I was 7 years old when the Second World War started.  I lived in a small village called Lenham in Kent about 40 miles from London which was the main target for the Germans to bomb because of Buckingham Palace, Houses of Parliament and all the historic places.  About 40 miles in the other direction was Dover the main seaport to France.

We always had to take our gas masks to school and had gas mask drill about twice a month along with air raid shelter drill.  We had a purpose built shelter in the school playground. Gas masks always had to be carried in case of gas bomb attacks. Fortunately this was something that never happened during the Second World War.

In the second part of the war flying bombs (or rockets) were sent by the Germans from France, they were very frightening because they looked like an aeroplane on fire; they were bombs targeted for London but quite a few dropped in the Kent area.

Children from London were evacuated to our village which meant there was not enough room at the small village school so other places had to be found, one being the local church hall.

During the six years of war a lot of things were rationed including fruit.  Fruit grown in this country was plentiful but bananas and oranges from abroad came into the shops about every 6 to 8 weeks, which meant that there was always a queue at the shops to buy them, very small children had never seen bananas and wondered what they were.

I remember when the end of war was declared all the dancing and singing that went on in our local village square.


After the war, Freda met and married Bill Ward