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15 October 2014
WW2 - People's War

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My Memories of the 2nd World War from 1940

by joe90m

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Contributed by 
People in story: 
Joe Martlew my mam and dad Mary and George Martlew
Location of story: 
Ince in Makerfield near Wigan Lancs
Background to story: 
Article ID: 
Contributed on: 
10 July 2005

Iwas born in Ince near Wigan Lancashire on 27 01 1940. My first truly vivid recollection as a three year old was of Italian POW being brought to Spring Branch railway sidings so they could put letters and parcels in mail bags . These would then be sent to our forces around the world. Of course I knew nothing of this at that time, I only knew that the Italians liked me and called me GUISEPPE iTALIAN FOR JOSEPH!!!They would take me to thier proson bus and give me hunks of bread and cheese or whatever else they had to share. I love those men perhaps because they made a fuss of a little three year old foreign boy.
My next recllection is of the Home Guard,again I would be about three years old, I remember them drilling and training in our street and a man who lived in our street that all the kids called Father Roberts no he wasn,t a clergy man, and he made me a wooden rifle so that I could march up and down the street with the home guard. My dad George Martlew worked on the Railway as a first class fireman shovelling the coal in to the firebox Sadly he died forty years ago.
My mam Mary Martlew worked in a munitions factory in a place near Chorley Lancs.caleed EUXTON pronounced xton. She was a munitions inspector who had to ensure that all the shells on her production line were ready and safe to transport. One night in September 1941 one of the shells exploded and she lost part of her right hand.My mam died in 1987 the year my youngest brother Eric was elected MP for Carlisle.
I hope my little story has been of interest.

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