Memories of a Wartime Evacuee - Staverton 1940

“In 1940 my family, including my mother, father, two brothers and one sister, evacuated from Hillingdon, Middlesex to Staverton via the Cheltenham Social Service.

I was nine years old and was billeted with my brother Sidney, who was three years older than myself, with a couple who had a garage on the Gloucester Road.

My parents and brother, Terry (8) and sister June (5) were billeted with an older couple who had a small holding, consisting of an orchard, some pigs and chickens, a little way along the road towards Cheltenham.

My father was a Centre Lathe Turner and got employment at Dowty.

My brother and I enjoyed our time at Staverton; walking to school across fields, using a small bridge to cross a stream, the school had one large room divided by a curtain.

After school my younger brother and I climbed the hill that rises above the village; we did that many times.

The couple who ran the garage we’re lucky to have a car and they liked to go out for drink in the evening; my brother and I were taken along and given a glass of lemonade and a packet of crisps, then waited in the car till it was time to go home.

We really enjoyed are stay at the garage and I believe there is still a garage there.

My father was on the night shift and used a bike go to work; one night, some one stole his lights which upset him!

I don’t know much about what he did at Dowty’s and why in time, it was decided to return to Hillingdon.

My older brother and I went to stay with relatives In Falmouth Cornwall and spent much of the war there.”

Malcolm Spargo

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