Childhood Memories of Wartime in London

The day I was born, Hitler’s troops annexed Austria, and the first ripple of war moved across Europe. This is a personal memory of growing up in war torn London, remembering air raids, the bombing, and the air raid shelters we slept in. It was after Hitler invaded Poland that England went to war, and that’s when thousands of children, including my brother and sister, were evacuated to the country. After they came back my mother said, “If we are going to die, we are all going to die together.” My uncle manned one of the ‘little boats’ that crossed the Channel and brought back soldiers from Dunkirk. At age 16, my brother volunteered for the Merchant Navy, and he was in many convoys that constantly crossed the Atlantic in spite of German submarines. After 6 years, the war finished, and gradually things returned to normal. For me growing up with war had been my normal, and it took a while to adjust to no blackout, sleeping in a bed, and having all the family home together.