World War 2 Stories for Sheffield

                           Doris Dalby 

Elizabeth Street

By Actiondesk Sheffield

People in story: Doris Dalby (nee Greener), Margaret Canonville (nee Greener), Thomas Greener and sarah Greener
Location of story: Bradford
Background to story: Civilian


This story was submitted to the People’s War site by Bill Ross of the ‘Action Desk – Sheffield’ Team on behalf of Doris Dalby (nee Greener).  ============================================

Dad served time in the army abroad but was discharged with a perforated eardrum leading to Meniers disease. We lived in Elizabeth Street Bradford West Yorkshire. We two girls were only aged 4 And 2 but
have memories of the British Soldiers and the Italian Prisoners of war using the Swimming Baths that we lived opposite. Both the British and Italian Soldiers used to come to our house and use My Mum’s piano.
Dad also used to paint pictures and frame them, which we believe he possibly sold to the soldiers to make ends meet. I myself have very little memory of this but my sister has filled in the gaps.
Later on the British soldiers were sent on their duty to fight abroad but the boat was torpedoed and sadly all the soldiers were killed.
Being the war days, money was very tight. My Dad was a master joiner so all our toys we got for Birthdays and Christmas he made himself. I can remember us both being so proud of our little wooden dolls that had a beautifully painted face and arms and legs that moved. To top this off we both had a
wooden pram to push our dolls about in. We were very lucky girls.
Rations were scarce during the war and Mum was allowed clothing coupons and Ration Books for our weekly food. We had dried eggs, powdered milk and bread was 4 1/2d a loaf. I can remember queuing with Mum for four hours to get the 2/6d from the relief fund building. As a child it was just Mum getting money, but now I know this was embarrassing for her and other families in the same situation.
We can both remember having to go into the cellar when the sirens came. This I can only remember as being a little scary and still not too keen on cellars to this day. We can also remember having to carry a
gas mask at all times. Times in the cellar seemed endless; we could be down there all night until the bombs ceased. If we were outside and the sirens came we had to make it to the nearest air raid shelter.
When I was at school, the evacuees that came to Bradford, stayed with some of our teachers at their homes.
I have great memories of watching Mum making some buns, this was a real treat (buns were not on our regular daily diet). We then took the buns outside, all the neighbours got together, each family brought
what food and treats they could. There were buntings flying and Street parties were held everywhere.
This I can remember well, not really knowing the occasion but every child likes a party.
Now we know that this was the end of the war, fondly known now as VE Day.