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Your Street In WW2 - How Did It Fare?


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#1 At Home Dad

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Posted 16 November 2008 - 01:15 PM

Hallo all

Following on from the South east London Blitz thread
I wondered what other members knew about the streets
where they now live in regard to WW2.

I've got some sad stuff from here in Leyton.
Three doors down got bombed by a Zep in WW1
and opposite was flattened in a later (Gotha?) attack.

The houses that were rebuilt opposite between the wars
got flattened by a V2 in September '44. At 7 in the morning.
Killed 40, I think? My flat, as well as the others in the row
(including the one originally hit in WW1!) were condemned
due to the damage (the V2 took out three streets, you can
see the damage via the newer properties that were built).

My flat was then, due to housing shortages, refurbished by
Italian POW's, who were being held, I believe, on Wanstead
Flats!

I discovered most of this initially from my neighbour who has lived her whole life in this street since being born here about 80 something years ago.

Her brother in law was a Petty Officer on the Jervis Bay..

Clark. Walter James William. Petty Officer. C/J 7626. HMS Jervis Bay. Royal Navy. Lost at sea. 5th November 1940. Age 46. Parents; Walter James & Alice Clark. Wife; Winifred May Clark, Leyton,Essex. Chatham Naval Memorial, Kent.


I grew up however, on the Isle of Dogs and my family goes
back generations to Poplar/Limehouse on both sides...

Needless to say, I was playing (in the mid '70's) on bomb-sites, the concrete AA gun emplacements protecting the docks as well as small concrete bunkers defending the Thames banks. I played in an abandoned factory which had a huge hole going through seven floors of concrete,
which I always imagined to be the path of a massive UXB!

The gun emplacements aren't there anymore, but where they were can be seen on google-earth. The concrete bunkers have gone, demolished to make way for flats in the '90s. The factory is now luxury flats, and the row of haunted cottages opposite the factory have gone too. These boarded up cottages were unchanged since they were blitzed.

Growing up on 'The Island' in the mid Sixties to early Eighties wasn't
the best place, but blimey, we had some great playgrounds!

My Grandad's medals were all lost there, Africa and Italian Star's being used as Sherriff badges by my uncles in cowboy hats and cap guns!


How did where you live now or grew up in get on in WW2?


Kind regards
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#2 Owen

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Posted 16 November 2008 - 01:19 PM

We've some local Blitz pics on here.
http://www.ww2talk.c...s-then-now.html

The road I grew up in wasn't built until 1943 & where I live now were fields until the early 1970s.
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#3 Drew5233

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Posted 16 November 2008 - 01:43 PM

As mentioned the South East London Blitz threads and my road was bombed in Catford, South East London. I lived at 94 Engleheart Road, SE6 2HW. If you Google Earth it you will see the changes in house styles. The small blocks of terraced houses were built after the war as were the flats opposite my house due to extensive bombing in the area.

All I know so far is that my house along with others were bombed and according to my Dad at the junction with Laleham Road there is s UXB. He says the Engineers decided to cover the bomb and fill the hole with concrete after several attempts to defuse the bomb. Apparently everytime they dug down to the fuse it kept sinking further and further into the mud and the depth of the hole made continued attempts dangerous. My Dad says he has a book on SE London during the blitz with our old house in it.

I will post more after the next visit to Kent.

Cheers
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#4 the_historian

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Posted 16 November 2008 - 02:11 PM

Our street wasn't built 'til the '50s, but the Luftwaffe dropped a landmine on Stirling in 1941. Stirling was a large garrison town into the Sixties, and what's now the Craigs Roundabout was a railway marshalling yard with a loco turntable, serving the main line north. There was also an RNAD at Bandeath which served Rosyth.
The bomb actually landed on the ground of King's Park FC (who became Stirling Albion postwar), destroying both it and the six houses alongside. One house belonged to a relative, and my father still has a photo taken the next morning showing Gran, the relative and a couple of teenagers standing in front of what was left of the house.
Interestingly, the old Victorian mill about 2 minutes' walk from my house was used as a dispersed factory for Besa mgs.
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#5 PsyWar.Org

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Posted 16 November 2008 - 05:07 PM

My grandparents' house was destroyed during the Blitz in Greenford, north-west London. My grandmother was staying with a relative that night, so thankfully no casualties.

