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tonydw

Liverpool during the war

The early 40’s, the world was at war fighting the armies of the despotic evil dictator Adolf Hitler.
Fathers, mothers, aunts, uncles, brothers and sisters were doing their bit for the war-effort.
Obviously most men were away fighting the war. The women had taken over the jobs the men used to do; many working in ammunition factories making the weapons, bombs and bullets.

Everyone was issued with a gas mask. The Germans had used gas on the Western Front during the First World War and it was feared they would use it again.
Older men became air-raid wardens and Fire Watches.
The Wardens made sure no lights were visible during the Black-Out; which was throughout the war.
They also wore helmets, carried a gas-mask and wooden gas rattles (to be used to warn of gas attacks). Ironically many of these rattles were used, after the war, to cheer on local football teams.

Everyone had to carry their gas-mask whenever outside, even mothers with infants had to carry the huge baby masks … I say huge because the baby had to fit inside  and the mother would pump filtered air using an attached bellows.

Liverpool was a strategic port where convoys of ships sailed in/out daily, bringing munitions and essential food for the beleaguered nation.
The worst part of the Second World War was the beginning. It was fear of the unknown.
Liverpool was blitzed from the start. The Dock-area was the primary target but May 1941 was the most injurious of all; it was devastating with more than 4,000 deaths.

The fires blazed on both sides of the Mersey and the city reeked of cordite, fire, smoke and fear; it was hell we should never forget.
Totalitarianism/Fascism should never be allowed to flourish; be aware!

Those at home did their best to keep the home fires burning, most were stout hearted stoic individuals who got on with their lives as best they could.
However there were opportunists, who’s only interest was to line their own pockets, they were known as ‘Spivs’. I recall a team of Spivs came up from London just after the war. They and put wooden cigarette machines in many homes …… A Big Mistake! Scouses are street smart.

Just about everything including food was in short supply and rationing was introduced with everyone, including babes and children issued a ration book.
Luxuries such as ladies cosmetics’ were rarities but somehow the girls managed, they used leg-tan with a seam drawn down the back of the leg with an eyebrow pencil in the place of stockings; without leg-tan it was heavy brown Lyle-stockings.

Wartime girls were good improvisers, make-up was called ‘Fake’ so it was obviously not the real thing.
I think that’s why the Yanks became so popular when they entered the war (1942). They had plenty of money and access to luxuries through their canteens (the PX).

Even when I started at sea in 1950 you could win favour with the girls if you brought them nylons from the US, or Gordon Moore’s toothpaste; it didn’t whiten your teeth it just turned the gums bright red to make the teeth look white.

We lived in Tunnel Road, Liverpool 7 so we had lots of horses and carts trundling backwards and forwards from the LMS Goods Yards at Edge Hill to the docks.
We street Arabs robbed em blind, one kid would stay up front talking to the driver, who usually walked alongside his horse, while another kid would jump on the cart and rifle through the bags looking for goodies.

The war had ended the biggest depression the world had ever seen, so poverty was the rule rather than the exception. Courts still existed in the city.

A court was a narrow street off a street. The Court would have about four 3 roomed houses on either side. The 3 rooms included a cellar and each room housed a family.
Only one toilet and a street water pump serviced each Court.
In those days before the pill, the average family would consist of mother, father with up to 8 kids……. There was 9 children in our family, me and 8 sisters.
My Irish ancestors lived at #3 Court Sylvester Street. My first cousin went on to receive a Knighthood for his endeavor in the regeneration of Liverpool; I am extremely proud of him.

I recall if you looked up to Liverpool from the river you could see row upon row of 2up 2down terraced houses…. People were poor but they didn’t realize it, they were too busy getting on with life and raising the family. They were also very proud and could be seen most days donkey-stoning the front step or window sill.

The Irish heritage was obvious seeing the ‘shawlies’, those women who dressed in black with voluminous skirts, black blouses, hair in a bun, lace-up boots and lovely black shawls; hence the shawlies.
Humour was part life and thrived in Liverpool; people were funny even when serious… Me mam used to shout,
“Get off that wall or I’ll break your neck!”
I always figured I was safer on the wall.
I often replay, “Hold your plumbs” on YouTube … One of the funniest shows on radio anywhere.
Barbie

Cool These are the tales of the city that need to be repeated over and over to the new generations t make sure our history never fades!

{Quote} We street Arabs robbed em blind, one kid would stay up front talking to the driver, who usually walked alongside his horse, while another kid would jump on the cart and rifle through the bags looking for goodies.

Street rats still pull those stunts Tony (I'm sure I am not allowed to call them what you did without being arrested)

This is the rear of the last remaining court in Liverpool.


The front of it remains, for now, there is talk of moving it to a museum (I think). This is the front as you will probably already know anyway.
http://www.c20society.org.uk/regi...s-kosher-butchers-shop-liverpool/
tonydw

Barbie wrote:
Cool These are the tales of the city that need to be repeated over and over to the new generations t make sure our history never fades!

{Quote} We street Arabs robbed em blind, one kid would stay up front talking to the driver, who usually walked alongside his horse, while another kid would jump on the cart and rifle through the bags looking for goodies.

Street rats still pull those stunts Tony (I'm sure I am not allowed to call them what you did without being arrested)

This is the rear of the last remaining court in Liverpool.


The front of it remains, for now, there is talk of moving it to a museum (I think). This is the front as you will probably already know anyway.
http://www.c20society.org.uk/regi...s-kosher-butchers-shop-liverpool/

Probably peered out of one of those windows while waiting to face the beak. Nothing serious, just not going to school.
Like many young lads, whose fathers were fighting a war, I was in need of care and protection - I was running wild. Finished up being sent to an Approved School, Saint Vincent, between Capel Curig and Bettis y Coed.
47 young lads, they are amongst the endearing memories of my young life.

The Camp is still there 3 mile from Bettis on the A5 ... If your dad or grandad ever mentions such a place put him in touch with me.

This site has great potential; at last I've found a new scousehouse .
Barbie

tonydw wrote:
Barbie wrote:
Cool These are the tales of the city that need to be repeated over and over to the new generations t make sure our history never fades!

{Quote} We street Arabs robbed em blind, one kid would stay up front talking to the driver, who usually walked alongside his horse, while another kid would jump on the cart and rifle through the bags looking for goodies.

Street rats still pull those stunts Tony (I'm sure I am not allowed to call them what you did without being arrested)

This is the rear of the last remaining court in Liverpool.


The front of it remains, for now, there is talk of moving it to a museum (I think). This is the front as you will probably already know anyway.
http://www.c20society.org.uk/regi...s-kosher-butchers-shop-liverpool/

Probably peered out of one of those windows while waiting to face the beak. Nothing serious, just not going to school.
Like many young lads, whose fathers were fighting a war, I was in need of care and protection - I was running wild. Finished up being sent to an Approved School, Saint Vincent, between Capel Curig and Bettis y Coed.
47 young lads, they are amongst the endearing memories of my young life.

The Camp is still there 3 mile from Bettis on the A5 ... If your dad or grandad ever mentions such a place put him in touch with me.

This site has great potential; at last I've found a new scousehouse .


Beak....it's been yonks since I heard that term! hahaha....I'm going to start using it again!  Laughing  Laughing  Laughing
Ahhhh....no wonder you ended up in Oz!!!  Razz  Wink Now, as for the reformed school, my dad would have known about it what with him being Welsh (born on the Isle of Anglesey) however, my dad has been gone 20 years. Had he still been here he would be 90 now. My grandad, as you mention, would have been like about 120+ if he still here... Laughing  Laughing
I've been through, and visited betws y coed many times.

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