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WW2 - People's War

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Devotion to Duty

by Ipswich Museum

Contributed by 
Ipswich Museum
People in story: 
Mrs Joan Treacher
Location of story: 
Shotley, Suffolk
Background to story: 
Civilian
Article ID: 
A3342025
Contributed on: 
29 November 2004

During the latter years of the war I was a Post Office mail van driver for the GPO. One of my deliveries consisted of driving a large mail van full of parcels and letters for our sailors stationed at HMS Ganges, Shotley. Because this area was classifies as a military war zone, there were spaced out sentry boxes manned by armed sailors all along the way from Wherstead Road Bourne Bridge to Shotley.

My red-letter day occurred when one of these sentries stepped out into the middle of the road intimating with his gun that I should stop and climb down from my van. Complying with this request he then asked me for my identity card; after reading it I was then given permission to continue my journey.

This sentry wasn’t taking any chances, as, event though he saw my Post Office uniform and the familiar red GPO mail van, these facts didn’t stop him from carrying out his duty — making sure that I wasn’t a spy in disguise.

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