World War 2 Stories for Sheffield

                     Pat Blanchard 

Hull Fireman’s Daughter

By Actiondesk Sheffield

People in story: Pat Blanchard
Location of story: Sheffield


This story was submitted to the People’s War site by Bill Ross of the ‘Action Desk – Sheffield’ Team on behalf of Pat Blanchard, and has been added to the site with the author’s permission. The author fully understands the site's terms and conditions.


Although living in Sheffield now, I was born in Hull and was aged three years when the war broke out. My main recollection was going into the air raid shelters at night. When the bombs fell, I remember that my little dog was so scared that he would climb into bed with me.
All the windows in the house were blown out.

I used to collect matchboxes from the pub. I remember meeting some Americans; they gave me a pencil and a comb. I gave the comb to my brother who turned it into a mouth organ by attaching a piece of paper to it. I kept the pencil myself and I scraped all the paint from it.

My father was a fire engine driver. One day, he stopped to pick up a woman, an act that saved his life. Had he not done so, he would have been at the exact spot where a bomb landed, at the time it landed.

I was evacuated to Bingley where I lived in a cottage with my mother and brothers. Then we moved to Bridlington where my dad joined the fire service.