Monthly news summary of all the happenings and up and coming events in the Scottish Traditional Music scene.
Clydeside reminiscenses of the Home Front, 1939 - 45 by Margaret Bennett.
Folklorist Dr Margaret Bennett collected these reminicences of life in Clydeside at the time of the second World War. Those sharing their memories and (songs) are the good ladies of the Kinning Park Over Sixties Club. Gripping, touching, funny, their stories are an important insight into what it was like to be on the Home Front in wartime Scotland. The sections include Rationing, The Blackout, Women at Work, The Clydebank Blitz, Evacuees, and of course, entertainment and Songs. There is a CD of the ladies singing and reminiscing included with the book.
"If we don't tell the children and grandchildren what it was like on the Home Front, who will tell them?"
CD Track list
1. Lilli Marlene
2. Yes, We Have No Bananas
3. Hang Out the Washing
4. Dave Willis in the Pavilion (Helen Nicol)
5. Wee Gas Mask
6. Maizy Doates
7. Run Rabbit Run
8. Roll Out The Barrel
9. Pack up Your Troubles
10. Flitting (May Anderson)
11. Christening Pieces (May and Nan Millar)
12. Scrammles (May and Nan)
13. Rationing (Jean Michie)
14. Our ARP man (Jean Michie)
15. We laughed through the tears (Jean Michie)
|Title:||I have just finished reading your book "See, when you look back.." and listened to the CDs. It was fantastic, I thoroughly enjoyed it.|
|Review:||I have just finished reading your book "See, when you look back.." and listened to the CDs. It was fantastic, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Your book brought back many memories of my childhood in Glasgow; playing peevers, cawing and skipping ropes, scrambles at weddings, living in a tenement, and the wonderful Glesca sense of humour and community spirit. I also recalled the impact of the war on my early childhood. The gas masks - I hated having to practice wearing them, as a result I hate the smell of rubber near my face. The air raid shelters - closed spaces now make me claustrophobic. Rationing - I actually preferred scrambled eggs made from the powder concentrate - but remember the sheer delight of tasting my first banana at the end of the war. Evacuation - I was evacuated along with my Mother and Brother to Doune, near Callander - happy memories of the village, we always revisit when we go home to Scotland on holidays.
It was wonderful to hear the stories of the Kinning Park ladies - what characters. Their experiences filled in some gaps in my understanding of the Home Front. My father served with the Glasgow Fire Service and was involved in the fire fighting and rescue during the Clydebank Blitz. He was affected by what he saw but never spoke in detail about it. Although in danger in his role as a fireman, it was not regarded as heroic as serving overseas in the forces. I recall my Dad getting irate when a returned soldier said "Sandy you were fine and safe at home while we were off fighting for your freedom" My Dad replied "Och, do you think I felt safe in Clydebank fighting fires while bombs were still dropping and building were collapsing all around. I thought that the war had come to us and we were fighting for Glasgow's survival" I think that this was typical of the attitude towards those that served at home for the war effort. It was great to read of the experience of some of the women whose hard work played an important role in the war effort. You gave them the recognition they deserved.
My husband and I have started to document our life stories for ourselves as well as children and grandchildren. I find that it gives me the opportunity to reminisce on the past events and reflect on how this has influenced my attitude and opinions. My husbands experience, though some similarities are also contrasting. You see, Bill was born on the other side of the conflict, in a small town close to Hamburg in Germany. Night after night the Allies bombed the city, in an effort to bring the Nazi regime to submission. So many civilian and miliary lives were lost on both sides due to power of a dictator. May we never forget the responsibility of electing honourable leaders!
At the end of the war, Bill, along with his Mother and Yugoslav Step-father came to Australia as "DisplacedPerson" as part of the International Refugee Organisation resettlement scheme. I emigrated to West Australia in 1955 with my parents. Bill and I met and married in 1962, we have three married sons and nine grandchildren. We have our unique stories to tell which may be of interest to our decedents.
Thank you for the CD of the recording of the interview on "The Reel Blend". We enjoy listening to BBC Scotland on the internet. My husband loves anything Scottish and is a past Chieftain of The West Australian Caledonian Society, so he is sort of an Honorary Scot. Thank you for including the segment on the CD of "Lili Marleen", it is was very applicable especially for Bill. It was interesting on how important the song was to both sides and it was in fact an antiwar song. We received so much pleasure from your effort.
We hope the bairns in Scotland appreciate your work and have an understanding of how a community can pull together in hard times to make life worth living. I hope they also develop a respect for those wonderful uncomplaining ladies of The Kinnington Park Over Sixties Club. .......Kind regards, BS
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