:2)Whyteleafe Surrey, just below "Battle of Britain"air station, Kenley.
The date is Sunday 18th August 1940.
The weather was warm and sunny, my brother and I had had an enjoyable morning in our aunts very large garden, mum was cooking a roast beef Sunday lunch. she called us in for lunch about 1255 Mum dished up the meal when the sirens sounded for an air raid. One immediately heard more planes taking off from Kenley following some a few minutes before the sirens. Our meal was put into the oven, and we made our way to the garage set into grassy bank, which was our air raid shelter! Dad had hardly shut the double door of the garage when all hell was let loose. It was Kenley's turn to be blitzed. The next several minutes, which seemed an eternity even to this day were hell as guns fired aircraft swooped and dived, bombs exploded ,A stick of bombs fell behind the bungalow, one hitting the side of a anderson air raid shelter 2 doors away, anothe blew the doors of our garage wide open dust and acrid smells of explosive materials filled our meagre refuge.
We could see aircraft whirling around while others were diving, we saw parachutes descending, and the noise was frightening, then the ARP brought 2 people from the stricken Anderson shelter into our garage. and I can still see us all huddled at the back of the garage, and I am sure we were all praying -I was. Then the sounds began to subside until they were lost into oblivion. Outside the air smelt as I've never smelt it before and thank god never as bad again
I'm now 75, and this all happened when I was 12, 63 years ago, but its still very fresh in my mind.
By the way we never did have our lunch, it was covered in dust and dirt, but we didn't feel very hungry afterwards
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