WW2 Nottingham & Nottinghamshire


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My dad, far left, in the Army. 1940. Place unknown.  

My dad, far left, with the Nottingham Auxiliary Fire Service outside the Cedars Hospital in Nottingham, 1940.

My dad, far right, with the Nottingham Auxiliary Fire Service, 1940.

Welcome Phil

Are you originally from Nottingham?

Mick, yes I am, lived all over Nottingham as a kid, Gedling, Arnold, Mansfield, City Centre. Left at 17 though and joined up, still in (19 years later). Will probably never live in Notts again as we've bought elsewhere, but still have family there.

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!englandflag! Phil,

Email me on my address, it can be found in my profile details...................

Paulus,

I looked on your profile but couldn't find an actual address, so I just used the link to send you a message. Not sure if it worked though. I do hope to hear from you though, really interested in learning a little more about my Granddads time in the desert and beyond.

Phil :-)

!englandflag!

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WW2 Reserved Occupations

Civil Servants - some

Dock Workers

Doctors (Unless in the Territorial Army)

Farmers

Journalists, Artists involved in propaganda work and some other media workers

Merchant Seamen

Miners

Police officers

Priests, Monks, Nuns and anyone in Holy orders

Railway Workers

Scientists

Students (Undergraduates could be deferred, but not exempted)

Teachers and University lecturers

Utility Workers - Water, Gas, Electricity

Hey Littlebro, mind if I add the fire Brigade to your list. My father was a part time fireman at the start of the war and was immediatly seconded into AFS and sent to the south to be able to get to London when the bombs dropped. Will put our family story here shortly. I was born in April just after the start of it all.

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  • 4 weeks later...

70 years ago today:

"The gratitude of every home in our Island, in our Empire, and indeed throughout the world, except in the abodes of the guilty, goes out to the British airmen who, undaunted by odds, unwearied in their constant challenge and mortal danger, are turning the tide of the world war by their prowess and by their devotion. Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few".

Winston S Churchill

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Regarding "reserved occupations", there seems to have been two classes to be considered.

Firstly, if you were in one of the listed "reserved occupations" you were generally prevented from leaving the occupation to sign-up. They were considered as important industries etc essential to the good of the nation and war effort. Working in a reserved occupation was considered equal to being in the forces.

Secondly, outside of the list of reserved occupations, if you were in employment as a "key worker" you could apply for exemption from call-up. Additionally, an employer could ask for exemption if he/she believed a loss of a key worker would harm the business. Whilst exemption from call-up could be granted, such requests do not mean the occupations were termed "reserved". In other words, if say an engineer was granted an exemption it did not follow that all engineers throughout the land were similarly exempt. Each case was decided on its merit.

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MICHAEL, there's something Compelling I find about the photograph of your dad @ #39:

'Mighty Fine's' face draws me in like a magnet. For some strange reason, I find it hard to leave him ...........He draws me ........

'There is something greater than love, he thought. Far greater. I feel it, something that makes love seem primitive. I

can't say what it is, but I know that it exists, though one can only get to it through love.'

'Before Snow Comes' Alan Sillitoe

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My grandad always told me a story, In 1942 he was a 12 year old living on Colwick Road, One day, him, his brother Dennis and there mates were playing in the road when a german airplane, think he said " Messerschmidt" ? probably spelt it wrong, came down colwick road and started shooting up the road. Everybody walking had to dive for cover as quick as they could.

Another time during the Nottingham Blitz, His family were taking shelter during the big air raid of May, when an incendiary bomb came thought the roof and landed in the bathroom (they had a posh house for the 40's) the bomb didn't go off on impact, My Great uncle being home on leave, had just placed a bucket of sand on the bomb and shut the door when it went off. He was catapulted down the stairs and hit the front door. Unbelievably, he had no injuries except a small cut down his arm where the door had splintered as it was blew off its hinges.

He also said the houses in that row, Numbers 145 - 153 had there cellar walls removed and rebuilt with sand incase the houses did come down, they could always ecape into the next houses cellar.

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That explains something that has puzzled me since the 1960s

There was a cast iron Trolleybus wire support pole outside the church opposite Earl Manvers Pub

I always though the hole melted in it could be wartime damage?

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Sabotage infrastructure?


At Edwards Lane rail bridge, during WW2, large concrete blocks were placed adjacent to the road, ready to lift into place and block the route if and when necessary. I will have seen this, but was too young to remember, I only know from parents` tales.

