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WW2 Talks

24 Oct 2013

This week Y5 have been incredibly lucky.
Four special people, who remember WW2, volunteered to talk to us
about their experiences and memories of the war
either as evacuees or on active service.  
We learned so much more from our living historians than any book.  
We are so lucky and grateful for the experience.  
Thank you so much.
Year 5 children and staff.

Our World War 2 veteran, Mr Wilson, had amazing experiences,
travelling all over the world in various boats before
seeing active service in Europe and elsewhere.  
He was shot in a very painful place but survived to tell the tale
and we are very pleased about that!  
For bravery he was awarded the highest honour -
The Victoria Cross.  
Mightily well-deserved.

Growing up in rural Yorkshire was rather a different experience,
for Mr Watson.  His father stayed on the farm to grow crops
to feed the country during rationing.  
Italian POWs (Prisoners of War) worked on the farm
and became friends.

Peace or War?

Adults in city areas also had important jobs,
such as Air Raid Wardens who patrolled the streets
at night-time to check there were no lights showing.  
They wore metal helmets to protect them, as you can see.

Mrs Watson was very young when she,
like many other British children, was evacuated
to a safer part of the country.  
Although children were treated kindly by their foster parents,
they still missed home, especially pet rabbits!

Via Skype, we were able to ask
questions to Mr Soar (Ms Soar's father)
about his experiences.  
Mr Soar was scared when war was announced
because he remembered
his Uncle Jack who was gassed in WW1 and
lost the use of one of his lungs.  

When the government issued gas masks to everyone in England,
he remembered what his Uncle Jack said.  
He was evacuated twice:
First to Canterbury before war even started and,
when the city was in danger, to Wales.  
His foster family were kind to him.  
Their son was fighting in the war.
In Wales, Mr Soar enjoyed the mountains, joining the scouts,
singing in the choir, poetry and
learning how to pronounce words in the Welsh language.

(It means:Mary's Church in the hollow of the white hazel near the rapid whirlpool
and church of St. Tysilio with a red cave.)

No-one would miss the air-raids, though.
The sound of the air-raid siren was chilling, 
as were the sounds of the bombs falling on Highams Park.
Morter bombs caused terrible damage.

They were heavy!

Thank you for teaching us so much.
We could have listened to your memories all day.


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I loved both the talks and wanted to get down everything but in the end I just sat there and listened to it all! Well done Joseph for winning the coin, wish it were me. Ella
Ms Jane Blackborow - 06 Nov 2013 - 18:38
I loved listening to the talks as well. It was probably better to listen than to write and just enjoy other people's real-life experiences. I wonder if we can find some more coins ...? Ms Soar
Ms Heather Soar - 06 Nov 2013 - 20:11
I may bring the coin to one of our HISTORY lessons so everyone can have a look at this 1 penny......As i am writing this it is sitting right next to me!! I was SO suprised that it was me! Joseph
Mrs Karen Darnborough - 07 Nov 2013 - 19:45
Listening to Mr and Mrs Watson and Mr Wilson was great inspiration for our writing. Agnes
Mrs Jo Prosser - 17 Dec 2013 - 18:42
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