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After 1939

by James Feest

Contributed by 
James Feest
People in story: 
General people in Worthing
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Contributed on: 
10 May 2005

One Dunkirk was all over the Luftwaffe started in earnest to attack the UK. Whilst Worthing was by no means a prime target, from Spring 1940 to Spring 1945 bombs, both HE and incendary fell at varios times all over the town.
During the Battle of Britain we were able to watch the streams of high flying German aircraft flying northwards towards London, with the RAF harrasing them, and with the occasional (and sometimes several) aircraft falling from the sky. We once saw, far away over the Downs, two parachutes falling, with one man whose parachute failed to open, and he fell to his death.
With the Threat of an invasion of the South Coast in 1941 most of the Worthing schoolchildren (and most likely from other coastal towns) were evacuated to the North of England. The two Worthing High Schools (Boys and Girls) were sent in April to Nottinghamshire. The main part of the Boys School was billeted on to the Newark Grammar School, but as that school was not large enough, the lower school, which included myself were sent to Southwell to the Minster Choir school. Whilst some of the boys were billeted in the Bishop's palace and other clerical houses etc., I was taken in by a nice (to me) old lady in a tiny cottage which had 1+1/2 rooms downstairs and two rooms upstairs, with a 'wash-house' by the back door, a coal shed, and a 'bucket and chuck it' toilet, which the nightsoil team collected once a week.
But by October 1941 everyone had returned to Worthing.
Whilst I was away one of my schoolboy friends was killed by a bomb which fell on his house. But otherwise nobody I knew personnaly was killed or injured during the war.

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