Memories of an Evacuee - Ron Jones
Have just read Vic Hardy's memoirs about evacuation. I certainly didn't get anywhere near as plush?
As regards to my own evacuee saga, that does bring back memories! I was sent with a lad I met at the centre. Rodney. We were put on a bus/train to Altrincham near Manchester (I had never heard of it) and were then put in a hall there to be collected by volunteers (Foster Parents so called now days) I suppose! We were told by Mum's that we were to stay together.1st problem! Mothers coming in only wanted 1 child.That left us till last to go. I found out later that Mrs.Smith had called in to collect 1 child, but finding 2 of us had gone home again! On telling Mr.Smith that she hadn't got anyone, she was promptly sent back to collect both of us. That was the start of a great friendship between 2 families.
Ron Jones - Aged 11 years
But for these people who had accepted two London boys they were brilliant! They took us in along with 3 sons of their own. Bearing in mind that there was rationing etc! They were like a lot of people during the War, not well off but what they had was shared out. Everybody got on famously together and a cross word was never used. You can imagine what it must have been like! I dont think I could have done it.
There were 5 of us there, Percy, Clifford and Keith.The 3 sons and Rodney and I from London. All at school age, must of been a hell of a handful! Percy (Father) was an engineer at a company that made big Drilling Machines and Lathes for putting into factories around the country. He used to make models from scrap metal in his little shed/workshop of ships and planes and railway engines etc. The model of 1 battleship used to have all working parts.This was kept in our room and we spent hours playing with it. I remember him coming home one evening with a piece of metal which was taken into the shed and later that evening came out as the connecting-rod for one of the engines.
He was a great film fan,and after the war used to come South to fit the company machines in factories.Then he would stay with us, and we used to see all the new films together in London.
My family kept in touch after the war for many years, until both died. A Marvellous Family! But unfortunately Rodney was never heard from again, perhaps they moved from Tottenham.
All in all,good times through a bad period.