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Air Raid Experiences

by Lillian Holstead

1941 The blackout was in force, and no lights were allowed anywhere. German bombers were over every night, pounding Manchester and we could hear the noise as well as see the havoc being caused. There was an Air Raid Precaution Shelter behind St James Street, although they were all fields then. The Air Raid Precaution Wardens were like us, watching the skies. We were a group of teenagers on our way home from dancing at St James's Church Hall in Harrowby Street. In those days, an old man used to look after the boilers underneath the church and he slept there as well.

Whilst we were watching the assault on Manchester, one of the Wardens said, "my god, its enough to waken the dead", just then the old man popped his head over the wall, near the gate on George Street and said - "is it going any quieter yet mates? Whoosh, we all ran, he gave us a heck of a fright and we were all gone.