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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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A Wartime 21st Birthday: Joining the Northumberland Fusiliers

by ambervalley

Contributed by 
People in story: 
Tom Smith
Location of story: 
Ripley and Amble
Background to story: 
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
24 June 2004

I joined the Territiorial Army at 17 years old for 4 years really to have a holiday.Just before my discharge I came back to Ripley becuse my mother's family were down here.Her name was Myra Smith and she had several shops in Northumberland mainly in Amble. Our house in Lyncroft Ave,Ripley wasn't ready so we lived with my aunt and uncle - Agnes and Matt Pearson. On September 1 1939 ,my 21st birthday, a telegram came which said 'Report to your unit in Amble as soon as possible'. I travelled up north by train overnight so I didn't get any birthday! The regiment I was going to join was 7th Battalion Royal Northumberland Fusiliers.When I arrived they had already left( they couldn't wait for me!) so I had to join the 9th Battalion.

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