A little bit of history

Mrs Munch

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Today me and the Mr went to visit my 98 year old nana. Still living by herself and still has all her marbles with a wicked sense of humour. Sadly, my grandad passed away 15 years ago, just before their 59th wedding anniversary, she still loves him and misses him everyday and says goodnight to him every night.

We got her talking about the war years, the good old years and found some memorabilia and thought we'd share.

On their wedding day :)

14718814_10154622880548674_785212293995037869_n.jpg

My nana is 4ft 11 and always been called little Dolly, she was a bit of A tomboy as a kid and was always getting into scrapes. The worst been when she was 8 years old, climbing up a wall behind her friend when a large brick came loose and crushed her fingers, for those that know Leeds it happened at Kirkstall what was then Middle Road (I believe) between Kirkstall road and Burley Road, she ran down towards Kirkstall Road as was found by a policeman, with blood all down her dress. He took her to a nearby butchers, where someone ran to tell her mum that the butcher had cut her fingers off, her mother then passed out... She did sadly loose two fingers on her right hand but my nana been my nana, right handed and stubborn decided that wasn't going to stop her and still used her right hand. She never let let her disability stop her doing anything.
During the war she work on 'munitions and then went to Yeadon to hand out tools to the guys working on the Lancaster's. She received this letter from Greenwood and Batley when she left the 'munitions factory.

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My Grandad fought in WW2, I couldn't find the paperwork to show which regiment he was in but we did find these;

IMG_20201207_123524864.jpg IMG_20201207_123455737.jpg A non-fraternisation letter and a letter of thanks from Eisenhower.


We came across this Christmas card, sent to my nana from my grandad. We are curious about the place names written on it. Does anyone know if these would be the place he fought at as we are assuming so?

IMG_20201207_123340984.jpg What he and everybody who served must have gone through is incomprehensible to me and there is no words to express that thanks and gratitude that i have for each and every one.

My grandad never spoke about the war when he got home, so sadly i don't have any little stories regarding it but if i'd have gone through all that, i wouldn't either.

A couple other things

IMG_20201207_123111354.jpg The Jubilee book of King George V
IMG_20201207_122030863.jpg and a black and white minstrel's record.


Does anyone else have any little bits of history. I love hearing about little stories like this.

We are now going to watch a bridge too far, have a lovely day all.

Love Queen Mrs Munch the 1st of maggotdowners.com ? :beautiful:
 

Wise Owl

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I would Love this old Lady to get her Cards from the Queen and to have a Natter with her over a Glass of Sherry or Stella if she Chose, My treat of Course (y)
 

Arfer Mo

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What you say about your Granddad not talking about the war is very true. My Dad hardly mentioned anything to me about the bad things, he mentioned a lot about things that went on which if true, how the heck did we win? In his later years he talked to my wife quite a bit.
 

NoCarpPlease

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That Christmas card looks like the progress of the British Second Army from Normandy, north-eastwards up in to lower saxony.

And yes - all were sites of major battles or key milestones on that journey (thanks to google)
Arromanches was the site of a Mulberry Harbour
the only tricky one is "Lethe" - which is a fairly obscure tributary in lower Saxony (and also one of he five rivers of Hades in Greek Mythology!)
 
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The Landlord

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What you say about your Granddad not talking about the war is very true. My Dad hardly mentioned anything to me about the bad things, he mentioned a lot about things that went on which if true, how the heck did we win? In his later years he talked to my wife quite a bit.
My dad never talked about it either. He was on HMS Jamaica in the battle of the Atlantic.
 

Wise Owl

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What i was led to believe is if they talked about it Bragging about Being in the SAS or sort it was Bravado Bullshit.
 

genesis

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Lad in our village was in "the regiment". Iraq, Afghanistan, non white ops, sadly got killed on duty. When they had the funeral at the village church his mates all came from Hereford and then got off their heads in the three pubs we have. He was about 5 foot 8 and can't have weighed more than 10 stone. Never said a word about it to anyone but turns out he was a proper hero.
 

dave the fish

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A bridge too far.

A8BF3C32-123A-4824-B19C-8D8020BA9E2F.jpeg

My dad never talked about it either. All we really know is that he was in the Royal Marines and served in Singapore and Rangoon in the last year or two of the war.
 

62tucker

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Sadly my grandad never came back to tell us stories. Died on the Burma railway.
His wife my gran lived to see 100 and still lived in her own home without any home helps etc
Got letter etc from Burma to my dad from my grandad. He left when my dad was 1 year old.
Never seen him again.
And some folk think they have it hard today.
 

Geoff P

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All my father told me about the war was he served with Spike Milligan, he and his mates hated Montgomery and American soldiers in Italy were not worth their weight in dog sh!te.
 

The Runner

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Some royal communications to the family...
Letter from the King to my grandad who died before I was born, who was a POW in WW1.
IMG_1768.JPG
My Dad's "Mention". He never told anyone what he got it for and if asked , said it was just for doing his job
IMG_1765.jpg
And Her Maj to my Gran for her hundredth. The royal family had obviously given up on handwriting and live signatures by this time.
IMG_1766.jpg
 

MunchMyStump

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What past generations went through was truly horrific. I know we still fight but not on a global scale and with such ferocity. Man to man, fighting in some instances hand to hand. Any able bodied man sent out to fight a war... Look at the snowflakes we now have. It really makes me wonder if humanity is really worth saving? Yes there are plenty of homeless and plenty going hungry but from my experience this mainly is by their own doing. Those that have defended our country and given their lives for our freedom should never be forgotten.
The list of locations Mrs. Munch's Grandfather fought through gave me goose bumps. The death toll of allied troops through those campaigns was huge! For him to come home, he was truly fortunate.
I rarely heard anything from my grandfather about his WW2 exploits. Only when he was dying and mentally infirm. He would stagger around the nursing home naked shouting for all he was worth, "The Germans are coming, the Germans are coming"
A mind tortured by war.
 

