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Leaving of Liverpool

by Lancshomeguard

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Archive List > Childhood and Evacuation

Contributed by 
People in story: 
Carrie Lemaire
Location of story: 
Isle of Man
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
04 August 2005

My father was in the King's Own lancashire regiment in Liverpool at the outbreak of the war. He served with the BEF in France and on his return to Liverpool was sent to the Isle of Man guarding the Italian and German prisoners on board to the IOM. While he was there he was quite worried about my mum with 7 children being left in Liverpool. Whilst in the IOM he spoke with his commanding officers to see if he could bring us to the IOM for safety, which he did. We had never heard of the IOM before and my mum and an auntie and uncle got all the children ready to board The Viking boat and when we arrived on the boat it was full of prisoners. On the journey over we watched the prisoners eating all the bread and cheese sandwiches. When we arrived on the island we were met by some of the army officers who took us to a house at the end of Athel Street which is now all refurbished and looks nothing like when we went. We were put into a basement and had to sleep on stretchers, we were there for about 3 weeks and my father and his mate were searching the IOM for accomodation to leave us on the island. We eventually found a place at the Eairy at Foxdale. My father then went away with his unit to Alexandria for the rest of the war, just writing 2 letters a week which i had to read because mum could not read or write in english. We did not see Dad for 4 years, although he left my mother pregnant with her eighth child. While we lived at the Eairy, the school holidays i went to help a lady with her tomato nurseries at Foxdale, while there i had to go with her husband and daughter to Knockaloe Farm where all the prisoners were interned. Each morning Mr Law brought 4 prisoners back with him to work on his farm. We were in the back of the wagon with the prisoners. Then while at Mrs Law's i had to take prisoners tea and coffee and sandwiches to the field where the guard was and hand them to the prisoners. During the afternoons Mrs Law's daughter and myself had to go into the nurseries to tie up the tomato plants with the prisoners who were called Earheart, Gustav and Otto. Before we left Liverpool we were taught in school the air raid alarm system and one dinner time my sister Anne and i were going home for dinner and the air raid siren went and as we were rushing home, an anti-aircraft plane swooped down on us and shot a load of bullets at us. At this moment a man from the corner house seen us 2 little ones and run out and grabbed us and took us for safety into his Anderson shelter in his back garden. Mother was hysterical waiting for us but we got home safe. When me and Anne came out of the house we ran back to the spot and collected a load of shrapnel off the pavement. During the air-raids my mum had to take 7 of us to a nearby mansion house where we sheltered from the bombs in the basement till the all clear went. We heard many bombs dropping around us but we were spared.

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