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WW2 - People's War

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Barbara's Memories of 1939-1945.

by Leeds Libraries

Contributed by 
Leeds Libraries
People in story: 
Barbara Muntz (nee Fox).
Location of story: 
Leeds
Background to story: 
Civilian
Article ID: 
A3288954
Contributed on: 
17 November 2004

School photograph age 5 years

I was born on 23rd April 1935 in Leeds, West Yorkshire. I do not have many memories of the War, but the few I have are as follows:

When an Air Raid took place my brother and I were taken to the local Co-op at the top of our street as they had a storeroom that was used as an Air-Raid shelter. I remember being put into my siren suit and being fitted for my Mickey Mouse Gas-Mask. I was not at all happy with this because I do not like anything to cover my face.

My brother who is three years older than me was evacuated to Retford. I remember going on the train to visit him and the Station Master calling out ‘Cherry Halt’ Retford.

My uncle, who was stationed in the Middle East, used to send parcels of Turkish- Delight, which was a great luxury for all the family. Another uncle of mine who lived in Australia sent food parcels which contained most of the things that we could not obtain at home. My main memories were of tins of peaches, pears and pineapple.

Everybody had to use ration books. As fresh bananas were not easily obtainable my mother used to go to the local Thrift store to buy dried ones. They looked horrible but were very nice to eat. My mother had to use dried eggs, as fresh eggs were not always available.

An unexploded bomb was dropped at the bottom of my grandmother’s street. Everyone was evacuated while the army defused it. Fortunately no one was hurt.

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