Posts Tagged ‘evacuee’

Bobby McGregor

July 14, 2016

Bobby was an Easterton evacuee during World War Two and he was a recent visitor to Market Lavington Museum. It isn’t the first time he had returned to the area. In fact he had already had a mention on this blog when we published a piece from an Easterton Echo of October 1975 which was written by Gladys Windo and said:

Evacuees

During the ‘last year several families of evacuees have revisited Easterton. They were billeted here during the Second World War. Sidney Hamshere returned with his wife and family from Australia. He was staying with Mr & Mrs Hussey senior during the war. He called on Bill Hussey and myself and was very disappointed to see the old school gone.

Bill Emery who was billeted at the vicarage called with his wife & family from Germany.

Tony Emery and his wife and family paid a visit. Billeted with Mr & Mrs Davies, he now lives at Taunton.

Mr “Bobby” & Malcolm McGregor also returned. They called on Mrs Topp as they were billeted with Miss Etherington.

They all remembered the great competition to blow the church organ – for one shilling per week. All had happy memories of Easterton and hope to pay a return visit sometime.

Shirley & Mavis Allsop, billeted with Mrs Little at Cedar Farm, have again visited us.

Many in the village remember going to school with these evacuees.

Miss Windo.

For this visit, Bobby came alone and brought a photo of him outside his billet.

Bobby McGregor at Hill View in Easterton

Bobby McGregor at Hill View in Easterton

Bobby was an East end of London lad and he and his brother found a home with Miss Etherington. Frances Violet Etherington lived at Hill View on Kings Road. She had been born in 1874 in Hertfordshire and had, like many another member of her family joined the teaching profession. She became head at Easterton School and we think she retired when Miss Windo came in 1934. So by the time of the blitz, in 1940, Miss Etherington would have been about 66.

Bobby was a youngster and his memories are limited. He thinks he came three times, returning home to London after the blitz but coming back to Easterton when doodlebug and V2 raids started.

One strange little quirk was that Bobby, aged 5, was baptised at Easterton on 18th January 1942.

Bobby attended Easterton School and remembers lardy cakes, which he thought delicious, made by an Easterton baker. He recalls playing in the stream near the pump until that was banned following the death of Ronald Hussey. Some blamed his illness and death on playing in the stream.

Bobby is trying to piece together his time in Easterton and would like to know more about Miss Etherington. She died in 1962 but there will be plenty of people who remember her.

Do get in touch if you can tell us anything and we’ll pass information on to Bobby who now lives in Aberdeen.

Easterton Evacuees

October 13, 2013

We were recently given a large number of Easterton Echoes – the newspaper for Easterton but our donor had not been a collector in the early days. However, Easterton Parish Council have loaned us their archive and good old Jim is working through the process of copying them.

We can now say that the very first issue was the May 1975 issue but here we are going to look at an article from the October 1975 issue – to give a flavour from 38 years ago this month.

Let’s see the efforts of Sheila Judge and her typewriter and there is a corrected transcript below.

Easterton Echo Issue 5 from October 1975

Easterton Echo Issue 5 from October 1975

Now here’s the transcript.

Evacuees

During the ‘last year several families of evacuees have revisited Easterton. They were billeted here during the Second World War.
Sidney Hamshere returned with his wife and family from Australia. He was staying with Mr & Mrs Hussey senior during the war. He called on Bill Hussey and myself and was very disappointed to see the old school gone.

Bill Emery who was billeted at the vicarage called with his wife & family from Germany.

Tony Emery and his wife and family paid a visit. Billeted with Mr & Mrs Davies, he now lives at Taunton.

Mr “Bobby” & Malcolm McGregor also returned. They called on Mrs Topp as they were billeted with Miss Etherington.

They all remembered the great competition to blow the church organ – for one shilling per week. All had happy memories of Easterton and hope to pay a return visit sometime.

Shirley & Mavis Allsop, billeted with Mrs Little at Cedar Farm, have again visited us.

Many in the village remember going to school with these evacuees.

Miss Windo.

How interesting to find information from the 1940s in this issue of ‘The Echo’ Our thanks to Miss Windo for gathering the information, and the Easterton parish Council for storing the record.

And of course, we’d love to hear from any of the people mentioned or, perhaps, their descendants.

Red Riding Hood – cast photo.

August 25, 2012

We saw a programme for a wartime production of Red Riding Hood back in May (Click here). Today we look at a cast photograph.

Cast of Red Riding Hood performed at Market Lavington Parish Room in January 1943

Here we have a wonderful example of the route items can take to reach Market Lavington Museum. A dozen years ago, a lady called Marjorie Ratuszniak brought the photo to the museum. Marjorie had been an evacuee in the village during World War II, possibly with her sister, Joyce. Of course, Marjorie was a girl then and had her maiden name of Marjorie Manning, The Mannings were, we think, from London’s East End. Certainly Marjorie was born in the Stepney district and when she married, in the 1950s, it was in the West Ham district. Market Lavington life must have seemed quiet after London, but entertainment was possible – you could take part in a village pantomime or play. And so she did. Marjorie is one of the chorus girls in the photo. This photo had a 60 year sojourn in London, before returning home to Market Lavington.

