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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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Contributed by 
BBC Southern Counties Radio
People in story: 
Julie Allen
Location of story: 
Penge
Background to story: 
Civilian
Article ID: 
A5170367
Contributed on: 
18 August 2005

One of my vivid memories as a child was about 1943 when I must have been 7 or 8 years old. I was on my way home from school at lunch time and the Air Raid Siren went off. I started to run to get home quickly and suddenly heard an aircraft above. I looked up and the aircraft was so low you could see the pilot and the fact that it was a German aircraft. I was terrified and frantically looked for somewhere to hide. I was passing a Home and Colonial food store in Maple Road, Penge and rushed into the doorway to see if I could get in but they had locked the door. I banged and banged on the door for someone to let me in. An assistant came and opened the door and took me in and down to the cellar where all the stock and provisions were kept. The other assistants were already down there. They comforted me, sat me on a barrel and gave me a biscuit and a piece of cheese and asked me where I lived. After the All Clear siren went off they took me upstairs and let me out and I ran home to my Mum, who was very worried.

Afterwards we found out that the German pilot that had flown over had machined gunned a playground in a school in Lewisham and had killed lots of children, obviously before the siren had gone off, otherwise they would have been in a shelter. This made National Press at the time. The pilot was eventually shot down.

This story was entered on the People’s War website by Charlie Sever on behalf of Julie Allen. Julie fully understands the site’s terms and conditions.

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Air Raids and Other Bombing Category
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