- Contributed by
- People in story:
- Marion Powell, Maurice Cooper, Albert Cooper, Roy Cooper, Joan Cooper
- Location of story:
- Wollaton Park, Nottingham
- Background to story:
- Article ID:
- Contributed on:
- 01 September 2005
This story was submitted to the People’s War site by CSV/BBC Radio Nottingham on behalf of Marion Powell, Maurice Cooper, Albert Cooper, Roy Cooper and Joan Cooper with their permission. The Author fully understands the site’s terms and conditions.
I was 13 when the war broke out — I think the sirens went off that very day!
My three brothers went to fight for their country. Maurice (the eldest) volunteered for the Merchant Navy as a Marconi Radio Operator — he was on the Atlantic Convoys and never got over being seasick. He was missing — presumed dead in 1941 after being torpedoed.
My other brothers, one in the Army and one in the Royal Navy were in the thick of fighting and had harrowing times but survived.
It was awful for poor Mother especially when in 1942 I succumbed to TB in the Hospital. I saw many people die — including my own sister who had just got married.
We had our lessons in the Church Hall and at night, the dreaded ‘smoke screens’ were lit — giving us all black nostrils!
Food was very bland but filling. I got extra milk & eggs and the awful Cod Liver Oil & Malt! We could get chocolate but it often meant queuing.
The Palais de Dance was full of Polish & American Servicemen, quite exciting for us all! The last bus left at 9.30pm and we walked home. We were quite safe — even when the sirens went off — or we felt safe anyway.
I seem to remember being taken to the Flying Horse Pub for a meal and there was a limit on what you could spend — it was seven & sixpence!
There was some bombing in Nottingham but not in my area.
We managed to enjoy ourselves in spite of everything — and we biked a lot!
It was SO wonderful when VE & VJ days came and at last we were at peace but of course many things were rationed for some years and our fighting forces didn’t get over the trauma for many years — if ever.
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