Friday, February 26, 2010

An acquisition by the Imperial War Museum

Ron has donated his war diary to the Imperial War Museum (IWM) in London. This will now be a primary source of value for future reasearchers. This letter from Dr Simon Robbins, the IWM archivist, says it all:

It also scotches the circulating rumours that Ron was bribed to 'donate' his diary by the gift of a Jeep, despite a recent IWM photo to the contrary

Personally I'm keeping an open mind.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Evacuation away from home

A young evacuee’s suitcase and clothes
(Photograph taken at the I.W.M. WW2 Touring Exhibition
Tullie House Museum, Carlisle, Cumbria, Summer 2005)

The items that can be seen in or next to the suitcase are what a young lad of perhaps 9 or 10 years old may have taken. Girls who were evacuated would probably take some personal items, such as dolls, teddy bears etc, as well as clothes and books.

Evacuation in Wartime Britain

Corkickle Railway Station, Whitehaven, Cumbria
During WW2 many evacuees left or arrived via railway platforms
Nowadays primary schools re-enact wartime evacuations from this station.
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Sunday, February 14, 2010

A Happy Interlude in Cairo, Egypt, 1942

Troopers Pat O'Brien (left) and Martin Quin (right)
Showing off their newly-acquired tatoos in Cairo, Egypt, 18 November 1942

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Saturday, February 13, 2010

A Second World War obituary

Former Railwayman and Wigan Magistrate Daniel Ritson
Daniel passed away in July 1943 after several years of ill-health
Due to long-term ill health, Daniel had been unable to take much part in the WW2 war effort. During and shortly after WW1 Daniel had represented the railway employees in negotiations with the Coalition Government
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Standard Bearer for the Normandy Veterans

West Cumbrian Normandy Veteran Mr Roy Rogers
Roy was the Standard bearer for the West Cumbria Branch until 2002
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Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Saving two civilans in Antwerp, Belgium

Normandy Veteran Louis Williams, R.A.S.C.
Louis landed in Normandy Beaches on 8 June 1944 (D+2)
Later in the war, Louis saved two Belgian civilians in Antwerp.
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Friday, February 05, 2010

Normandy Veterans Plaque

Normandy Veterans Association (West Cumbria No 51 Branch) Plaque
This was the last plaque donated by the NVA West Cumbria Branch

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Landed on the afternoon of D-Day, 6 June 1944

Normandy Veteran Albert Madine, Seaforth Highlanders.During WW2 Albert was involved in the Normandy LandingsHis unit landed on ‘Sword Beach’, Calvados, France on D-Day 6 June 1944
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Thursday, February 04, 2010

Singing in the rain!

Billy and Margaret Pye following an Armistice Day Memorial Service
Still smiling and 'singing in the rain' despite the weather
Billy is a veteran of the Normandy campaign
He landed at 'Onaha Beach' on 8 June 1944 (D+2)
Billy Pye and his wife Margaret like singing and dancing, particularly the music of the American musicals of the 1940s and 1950s. So it seemed rather approporaite that Billy and Margaret can shrug off the rainy skies and keep smiling, as one had to do all the time during the war years.
For most of WW2 Billy worked with the Americans and landed on 'Omaha Beach' in Normandy on 8 June 1944. While in France, Billy was lucky enough to see the Glen Mille Orchestra in Paris, although this was shortly after Glen Miller disappeared duruing a flight across the English Channel.
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Monday, February 01, 2010

Landed with the Yanks at Omaha Beach

Mr and Mrs Harry Warren at a recent get-together of wartime veterans.
They met during WW2 when both served as Corporals in the RAF
Mrs Warren was late promoted to Sergeant with the WAAF
Meanwhile, Corporal Harry Warren went over to Normandy with the Yanks
He landed at Omaha Beach, working on Radar sites
(Photograph: J. Ritson)

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'Out of the night': D-Day 6 June 1944

Private John Slater, 12th Parachute Regiment, WW2.
During the night of 5 / 6 June 1944 John parachuted into Normandy
John had previously been at Dunkirk in the late spring of 1940.
In June 1944 John appeared ‘out of the night’ and returned to France
The long years of waiting were over …

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