If I have the location correct it was on what is now called Ruislip Road, at the junction of the Greenford Road. There's a Lloyds-TSB bank on the bombsite now.

My grandparents moved into a prefab after the war and were later rehoused in a council house in the 1960's - they preferred the prefab!

More distressing for Greenford residents was the destruction of the local pub called "The Load of Hay" - I believe there were a number of people killed.

This has just brought up an interesting question which I have never thought about before. Anyone know what, if any, compensation bomb victims received if they lost their home? I'm fairly sure my grandparents owned their house that was destroyed. As I said above, afterwards the Government housed them until their deaths which is great of course, but still they lost a valuable asset that couldn't be passed on to their children. Presumably regular house insurance, if they had it, would exclude acts of war?


There was a story about my secondary school which I don't know if it was true or not, that during the war it was used as a hospital until a Spitfire crashed into the roof.

That reminds me, many years ago I remember viewing at the National Archives weekly-compiled Home Office maps that noted the location of every property hit by a bomb or V-weapon.

Edited by PsyWar.Org, 16 November 2008 - 07:55 PM.
Rubbish spelling and grammar

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#6 Smudger Jnr

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Posted 16 November 2008 - 07:40 PM

Although the Luftwaffe had the English Electric factories and docks at Preston together with Leyland Motors clearly marked on their aerial maps, very few bombs were dropped in the Preston and Leyland areas.

Some bombs were unloaded by aircrews who failed to find their targets and caused damage and deaths in the South Ribble areas of Bamber Bridge and Lostock Hall.

The street that I grew up in after the war, Peel Hall street, Preston was uneffected, but our house cellar was reinforced with steel girders and posts and was an air aid shelter for several of our neighbours if the need arose.

Tom
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#7 Gerard

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Posted 17 November 2008 - 01:39 AM

Well the street I grew up in was unscathed but before you laugh at me please note that the houses 3 block away suffered bomb damage as stray luftwaffe bombs fell on Terenure during 1941.
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#8 Ron Goldstein

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Posted 17 November 2008 - 11:48 AM

I was born in Boreham Street, a small street, set in a cul-de-sac, in the East End of London.

A few years ago I was taken on a 'walk-about' by a BBC radio crew and interviewed on what it was like living there in the 1920's.

A large portion of the street had earlier been flattened by the Luftwaffe, including No.21 where I used to live, and the street name no longer exists.

Bang went my chance of having a blue plaque saying "Ron Goldstein used to live here"

:) :) :)
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:peepwalla:

 

I was "called-up", as a 19 year old, on the 1st of Oct 1942 and was one of 5 serving brothers, one of whom, Jack, was in RAF Bomber Command and was killed on March 16th 1945.

I served as a Driver/Op (Wireless Operator) with the 49th Light Anti Aircraft Rgt. (78 Div) from Apr 1943 to Dec 1944 (North Africa, Sicily, Italy, Egypt). The Regiment was disbanded in Dec 1944 and I was retrained (in Italy) by the Royal Armoured Corps.

 

Finally, I served as Loader/Op with the 4th Queen's Own Hussars (6th Armd.,78th & 56 Div) from Mar 1945 to Dec 1946 (Italy, Austria, Germany) finishing up as Tech Cpl. for "A" Sqdrn.  I was "De-mobbed" in Apr 1947

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#9 Niccar

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Posted 17 November 2008 - 03:09 PM


