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WW2 - People's War

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Under the stairs!

by Angela Ng

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Archive List > Childhood and Evacuation

Contributed by 
Angela Ng
People in story: 
Sheila Richardson
Location of story: 
Elswick, Newcastle
Article ID: 
A4444247
Contributed on: 
13 July 2005

I'm a pupil from Heaton Manor Comprehensive school, Newcastle Upon-Tyne, entering Sheila Richardsons story onto the website, and they fully understand the website terms and conditions of use.
When the war began I was 5 years old, living in Elswick, Newcastle with my mother, sister and 2 brothers when my father went to war. During the war we used to only go to school for half days, and we had to carry gas masks and identity cards everywhere. Quite often we would get half way to school and have to turn back when the air raid sirens went off. Our shelters were in the front street, and we shared with our neighbours. I was never evacuated, my mother wouldn’t let me go, me and my sister used to sleep in the cupboard under the stairs, as my mam thought it would be safer if any bombs were dropped! One night Incendiary bombs were dropped all along my street, hitting most of the houses, luckily they missed ours! The same night St. Michaels Church was badly damaged by bombing, but no one was hurt that night. I was 11 years old when the war ended in 1945. Everyone was happy and there were street parties and celebrations everywhere. Rationing carried on for years after the war ended, when I was 15 I was working in the local Co-op when tinned fruit came into stock for the first time since the war had finished four years ago! Everyone was excited and couldn’t believe the tins piled high!

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