Living on borrowed time

I feel lucky….

I should not still be here….

In the Spring of 1941 when I was very small, our house, at 58 Northbrook Road, Wallasey was bombed and we were left homeless.

Fortunately my Dad was a good DIY man (even before DIY had been invented) and he had shored up the space under the stairs with planks of wood in anticipation of a visit from Mr Hitler or some of his emissaries. At that time Dad was working for the Gas Board and therefore in a reserved occupation, so instead of going off to war as he really wanted to, he did his work and then was in the Home Guard in his spare time.

When the bombs dropped, he had just returned to the house. I was in my cot under the stairs and he and Mum crowded into the confined space, mainly to protect me.

The story of what happened next was told and retold to us children over the years… how we survived, how most of our neighbours were out in the street, how Dad went next door to dig out Mrs Shone and her little daughter, Sandra Shone, and how they managed to walk to Hillcroft Road to Nana & Pop’s home and safety.

It was only when my Dad wrote one of his ‘Epic Poems’ (as was his wont) not long before Mum died in 1997, that I realised that the people in the street had not been watching what was going on around them, they were in fact covered by sheets!

Suddenly, and rather late in life, the full realisation hit me of how very lucky we had been.

They never did rebuild our terrace of houses. They incorporated the land into the playground of the adjacent Somerville School after the war.
My son has published the ‘Epic poem’ on his website.

You are welcome to go there if you wish, then you’ll know why I feel lucky

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7 thoughts on “Living on borrowed time

  1. Lesley

    We moved from Colwyn Bay, staying overnight in Mychynlleth. In those days, No 33 had the most awful bright yellow front door. After two days of travelling and car sickness (due probably to parental smoking in the car) it was the final straw!….

    Reply
  2. Lesley

    I have only just realised that the school that my father attended…Somerville…is the same one that now has the site of our bombed out home incorporated in its playground…

    Reply

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