Banburyshire Family History

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Anne Paling

I remember some incidents from WW2 but we had moved to Derbyshire by then. However, my father, when he didn't have any petrol from his ration (he was in a reserved occupation, on call for a factory) used to take me on the cross bar of his push bike over 30 miles back to Nuneaton to see relatives or to do business. Whilst returning from one of these trips we stopped on top of a hill to draw breath and I can just remember the glow from the bombing of Coventry in the night sky.

My father had a motor-bike for a time as he thought it used less petrol but my mum was never very happy about it - he used to take us children on the pillion - and it went.

My grandfather ROBINSON was bombed out of his Nuneaton factory twice, I think, but just found somewhere else and continued, my mum said, the next day ? They made interlock cotton underwear at Abbey Hosiery Mills.

My father kept geese and hens so we were never short of eggs of all sizes! I still have a scar on my knee where the gander took exception to me being on his territory and chased me over a barbed wire fence!! My father used to make horseradish sauce when we could get meat wearing a gas mask - I had a "Mickey Mouse" gas mask but can never recall wearing it as we were deep in rural Derbyshire. My father also used to acquire second hand toys and do them up for presents so we all had some marvellous gifts at Christmas and Birthdays - none were available in shops.

My mother had more items than most women, as she was in the country, to eke the cooking out but my grandfather who lived with us never got the hang of rationing. He would come in from the station where he had returned to work in his 60s and just scoff anything that was in the kitchen even though mum had saved all the sugar or meat for a week. It's a wonder she didn't strangle him there and then!!!

My grandparents left Lutterworth Road, Nuneaton, in 1939/40 for Llandudno where we had relatives to escape the bombing but hadn't realised that North Wales was on the flight path into Liverpool Docks so soon joined us nr Ashbourne. God knows how they got through the First World War as they never got the hang of WW2!

I can remember sweets coming off ration - by this time (in the early 50s?) - we were in Cornwall - before that we used to buy lemonade powder with our pennies, stick our fingers in and stain then bright yellow.

I think, as a family, we were very lucky as most were in reserved occupations, producing clothing and parachutes. No-one that I recall was killed that I knew in WW2. The nearest the war came to us was a cracked window pane in a kitchen window left from a stray bomb explosion - not sure if it was from us or them.

Written by Anne Paling