Sunday Morning September 3rd 1939

All our lives were changed that morning

Photograph of a newspaper seller in central London on 3 September 1939

A newspaper seller in central London on 3 September 1939. The News of The World placard announces – War Declared (Official).

I was on the bus on my way down into Newcastle centre heading for one of the few shops which were open on a Sunday at that time – Boots the Chemist at the top of Grainger Street.

The object of my journey – to buy a Thermos Flask for my brother who needed it to take to work the next day. I should explain, he broke his flasks at regular intervals and I always got the job of going to Boots to get another one. War or no war.

During the journey the air raid alarm sounded, but the bus driver kept on going. I got the flask and returned safely home.  Mum was very much relieved to see me and the flask in one piece.  Not having been bombed or anything.

All our lives were changed that morning.  As I arrived home, Neville Chamberlain was announcing on the wireless that we were at war with Germany, and it was evil we would be fighting.

I was 16 years of age and was going to be 17 on the 19th of that month. Being too young to join the WAAF (which I wanted too) I joined Air Raid Precautions until I reached my 18th birthday the following year. I then joined the WAAF and spent my war service working as a plotter in the operations room at RAF Station, Uxbridge Middlesex.

AS Leading Aircrafts women S/D C. Trainer  2110143.

If you've enjoyed this memory and would like to share a story of your own why not go to our Contact Page to find out more.