Inspirational women remember the day Second World War broke out 80 years ago - The Solihull Observer

Inspirational women remember the day Second World War broke out 80 years ago

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Solihull Editorial 3rd Sep, 2019   0

SOLIHULL residents have marked the 80th anniversary of the start of the Second World War in a touching video.

Residents at the Royal Star and Garter Home in Solihull have spoken about their memories of September 3, 1939 when war was declared on Germany.

The home, which cares for ex-Servicemen and women and their spouses living with disability or dementia, made the video to capture and share the memories of its residents from all three of its homes in the country.

Solihull resident Joan Sprigg was 15 years old and remembers the look on her father’s face when Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain announced Britain was at war.

Joan, who later served in the 2nd Anti-Aircraft Group Command at RAF Uxbridge, said: “We learned the very grave news on the radio, that Hitler had given no undertaking that he would withdraw his troops from Poland and Czechoslovakia, so consequently the Prime Minister said this country is now at war with Germany.

“My mother cried and said, ‘life would never be the same again’.

“My father looked very grave and serious.

“He served in the First World War and all those memories were very fresh in their minds.”

Fellow Silhillian Margaret Roberts, whose husband served in the army, was only six at the time and found out while her mother was running her a bath.

She said: “Someone came to the door – I don’t know who it was or what was said but I know my mother came back and she was crying and she called across the next door’s garden to the women next door about the news, and for a little while, while my bath water went cold they were very distressed.

“The actual day itself was a trauma. I can’t even remember finishing the bath.

“There was an atmosphere that things were different and going to be different.”

The Royal Star and Garter was formed in 1916 to care for severely injured men returning from the First World War battlefields and went on to care for Second World War veterans.

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