WWII evacuees: Dulcie's escape to Glasgow


Compared to some of the other WWII evacuees from Guernsey, Dulcie Couch was one of the luckier ones.

Unlike most children, the 12-year-old left with her mother and sister in 1940, when the shadow of German occupation was looming over the island.

She said the farewells were poignant: "There were mums and dads in the doorways and they were waving.

"And someone started singing Wish Me Luck As You Wave Me Goodbye. That was hard."

Despite escaping the island to find sanctuary, the trio faced danger even during their journey north when they became caught up in an air raid at Weymouth.

Image caption,
Dulcie Couch left Glasgow when she was 16

"We were taken out and bundled along to the station and put on the train," she said.

"We didn't really sleep, there was a lot of crying in the compartment so it was a horrendous journey."

Even in Glasgow's Shawlands area, where Dulcie, her mother and sister lived for five years, there was no escape from the bombs.

"In the 1941 raid we were in the kitchen and we heard a bomb coming down and we were terrified about where it would land.

"It landed further out the back, and a couple of flats were hit. We were terrified."

Dulcie recalls that a cinema and a ballroom were located across from the family's tenement.

"My mother would only allow me to dancing once a week when I was 15 and 16," she said.

"So I'd ask her if I could go to the pictures then slip through the cinema's tearoom into the ballroom. I was crafty," she laughs.

Escape to Glasgow will be broadcast on BBC1 Scotland on Sunday 14 November at 2225 GMT, or you can watch it for one week after that on the BBC iPlayer

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