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The 1941 Blitz and Other Memories

by ateamwar

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Archive List > Childhood and Evacuation

Contributed by 
People in story: 
Glad Pearson and Family
Location of story: 
Castlefields, Shrewsbury and Liverpool L1
Background to story: 
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
16 June 2005

I was very young when the war started, but I can remember my sister and I being evacuated to a place called Castlefields in Shrewsbury.

I can remember all of the children being lined up carrying their possessions in pillowcases, we stayed with a family called Roberts, who were very good to us, but I wanted to come home all of the time, so my mother sent the fare from my sister and I to come home. Apparently my sister spent my fare so I had to stay there whilst she went home. I had to wait until some money was sent for my fare before I could go home. I was put in charge of the guard, which I can remember very clearly, sitting in the carriage with a lot of strangers, crying most of the time.

When the train arrived at Lime Street Station, Liverpool, the guard was shouting, "Does anyone own this little girl?" (Something which I do not think would be allowed to happen in this day and age).

We cannot have stayed in Shrewsbury for very long, because we were back in Liverpool throughout the heavy Blitz. I can remember the sirens sounding and us all having to go into an air raid shelter. I lived right in the centre of the city, so the bombs were all around us. Our church, 'St Michael's' was hit by a landmine*, missing lots of tenements all around it. On the mornings after the air raids all us children would be out collecting shrapnel.

There were quite a lot of people killed during the war in Liverpool L1, the church of St. Michael was rebuilt on the same site as the original church (The original church was a well known landmark to seafarers entering the River Mersey because of its very tall steeple. The church was also unique in so far as it was an exact replica of the more famous 'St. Martin's In the Field's', London.

There is a memorial in the grounds of the new church to all of the local residents who lost their lives during the Blitz, in the form of a Remembrance Garden. The garden is maintained with the help of the city council and makes quite an attractive memorial.

Also, I would like to mention that my mother was an Air Raid Warden, or in The Civil Defence (CD) as it was later called, her favourite phrase would be, "Put that light out!!"

I can remember my mother for quite a number of years in her CD uniform marching from the Cento path on Armistice Day and feeling very proud.

This is just a few of my thoughts and memories of childhood during and just after the Second World War.

'This story was submitted to the People’s War site by BBC Radio Merseyside’s People’s War team on behalf of Glad Pearson and has been added to the site with his / her permission. The author fully understands the site's terms and conditions.'

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