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Author Topic: Evacuation WW2  (Read 26593 times)

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Offline numanfan

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #14 on: June 22, 2009, 12:15:54 »
Well done Kyn ^^^

Surprising how many CO-OP's there were in the 'old days' :o
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Offline kyn

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #13 on: June 22, 2009, 11:59:42 »
Looks like its looking up Balmoral Road to me in the direction of the bus depot.  Its the only road with that style houses nearby.

http://www.bing.com/maps/default.aspx?v=2&FORM=LMLTCP&cp=sjxv0zh1c5m0&style=b&lvl=2&tilt=-90&dir=0&alt=-1000&phx=0&phy=0&phscl=1&scene=24347954&encType=1

Offline numanfan

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #12 on: June 22, 2009, 11:22:15 »
Hi Jayzi,

images 3 & 4 are  the same photograph, I just couldn't scan both pages together. Therefore there's no censorship as image 3 clearly shows the Gillingham branch of the CO-OPERATIVE SOCIETY LTD.
I've always presumed the photo was taken in the High St, leading to the station but now I've studied it carefully I'm confused.
In my 1937 Kellys directory, the CO-OP is on the corner of King Street


 That means the station is along the far end of the road, in the distance. But houses appear to be there ( or w
as the station layout different then?).
Also, the queues of people appear to be moving towards the camera, away from the station - or was the sight of a photographer enough to make everyone turn & face him?
And finally, if that is the corner of King Street, why is the car park sign on the post pointing where it is? There's no break in the shops opposite until you reach the station.

Hopefully someone local can explain exactly where the photograph was taken?
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Jayzi.

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #11 on: June 21, 2009, 23:51:53 »
Hi all.

Thanks for posting some photo's newmanfan. On the last one, 2 things interesting to me. Can we identify the street?, and secondly do i see a bit of censorship going on ? In looking 1/3 down in the middle of photo we see a rectanglar white block. Is this just because of some photographic limitation or a piece of deliberate blanking out of Gillingham as a place name?

Jayzi.    

Jayzi.

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #10 on: June 17, 2009, 12:06:43 »
Hi all.

Cant remember the name of the local history book/s, it was one of them with minimal text buts lots of pictures and freely availiable from local libraries. In it was several pictures of evacuees. One taken on the level crossing at Gillingham, another with kids waiting on Chatham train station. Also if my memory is holding up one of evacuees in Gillingham high street.

Jayzi.

Offline WildWeasel

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2009, 21:12:01 »
Malc
Thanks for posting the story.... Brought a tear to my eye I dont mind admitting....
My father was born in 1935 in Gillingham and was evacuated to Wales.....Not 100 % sure of the facts but I reckon it was early days during the "Phoney War" when we really didnt have a clue about what was likely to happen
I know he was brought back by my Grandmother as he and his brothers where not treated very well... This is a common theme...
He was definatley back in Gillingham in 1944 as he witnessed the B26 crash in lower Gillingham on D-Day 6 June 1944 ( I have researched this and posted some details )

This is the living history that
I love...Thanks to the Internet it will not fall by the wayside....

Great post mate !!!

WW
If it's too hard I can't do it !

AnnieM

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2009, 20:45:56 »
Hi Malcolm

Thank you so much for sharing this story - my son was absolutely fascinated and would love to use part of this for his school project.  It has made him stop and think about how easy his life is in comparison.

Thank you again for your help

Annie & Kai

Offline kyn

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2009, 09:15:11 »
Thanks for sharing this, it really does make it all seem real, the children must have been so scared!

Monkton Malc

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2009, 00:09:05 »
Found a picture of Baswich House before it was demolished this year due to it being unsafe. The reason it was deemed unsafe apparently was someone tripped over a box and hurt their back. HSE gone mad...


Monkton Malc

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2009, 23:56:36 »
Continued..

It was the 2nd of June 1940, and I shall always remember the scenes at Ramsgate railway station. There were hundreds of children with their labels, gas masks and small hand luggage gathering in a large ?crocodile? as parents were waving their goodbyes. We all went down the far steps at the station, and coming from the opposite direction were hundreds of injured soldiers and sailors who had been rescued from Dunkirk. We were all agog watching these poor men arriving.