I grew up in Stepney E.1 in the East end of London in a street called Charles Street later to be renamed Aylward street which I believe one end of it is still there close to the City in one direction and the docks just across from the Commercial road so on
The Saturday afternoon of the first raid on London the planes had dropped mostly
Incendiary bombs as markers for the night raiders at that time I had just turned
Fifteen years of age and remember the scene at night as the air raid was going on
The sky was lit up by the fires that were raging all around and I was told in no uncertain terms to get my stupid a*** under cover by my father who incidentally
had a horrible job along with an older brother of mine but that’s another story
my mother was blasted out three times but in those days it was easy to get alternative
accommodation as lots of places were empty owing to people leaving for safer
places and houses being refurbished after being blasted. Later on when I had gone
into the army and came home on leave after being away four years I had to find
the road where my parents now lived as they had to contend with the V1s and
V2s and had been rehoused again

Regards niccar
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#10 Drew5233

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 08:58 PM

As mentioned the South East London Blitz threads and my road was bombed in Catford, South East London. I lived at 94 Engleheart Road, SE6 2HW. If you Google Earth it you will see the changes in house styles. The small blocks of terraced houses were built after the war as were the flats opposite my house due to extensive bombing in the area.

All I know so far is that my house along with others were bombed and according to my Dad at the junction with Laleham Road there is s UXB. He says the Engineers decided to cover the bomb and fill the hole with concrete after several attempts to defuse the bomb. Apparently everytime they dug down to the fuse it kept sinking further and further into the mud and the depth of the hole made continued attempts dangerous. My Dad says he has a book on SE London during the blitz with our old house in it.

I will post more after the next visit to Kent.

Cheers


Just to add some further information to the above:

Bennie was a member of Lewisham rescue squad, who searched all-night while bombing was in progress for buried victims at Engleheart Road, Catford, though suffering from burns and electric shock and twice overcome by gas fumes. Was himself removed to hospital.

Awarded the George Medal:

Bernard Joseph Bennie, Leader of A.R.P. Rescue Party, Lewisham.

Leader Bennie and his party were called out to an incident. Houses had been demolished by an H.E. bomb, and eight persons reported trapped. During the exploration of the ruins Leader Bennie received a severe electric shock, but got together his party and commenced rescue work. A heavy concentration of coal gas was 'present, -and soon Bennie was incapacitated. He was dragged out of the debris. After a short time the revived and again resumed his rescue work, until four persons were 'recovered alive. As it was known that four persons yet remained under the debris, the search continued, Bennie again being gassed and dragged out. During this time enemy planes were bombing and antiaircraft fire was intense. He showed a great spirit of determination and devotion to duty and was a fine example. A relief party ultimately recovered the remaining casualties.



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#11 Drew5233

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 08:59 PM

Awarded the George Medal:

Bernard Joseph Bennie, Leader of A.R.P. Rescue Party, Lewisham.

On the night of 6/7 September 1940 Leader Bennie and his party were called out to an incident. Houses on Engleheart Road in Catford S.E.6 had been demolished by an H.E. bomb, and eight persons reported trapped. During the exploration of the ruins, Leader Bennie received a severe electric shock, but got together his party and commenced rescue work. A heavy concentration of coal gas was present and soon Bennie was incapacitated. He was dragged out of the debris. After a short time he revived and again resumed his rescue work, until four persons were recovered alive. As it was known that four persons yet remained under the debris, the search continued, Bennie again being gassed and dragged out.

During this time enemy planes were bombing and anti-aircraft fire was intense. He showed a great spirit of determination and devotion to duty and was a fine example. A relief party ultimately recovered the remaining casualties.

Bernard Bennie served in the Camel Corps in Mesopotamia in the Great War 1914-1918.
He subsequently worked for Ford in Dagenham, UK, and was briefly involved in the setting-up of Ford Motor Co. in Geelong, Australia.


Posted Image
Lewisham's Heavy Lifting Squad. Their main depot was at Wearside Road (Still used by Lewisham Council when I left London) Ladywell. Their presence was required at 73 incidents in the first four days of the Blitz where they succeeded in rescuing 55 people alive from under collapsed buildings. Mr Bernard Bennie who won the George Medal described above is in the back row, third from the right.



The George Cross and George Medal wasn’t instituted by King George VI until 24th September 1940 so I’m guessing he was one of the first to be awarded the medal.
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#12 englandphil

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 09:20 PM

Posted Image

This photo shows the damaged caused by a Parachute mine to Windermere and Marsh Hall Pad in Widnes 1942 in which 4 members of one family where killed.

