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Life at Hill Farm: Part 2

by Researcher 236526

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Archive List > United Kingdom > Essex

Contributed by 
Researcher 236526
People in story: 
Blanche Polly
Location of story: 
South Ockendon, Essex
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
03 August 2003

March 3 1940
Just hearing the news when Jean [a daughter] came running in to say the camp [Buckles Lane soldiers] was on fire, well we raced across the meadow, me in my green slippers so could n't go right up to the fire as the muck kept pulling off my slippers. After an hour we returned home, the fire lit the place up for miles around, it proved the cook house had caught fire and adjoining officers quarters all burned down to the ground.

march 9 1940
What people can see in coming up here I don't kmow, visitors must think we are very lonely on the farm, much to the contrary we never have a quiet moment, always someone here, as soon as one has departed someone else is here and let me state we don't have to ask people to tea, they come without being asked. Now we are rationed tea will be lacking in coming foreward.

Jan 1941
When I finished my last book I really should have started another. Things really did begin to happen then. Hitler invaded the low countries and next came the collapse of France in JUNE 1940. Then England was threatened with invasion and July was a very black month indeed, everyone going around with long faces ,no one cared whether you id anything or not.

August 16 brought air raids to this country. I remember it well on a Friday morning , I was doing the bedroon, hearing a rumble in the sky, the Huns came as far as Tilbury and dropped their bombs. The sirens wailed for the first time. MY how they put the fear of god in you, today sirens make no effect, one just goes on with work or shopping as if nothing is happening. I really believe you can get used to anything. From august 16th raids increased daily. We had breakfast and dinner in the dugout and one saturday we ran to the dugout with out tea. The great day to remember was September 15th 1940. It was on a sunday afternoon we ran to the dugout and german planes were coming down in all directions with smoke pouring from them. In all 185 planes counted down, that was a sad day for Hitler. Day raids continued for some time 'till today only one odd plane comes over at intervals. We had night raids very badly last sunday, december 29th. The city of London was set on fire plainly seen from my bedroom window, I could even see when an oil bomb was dropped in an already blazing fire. It lit the sky up so I could read in my bedroom. I don't think it will happen again as everyone is advised to put out incendiary bombs that start the fires.
Last friday, DECEMBER 27TH, at 8p.m. the farm was lit up with incendiary bombs, then H.E. bombs came whizzing down. We got under the table, I thought they would never stop bursting. Next morning we found 10 bomb holes on the farm, one fell right on an appple tree and uprooted it as if it was pulled up with a rope, right beside my chicken house, frightened my chickens so it stopped my chickens laying when they are very dear at 4 shillings a dozen. However they are picking up now.

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