The journey to Staffordshire is a bit of a blur, but I remember getting off the train and being taken to a large hall where we were all medically examined. From there we were taken by coach to Newborough, near Burton on Trent.
Our group of children from St Lawrence School waited with our headmistress, Miss Huggard, in the local school hall, waiting to be picked by local families. I had been told by my mother that I must look after my brother Norman and we were not to be separated. Because of this we seemed to be the last ones picked, but at least we were still together!

Our foster parents had a four year old son and while we were there, another baby was born. I was so thrilled when I was allowed to help look after the new baby. We stayed in Newborough for two and a half years and finally left when I passed the scholarship to go to Clarendon House School which had been evacuated to Stafford.
I returned home to Ramsgate that summer for a holiday with my parents before joining my new school in Stafford. Norman also went home. He stayed with mum and attended St Georges School which had reopened for the evacuees that had returned home.

After the summer holiday I met a friend from my infant days and we travelled to Stafford together, to be delivered to our foster parents - an elderly couple who greeted us with "We don't really want you, but we need the money!" which did nothing to put us at our ease. However, they gave us a bed and fed us, but apart from that there were no real home comforts. We were not allowed to stay indoors once we were up, we had to go out no matter what the weather was! On Sundays we would walk the two miles to church to attend two separate services, even in winter.
Luckily, during our stay in Stafford we were allowed home for school holidays. We didn?t tell our parents or teachers about our awful billet in case our foster parents made life worse for us! I have to say though, that some of our friends had wonderful foster parents.

We shared the local grammar school and had the use of Baswich House on certain days of the week. It was a lovely old building set in grounds with beautiful beech trees. I cannot remember the exact date that Clarendon House School returned to Ramsgate, bet we were in Stafford for more than two years.
At some time during our evacuation my father, who was in the home guard, was sent for a while to Staffordshire, to supervise the making of charcoal by Italian prisoners of war. My mother went to friends in London for a year or so, working in the Lucas battery factory, before returning to Ramsgate where she kept the vegetable garden going. She also used to make clothes to send to us.
After the war the family was all back together and life in Ramsgate gradually returned to normal. We resumed our walks along the West Cliff to the bandstand, but it was a long time before the barbed wire was removed from the beaches.



I wrote this up for her about 10 years ago and it appears in the book "To a safer place" by Peter Hayward.


I cannot imagine what it must have been like for a nine year old to be shipped off like that with a younger brother, not knowing if anything was going to be there when returning home.

Kids today have got it far too easy.


Malcolm.

Monkton Malc

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2009, 23:11:36 »
Here is the start of some of my mothers' memories..

Before the war we used to go for afternoon walks, usually along the West Cliff from St Lawrence and then home for tea, followed by evensong at St Lawrence church. I also remember listening to the band at the West Cliff bandstand.
My parents, Charles and Edith Laker (now deceased) were very poor and worked hard to keep us well and happy. Mother did ?letting? in the summer to help pay the bills and dad grew all his own vegetables. We had an air raid shelter in the garden and dad grew nasturtiums over it. Luckily we only had to use it for a few nights. We never went away for holidays, so when it came to the evacuation, it all seemed like a big adventure to us, without realising the seriousness of it all.

AnnieM

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2009, 21:58:20 »
Thank you Malcolm for your reply - I would love read your mum's memories and sure my son will find these very helpful.  If you are able to find your notes would you have any objection to my son using them in his project?

Annie

Monkton Malc

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Re: Evacuation WW2
« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2009, 20:51:31 »
My mum was evacuated from Ramsgate (I know it's not the area that you asked for) and a while ago I wrote some of her memories that were published in the book "Children into exile".

Right this moment I can't find what computer I wrote them  on (5 to check here and the kids are chatting to their friends), so if I can't find them, I will type it out again when I find the notes that I took.

I also had a scanned copy of the picture of all the St Lawrence children taken when they were in Stafford. My grandfather kept this picture with him throughout the war while he was serving in the home guard. He even managed to get transferred to within 30 miles of where my mother and her brother were. He would cycle to see them whenever he could. He was charcoal burning for the war effort.


Malcolm.

AnnieM

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Evacuation WW2
« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2009, 16:42:27 »
Hi all

My young son (he's 10) is doing a project at school on WW2 and is currently interested in children being evacuated from the Medway Towns.  He would like some stories but his grandparents are unable to help.  My mum didn't live in the Medway Towns at the time and Dad was not evacuated.

Has anyone got any stories they would be willing to share with him which he could use for his project? 

Many thanks in advance

Annie

 

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