- Contributed by
- People in story:
- Mrs. Dorothy Burley
- Location of story:
- Bedford and Turvey, Bedfordshire
- Background to story:
- Article ID:
- Contributed on:
- 15 November 2005
Wartime memories of Bedford and Turvey
Working on munitions in Bedford
“I worked on munitions at W. H. Allen’s in Bedford. I was working with nuts and bolts and washers for parts of the engines for the ships. The micrometer that you used to have to use was so difficult for me to read and to understand what it was all about. But you had to get the right measurement on this micrometer to see if it was an inch or even a tiny bit out. They’d throw it all back and say, ‘Do it again!’ You must have it exactly right to fit these machines in the ships. I worked a machine called a lathe. But I think the most frightening thing was when they came over and bombed Bedford. We were all busy working and the air raid sirens went off but the bombs dropped before the air raid sirens had finished. We all rushed out to the shelter but it was all over. The shelter was at the top end near the railway bridge and we were down near the gates more or less. That really frightened me to death, well it frightened us all really. It was a terrific bang.
Air activity over Turvey, Bedfordshire
I remember we had a dog fight in the sky over by Turvey Church when the bomb dropped at Woodside where Mrs Lindsell used to live, up Newton Lane, over by the Keeper’s Lodge. It demolished part of the house of up there. There was this dog fight going on, there were two Spitfires trying to get this German plane down. They got it down over Northampton way when it sort of came down. Of course we were all stood out there cheering.
When all the planes where at Thurleigh they used to come over in droves and we used to cheer them on. At night when they used to come back they all had their headlights on, these planes, it was wonderful to see. You could see them flashing their headlights as they were going back home to Thurleigh. You could hear them, the Lancaster, it only had one engine by the sound of it, hopefully it made it alright!”
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