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PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2008 6:48 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2008 9:45 pm
Posts: 37
Location: Burnley
Barbara Hewitson's Story by Lancshomeguard

Contributed by Lancshomeguard
People in story: Barbara Hewitson and Famiy
Location of story: Ashford, Kent and Burnley and Worsthorne, Lancashire
Background to story: Civilian
Article ID: A4832642
Contributed on: 06 August 2005
This story has been submitted to the People’s War website by Anne Wareing of the Lancashire Home Guard on behalf of Barbara Hewitson and has been added to the site with her permission…

I was 3 when the war started. When I was 5 or 6 we lived in Ashford in Kent, but came north to Burnley in Lancashire to escape the bombing. My father originally came from Burnley and had met my mother whilst serving in a southern regiment before the war. He had been a regular soldier, but was invalided out of the army just after the war started.

We lived in Burnley for about a year before moving to Worsthorne, where I went to the village school and. I remember feeling different to the other children, because of my southern accent.

My mother came from a large family, she was one of thirteen children, her brothers went into the various services and luckily all came home safely at the end of the war.
Father worked in a factory in Worsthorne as well as being in the Home Guard.

I remember the rationing, going to the shops with coupons, and using powdered eggs, only occasionally would the shop get sweets and you had to look sharpish to be there first and get some. Then there was the blackout, dark curtains over the windows; you hadn’t to show a chink of light. I loved to read and used to read under the bedclothes by the light of a torch.

We had relatives living in America and sometimes they would send us a food parcel, I think they must have thought we were starving. It would have all sorts of things in it, but I remember that they sent a cake mix that you just added water too, I think it was called something like Devil’s Chocolate Mix and it made a chocolate cake.

On VE Day we had a big bonfire on the village green and following VJ Day we decorated the street up when a man called Jimmy Nutter came home after being in a Japanese prisoner of war camp, I was terribly shocked when I saw him, he looked just like a bag of bones, but I’m happy to say he ended up living to a ripe old age.

Shortly after the war ended we had a very bad winter, the snow was well above the dividing walls in the fields nearby and I can remember that some German prisoner’s of war were clearing the snow away, so some of them must have still been here.

Copyright Barbara Hewitson

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