And now the people in the photo, as named by Marjorie.

Front row (Children): Clive Baker, Bernard Perrett, 2 Sainsbury boys, Graham Baker, Michael Bevan, Mavis Boulton (now Trimwell).

Front middle row: Pat Hobbs, Mr Pike (? Hobbs), Mr Shepherd.

Back row: Winnie Bevan, Vera Baker, Daphne Cooper, Eileen Perrett, Joyce Trumble, Arthur Goldlaw (soldier), Mrs King, Howard May (soldier), Mr Hobbs, Mr Mabbett, Mr Sainsbury, Mr Perrett, Pam Wells, Jean Potter . . . Marjorie Manning.

We’d love to hear from any of the cast, and particularly Marjorie.

An Evacuee Remembers

January 25, 2011

Here we present extracts from the memories of  Fred, Albert, Tom, Dora and Poppy Emms. They were world war 2 evacuees from London. They spent a little while on a farm near Chippenham, then some time in Devizes and then…

… the Billeting Officer offered our Mum and Aunt Bella two joint cottages behind the fire station in the market place Market Lavington. The cottages were very old, had no plumbing and we had an old pump outside the door. It was shared by all the neighbours it was not nice for drinking. We got our water from Broadwell and that was very nice. For the toilet we had to walk about seven hundred yards through the gardens to some tin sheds with buckets that you had to empty every week but we did have the Daily Mirror for toilet paper. The toilets were by Mr James’ field. A brick wall kept us apart.

At the cottage we did have electricity but no kitchen. I do not remember all the names of our neighbours. The ones I do remember were Mr and Mrs Owen with son Basil and daughter Poppy, Mr and Mrs Jackson and family, Mrs Robbins and son Chuffy, Mr and Billy Cooper and Mrs Ingrams. I know there were a lot more but I have forgotten the names.

Once we settled down we made lots of friends such as Mr and Mrs Chapman, Aubry, Tony, Roy, and Gran, Mrs Cooper, the Jenks, the Orams, the Wells, and the Burt families.

Bella Marshall and her son Jimmy - World War II evacuees at Market Lavington

This is the Aunt Bella referred to – Bella Marshall and her son Jimmy who were evacuated to Market Lavington.

Another extract from these memories reads…

… I know we were too young to go in pubs, but our mums did. They used the Volunteer. The landlady was, I believe, Mrs Trotter. It was there that Bobby Mapp and Howard May, two soldiers from the army barracks, entertained. Howard played the accordion, and Bobby sang.

Bobby Mapp and the accordion player entertained in Market Lavington.

This photo was given to Eliza, Mrs Emms, by Bob Mapp on 25th September 1941. Our museum information differs from these memories for we have it that  Bobby Mapp is on the left and possibly Arthur Golbur with the piano accordion. Maybe a reader can put us straight on that.

An evacuee’s family seek help

March 5, 2010

Market Lavington Museum regularly receive (or offer) help tracing family. In this case the family was a temporary one which may not actually have lived in Market Lavington.

The evacuee, who came to the Lavington area, probably in 1939, was Bernard Cleary who was aged about nine at that time.

Sadly, Bernard died a couple of years ago and it is his younger brother seeking information. The brother has hazy memories of a visit and a photograph was taken on the day of the visit. Bernard is the lad sitting on the right in the photo. His parents and little brother stand by the big stone. The other lad is thought to be a Lavington local.

The Cleary family at the Robber's Stone - 1939/40

The younger Mr Cleary writes:

This photograph of our family plus a local  (Lavington based) friend of my brother’s, was taken early in the war.  I know it was wartime because our journey started with us using the underground in London (a first time for me).  If you can picture this happening when London was completely blacked out you will understand my surprise when we entered the station and I saw for the first time what seemed to be a street with lights. It was amazing. Our trip to visit Bernard in his new home had to have taken place before the Blitz started on London and during the first year of the war, when little happened, in what is referred to as the Phoney War.

I remember a small bridge over a stream or river, the river being about fifteen feet wide. Scottish soldiers playing bagpipes are walking towards the bridge from the open fields behind (surely Salisbury Plain). I have a memory of  being in the garden of the people Bernard was being billeted with, (a substantial garden loaded with tall vegetables – as they appeared to me)  The people he stayed with were said to be very kind. I think the man of the house was there, so I presume he was in a reserved occupation or too old to go off fighting.

At the museum, we are fairly sure that the photograph is taken at the Robber’s Stone, on Salisbury Plain above West Lavington but we cannot place a stream about 15 feet wide with certainty. Can you help? Do you recall a lad called Bernard Cleary. Do you recognise the lad sitting on the stone on the left? If so, do leave a message or contact the curator using the link below.

Contact the curator