On the same rail line, closer to Daybrook Station, the line ran on an embankment over a single arch, brick-built bridge, which was probably for farm access. With other local kids in 1948/9/50, I noticed `items` in the brickwork, which had all the appearances of dynamite, (according to cowboy films we had seen at the Roxy!) The rods just fit into the mortar courses, so, half an inch diameter. About half an inch of the rod end was exposed. We tried prising them out but were unable. They were inserted in pairs, I recall finding three pairs at different locations. Each pair was linked together by a short wire, with a flying lead from one stick. The stick material and wire were both ferric and badly corroded. It would seem strange to use steel or iron wire to carry electrical current.

As 8/9/10 years olds, we just assumed it really was explosive. As a teenager, thinking back, I realised no one would leave viable explosive all in place for any idiot, (such as us) to fiddle with.

My theory for years has been that soldiers or Home Guard types, will have practiced, in readiness for the real thing. If the road bridge was worthy of blocking, then I suppose the rail line also was, and an easy way would be to blow the bridge from under it.

Anyone else seen any similar things? In the field adjacent to the line was a brick-built air raid shelter, at least, we assumed it was. Probably six to seven feet high, with single slab concrete roof about six inches thick. Heavy steel door into a room about ten by eight feet, no windows, concrete floor. Walk round to the opposite side and find an identical door and room. The internal wall dividing the two had no interconnecting door. Could have been storage of some type. Very strong roof, but the vertical brick walls wouldn`t have stood much blast. There was no inclined earth banking against the walls.

Any ideas?






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There used to be an all concrete shelter, firstly in our next door's garden 265 Nottingham Rd as that was used as an ARP centre in WW2, An indentical one still exists at the end of some old "cottages" on Prospect St off Radford Blvd. I said in next doors garden (265 Nottingham Rd New Basford) as we later moved to that address from 267) On paper an ideal den for us, in reality not so good as no door or window frame in such and all attempts to fit them failed! (electric drills being a rarity back then) I remember a good few of the brick walls/concrete roof "death traps", as mentioned the walls blew down and the god knows how many tons concrete dropped crushing those sheltering inside, examples of those were at most schools and lots of factories, one that lasted till at least 2000 was on Whitemoor Park Old Basford used as a store room for tools and football goalposts and nets etc, I also recall 2 public semi underground shelters, one still there on Lortas Rd New Basford, for years after the war used as a mushroom farm, and another large one at the back of Foreman's Print Works Hucknall Rd Carrington, both these 2 were magnets for the local kids, a big dare to get into such. Also recall being told of one on Dakeyne St by an old boy I worked with, he reckoned a bomb landed on the road and bounced either though the shut door or via an open one and into it, he maintained it was all hushed up and no attempt made to retrieve the bodies (no idea if true)

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Not quite WW2 but just after.

In about 1945/6 myself and two cousins were at the boating lake by the university at Clifton.

All of a sudden the sky was filled with thousands of aircraft flying east to west. I presume it was to celebrate our winning the war. Maybe this is the flypast in which Douglas Bader flew in.

Anyone remember it or took photographs.

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I remember it, but would put the date at 1948/49. I say this because I was visiting my aunt in Old Basford and witnessed the flypast from her back yard, on a Sunday I think it was. As she was married in 1948, this must have been the earliest date it could have been.

In the post-war years the RAF used to have operations involving the squadrons of Bomber and Fighter Commands, which were in effect practices in readiness for war. I recall that the aircraft in the formation were all bombers, Avro Lincolns and maybe some Lancasters. I am not aware that the reason for the flypast was celebratory, but it might have been.

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Where Padstow school once stood,it was known as Camp Hill" and i remember as a kid spending many hours playing in what we called "the dungeons" they were in fact the wartime emplacements of "AK AK" guns,our Geography teacher told us that if you travelled in a perfect line East it was the highest point until you got to the Ural mountains.

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I too saw them at Basford but New Basford, corner of Rosetta Road. both my dad and uncle saw them too, not sure where Karl the german pow was? probably by then liberated.

As regards the Ural Mountains have heard the same thing said re the area just after the turn off to Kirby in Ashfield (Shoulder of Mutton Hill) 0n the A611, a plaque high on the wall of one of the cottages there states that point is the highest in Nottinghamshire or something like that, no idea if it is

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