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15 October 2014
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Billeted in Olympia

by BBC Southern Counties Radio

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Contributed by 
BBC Southern Counties Radio
People in story: 
Beryl Tucknott
Location of story: 
Brighton, East Sussex and Hinckley, Leicestershire
Article ID: 
A4689363
Contributed on: 
03 August 2005

My Dad was eventually called up for service — I think 1942. He would have been almost 40 years of age. His eyesight wasn’t good, so he was drafted into the Royal Army Ordnance Corps. He was stationed in Hinckley in Leicestershire, for a while. This is a copy of the Clerks and Storemen's poem:

No.2 Clerks and Storemen’s School RAOC

Then from the beaches of Dunkirk,
Our shattered armies came.
So they could rest and train to fight
The German hordes again.

For there across the Channel stood
With all their might at hand
Those Adolf Hitler stooges
Awaiting his command.

But this command he never gave
For Hitler is no fool
He knew that he would have to fight
The “Clerks & Storemen’s School”!

Hinckley, January 1943

For the remainder of the war, my Dad was billeted in London, in Olympia. He brought home a postcard of the ballroom and showed us where his bed was, right next to the stage.

He was then cooking for the men. He used to come home some weekends, carrying his little attaché case which I still have. He used to bring home ‘goodies’. I remember tins of condensed milk which were used to make rice puddings etc. Mum used to tell him off, saying that one day he’d caught by the ‘redcaps’ (Military Policemen) who patrolled Brighton Station. He never was!

This story was submitted to the People's War site by volunteer Sue Craig on behalf of Beryl Tucknott, and has been added to the site with her permission. Beryl fully understands the site's terms and conditions.

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