World War 2 Stories for Sheffield

                       David Longdon 

A Village ARP Warden in Shuttlewood, Derbyshire

By actiondesksheffield

People in story: Albert Straw
Location of story: Shuttlewood, Derbyshire
Unit name: ARP
Background to story: Civilian Force


This story was submitted to the People’s War site by Norman Wigley of the BBC Radio Sheffield Action Desk on behalf of Mr Dave Longden.

My uncle, Albert Straw, known as ‘Chick’, served as ARP Warden in Bentinck Road, Shuttlewood, Derbyshire.

He told me of somebody’s chimney catching fire just at the same time as German bombers were passing over on their way to bomb Sheffield. There was nothing that could be done to extinguish the blaze, which in the blackout, could be seen for miles around. So everyone simply ran as far and as fast as they could away from the area, as they were certain that the enemy would bomb the fire. Nothing happened however - no bombs dropped! It may be that the Germans simply assumed it was a decoy.

He also told of an aircraft crashing in a forced landing on Zak Breedon’s Farm, near Shuttlewood at night. Everybody in the village grabbed anything they could use as a weapon and ran to the crash site thinking it was a German aircraft. It turned out to be two British airmen, who had been flying either a Boulton Paul Defiant, or a Beaufighter.