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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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Bookbinding and armatures in Cambridge

by cambsaction

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Archive List > Family Life

Contributed by 
cambsaction
People in story: 
Ruby Marriott, nee Cook, Kathleen Harrison, nee Cook
Location of story: 
Milton, Cambridge
Background to story: 
Civilian
Article ID: 
A5464622
Contributed on: 
01 September 2005

This story was submitted to the People’s War site by Margaret Waddy of the BBC Radio Cambridgeshire Story Gatherer Team on behalf of Ruby Marriott, and has been added to the site with her permission. The author fully understands the site’s terms and conditions.

I was 18 when the war broke out. I’d left school at 14; I went to school in Milton Road.

My first job was with Grays, the bookbinders. We used to bind books for the University Library. Then I moved to Grays’ factory (no connection to the bookbinders) when the war started, making armatures for Spitfires. I used to wire them — it was a fiddly, complicated job.

When the war started, my sister and I took in evacuees. There was a little girl who didn’t want anything to do with her mother when she visited. They’d come from London. My sister Kathleen was living at home. She stayed to look after the child while I went to work. My mother had died when I wasn’t very old and my father had died later, so there were just the two of us.

We had two brothers. One went in the Air Force and was killed. The other went in the Army and was sent to India. He survived the war and came home.

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