Neil ofthe nene

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My father never spoke of WW2 apart from telling us he landed on D (Day) + 2. I can only imagine the sights he must have witnessed. There is an often shown piece of newsreel footage of soldiers in a landing craft approaching the beach that is backed by large houses. Dad said that was where he landed. A Royal Engineer officer he was a draughtsman/surveyor by trade and was involved in map making and issuing so while not exposed at the sharp end had to be in close support.

Mum was an ATS sergeant I think mainly in canteens she would tell of feeding men, serving tea made in dustbins. And having to feed the "boy soldiers" separately because they got extra rations. Made a sergeant straight from the ranks when there was no time to wait for candidates to appear. Told one story of having to escort one girl to prison for stealing earrings. And was proud to have overheard her girls talking about her when they said she was tough but fair. I can vouch for the tough part, mum was always the disciplinarian.

Mum and dad should never have met. She was from a poor family from Fife, Scotland and tells of how, as a child she would keep lookout while parents stole coal from the railway wagons at the local pit. The coal was stored under her bed. Dad came from Irish landed gentry (my great grandfather was Archbishop of Ireland) . My grandfather was a Major General (RA) who was originally in the Irish army. Mum was supposed to have a date meeting a soldier in the Robin Hood hotel in Nottingham. The soldier got given extra duties and couldn't go so asked my dad to go and give his apologies to mum. The rest is history. Dad was effectively cut out of his father's will for marrying below his station.

This was grandmother's family home, now an agricultural college.

Ballyhaise-College.jpg

And the window raised in memory of my great grandfather in Armagh cathedral.

B_012_12A.jpg
 
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RedhillPhil

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As I've mentioned in previous posts. Eighty years ago twenty year olds were fighting and dying so that to-day's twenty year olds can whine about having safe spaces and demand that history can be changed to suit their brainwashed beliefs.
 

Barbelcatcher

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Might be 43rd Essex he was in - easy way to find out is:

a) write to War department quoting names of battle honours within the card, and his full name and date of birth.
b) the battle honours within the card, read down where the regiment fought. you could do searches on which regiments took part (partially how I found 43rd Wessex) on each battle. The only problem was that if regiments were badly decimated they were sometimes almagmated. A cap badge might help.
 
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SpenBeck

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Growing up my next door neighbour, Mrs Webster worked on Lancs at Yeadon during the war.

They ad a stool in the kitchen which had a top made from a seat off a Lanc.

P.S. Ex-Father-in-Law was in the 1st Norfolks during the war and ended liberating Becks Brewery in Bremen at the end of the war.
 

Barbelcatcher

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I used to have a Polish gentleman work for me, who was always polite and never talked much about the war. One day we were talking about my father, (who was Polish) and who had been taken by the Germans for conscripted labour, when they invaded his village. They also machined gunned down 22 other people in a local field as a sign of Mastery. When I finished some of my Dad's story, I asked Ted what he had done during the war. He was in the polish free army in the Polish 1st Independent Parachute Brigade, and had suffered a head injury during practice and was in hospital. They announced the regiment/division was going on an important mission, and Ted discharged himself to join his mates. At this time of telling his tale, hesitation in the manner of his speech and tears started to fill his eyes. They dropped at Arnham, and out of Ted's cohort of about 110 friends only 8 survived, himself being one. He couldn't talk after that, his body heaved with sobs and he waved me away.

I still get tears just writing about it - brave men lying down their lifes for their adopted country. God bless you Ted and all the others who went through such hell for us.
 

NoCarpPlease

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Thanks for that memory Barbelcatcher. The role played by the free poles in WWII is often underreported.

referring back to @GeoffP earlier comment - it was the polish troops who finally raised their flag on Monte Cassino - after sufferring horrendous losses on the slopes.
A photo of troops fighting their way up the shattered slopes towards the bombed out Abbey of Monte Cassino is imprinted on my memory from a history book that I read as a child.

There was a really interesting programme with Gary Lineker about the Italian campaign a few weeks ago.
 

SpenBeck

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I used to have a Polish gentleman work for me, who was always polite and never talked much about the war. One day we were talking about my father, (who was Polish) and who had been taken by the Germans for conscripted labour, when they invaded his village. They also machined gunned down 22 other people in a local field as a sign of Mastery. When I finished some of my Dad's story, I asked Ted what he had done during the war. He was in the polish free army in the Polish 1st Independent Parachute Brigade, and had suffered a head injury during practice and was in hospital. They announced the regiment/division was going on an important mission, and Ted discharged himself to join his mates. At this time of telling his tale, hesitation in the manner of his speech and tears started to fill his eyes. They dropped at Arnham, and out of Ted's cohort of about 110 friends only 8 survived, himself being one. He couldn't talk after that, his body heaved with sobs and he waved me away.

I still get tears just writing about it - brave men lying down their lifes for their adopted country. God bless you Ted and all the others who went through such hell for us.
On my first job working in a dye house, there was a guy we called Polish George. He was dropped at Arnham with the Parachute Brigade. I have never heard anyone F or Blind as much in all my life. George used to go on about the Russian's more than the Germans though.
 

Barbelcatcher

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My dad was at Monte Cassino, but only as a supporting role I believe in the regiment. Still got all his discharge papers. Again he wouldn't talk much about it. One vidid memory what sticks in my mind, is that when liberated by the Americans, the unit he then joined, decided to visit a brothel in France. Or better still the older soldiers stated that he could join them, so he could lose his virginity. He said he took one look and ran!
 
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