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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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Chimney Tops

by cambsaction

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Flores Cherrie
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03 August 2005

I was born in St Lucia and went to school in Trinidad. When I finished school Lady Officers from England came and asked us to join the army. They told me that they would like us to join and that we would go to London . That's how I ended up joining the Pay Corp. The trip over was interesting. before we came to England we travelled to America. From New York we came to England on the first Queen Elizabeth ship. The Glenn Miller Band was on board and I had been asked to sing with them, but we weren't able to because it was suspected that there was a submarine in the water. We landed in Scotland and travelled down to London by train. I was very impressed by all of the chimneys! St Lucia didn't have any. I did my induction training in Sidcup. we learnt how to march and I was picked to demonstrate the marching.

I was very happy, everybody was nice. I used to feel so sad, we could see the doodlebugs coming over and we were afraid of dying. Because we were based in Sidcup, Kent, we were in the flight path of the doodlebug bombs that were aimed at London, and often they fell short - we saw houses destroyed.

I was working in the Pay Corp. We used to calculate and pay the salaries of the armed forces. Because we kept being interrupted by bombs, we ended up being trained on the Burroughes Machine.

During my service time we were taken to London to with Sylvia Pankhurst (daughter of Emily Pankhurst). We had tea with her.

When the war ended I stayed here and got into showbusiness - stage and television. I even worked with Sammy Davis Jnr and with Anna Massey.

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