The bomb landed close to what was then Marsh Hall Farm, the birth place of Roy Chadwick the designer of the lancaster Bomber
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#13 James Daly

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 09:21 PM

My house is in Paulsgrove, a 'well-known's suburb of Portsmouth, far removed from the city centre and the dockyard. In 1939 my road was one of the few there (most of Paulsgrove was built as post-war overspill for people bombed out from the city), and it consisted of pretty much a few roads, some pig farms and a railway line running through it. But conversely its got a great view of Portsmouth Harbour and the Solent, so you would have had a grandstand view of dog-fights over the solent, the dockyard and city on fire, and then the solent bustling pre-D-Day.

I believe that a handful of bombs landed in the area, we have a bomb map at work so I will have a look and report back.
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#14 CL1

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 09:57 PM

within a few miles

37 killed
North Watford History Group — Sandringham Road Bomb (1944)



13 killed
Kenton Gardens V1 bomb, an eyewitness account.
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#15 Groundhugger

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 11:19 PM

My House Where I was born suffered landmine blast damage an end terrace with the wall bulging slightly outwards, Houses 4 doors away demolished , also a number of what we called ' debris' as children which were empty spaces where houses once stood , I remember seeing houses with no windows just tattered blackout blinds fluttering in the wind , this was in the early to middle fifties , with prefabs where the landmine struck , there was a tale of when the landmine was coming down a police sargent ran towards it thinking it was a parachutist , and all they found was a brass tunic button , an urban myth perhaps , and as the tale goes he was a **** as well !
The houses were only about 2 miles from Manchester Docks and I presume the Mine was meant for there ! I never could figure out this Landmine business ! I'm not too sure how many were killed in the 'Blitz' but mass burials were arranged ,
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#16 marcus69x

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Posted 27 April 2010 - 07:20 AM

Does anyone know of a site where I can type in my home town and it will tell you where bombs fell during the war? Sure I've seen something similar before.

Been having a google but it's just bringing up BBC peoples war.
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#17 sapper

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Posted 27 April 2010 - 11:28 AM

I spent my time in the Home Guard in Southampton during the blitz. The Bombers arrive through the short Summer night (night after night without let up) just after dark, and departed just before dawn. They did terrible damage in Southampton.

I spent some time helping rescue folk, and looking for unexploded bombs, and Land mines caught in the trees. down the railway alongside the docks.

Northam went up in flames. A huge red glow in the night sky, so bright you could read a paper.

My Sisters back at home, in Swanage, had a burst of cannon shells explode in their bedroom. The little town got more than its fair share for its size. It seems that the bombers would unload anything left over, before crossing the channel
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#18 CL1

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Posted 29 April 2010 - 09:27 PM

Does anyone know of a site where I can type in my home town and it will tell you where bombs fell during the war? Sure I've seen something similar before.

Been having a google but it's just bringing up BBC peoples war.


Hello Marcus
Possibly held in local towns archives
examples here
Google Image Result for http://www.culture24.org.uk/asset_arena/2/64/16462/v0_master.jpg
Google Image Result for http://www.locallocalhistory.co.uk/studies/bombingmap/BW-bombing-map-SN-A4-ds.jpg

probably worth checking out your local records office or archives
The National Archives | The Catalogue | Research Guides

Also I have looked at my local area civilian casualties on CWGC this gives an idea where bombs fell (obviously not all bombs because not all bombs caused casualties)
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#19 papaslut

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 01:07 PM

Sat 19th Oct 8-9pm 1940, Vessey cottages, Perry Hill Catford SE6. Huge 1,000lb bomb destroyed cottages, young couple killed in shelter next door, we 6 were buried alive, our shelter imploded, me as 3 year old dug out last.

This was opposite the pub 'The Rutland' now shut I believe.
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#20 At Home Dad

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Posted 17 September 2010 - 03:19 PM

Welcome to the forum!
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