Carol Mason

The first indication that my sister Audrey and I were going to be evacuated was when my mother took us to the w.v.s charity shop to obtain clothes. A day or so later mum told us we were going away because of the war, to be looked after, and kept safe away from the German bombs... I was

8 years old at the time, and my sister was 5.

I remember being at Brighton station with our gas mask box round our necks, and a carrier bag each with string handles containing our clothes, and our name tags on our coats.... The train arrived, and we were ushered aboard. There seemed quite a lot of evacuees, but not sure how many... My sister, being only 5 started crying as the train pulled away, and I could see mum crying too... I can't remember how long the journey took but we eventually arrived at Kiveton Park, a village in Yorkshire....near Sheffield.

We were lined up in the street and people walked up and down looking at us... We were very scared. Some people offered to take either myself or my sister but I held my sisters hand and said we were to stay together....

Two ladies stopped in front of us, and wanted to take us home... I said we wanted to stay together, and the ladies explained that we would only be a few doors away from each other, and would see each other every day and even have sleep overs. So being very tired we relented...I lived at 112 Wales Road, and my sister at 134 Wales Road...so not too far apart.

I arrived at my new home, and was immediately so surprised.  Coming from a family of 7 people and having to share everything, here I was the only child with two lovely people who I referred to as auntie May and uncle Harold Dove, and my own bedroom... My sister was in the same situation..

She referred to her new parents as auntie Sabra and uncle George Miller.

After a settling in period we were introduced to our new school called Wales road school. From day one we were treated like outsiders and my sister being small and shy was often bullied, and not treated very well, not only by the other children but also one teacher who took a dislike to her and picked on her daily.

However, as time went by things improved, and we were being thoroughly spoilt by our new parents...but we did have rules to obey.... Some of the other evacuees had awful homes, and were treated like slaves...... We were so lucky,  and some of the routines have stayed with us to this day.

Every Saturday my sister, her auntie, me and my auntie would dress up and go shopping to Sheffield or Worksop, and have lunch out... As soon as we arrived home we always had to change out of our nice clothes, and hang them up neatly... Both my sister and I still do this today. Also my sister used to have to change for dinner, which she still does.

Sunday was chapel day, we all went to morning service and then after lunch my sister and I went to Sunday school. While we were at Sunday school auntie and uncle would rest and then when I returned home I laid the table for Sunday tea. In the evening we all dressed up and went back to the chapel for evensong. Then we went for a walk.

My sisters uncle was a miner at Kiveton Park colliery, and loved gardening.. He used to plant things, and when they grew they spelt out Audrey's  name.. I used to think he was magic... My uncle was a brilliant tailor, and used to make me the most beautiful clothes...I used to have my little jobs to do, like going to the butchers Monday morning before school to get the tripe for auntie and uncles dinner.  Auntie would cook me something different as I didn't like tripe.  Saturday mornings I would go to the sweet shop with our ration books and buy uncles humbugs..

Aunties fruit drops and whatever I wanted...I think we only heard the air raid siren a few times all the time we were there..... We used to have parties in the air raid shelter....I did forget to mention that I wet the bed for weeks when we first arrived, but soon settled down.

Halfway through our stay we did go back home for my eldest sisters wedding, and we were both homesick for Kiveton Park, and couldn't get back quick enough.