Transcript for Blitz and War in Clydebank

<Em could you tell me what you remember about the nights of the blitz?> Yes, I remember perfectly well. We all had a case packed with clothing. And we had one case with all the insurance policies to take with us to the shelter. And we had a syphon of soda and a beaker, plastic beaker, inside the shelter. It was all fitted out for four of us, and there were nine in it that night over from across the street. So the next night we had to take out the chairs that we had in, it was basket chairs we had in, we had to take them out and we put in butter boxes up on end and put planks of wood along them. And Ah think there would be about ten or eleven in the next two or three nights. We- funnily enough we we were prepared for them coming in the second night and we had lit candles inside flower pots and put them in to heat the place before we went in. It was amazing, Ah mean to think that they were coming back the next night and we were prepared for them. It was shorter, but sharper the second night. My husband, he was out on duty of course, he was a police man. You never saw such a ragged lot of policemen in your life, ’cause every time a bomb started to whistle, they had to get down, and they were cut by all the glass out of the broken windows. Ah mean. They’d to send to Edinburgh for new uniforms for them, they couldn’t supply them in Glasgow. Nobody knew it who didn’t come through it. You’d never have believed it had you been told that you were going to come through it, you wouldn’t have believed it. <Did you think it was just another false alarm when the siren went off?> To begin with, yes, I was in on duty in the canteen, we had a canteen in the mission hall, and I was on duty, and of course all the men were down from all the various stations. When the red light came through they had to run. We took our time and cleared up washed up all the dishes and swept the floor and everything. Before the night was out, it was used as a a rescue centre for the people who were bombed out. But when we come along the road we could hear the bombs dropping up in Killermont. That was the first of them, was up in the Killermont area, up off Hyndland, and eh, we had euhf our bottom kitchen had a big iron pole in the centre so we decided we’d go down there, and there were thirteen down there that night with us. And Ah thought, ‘This is silly’, because we had bars on that window. If we got the stairway jammed, how were we gonnae get out? However, fortunately, with my house we didn’t get too bad, but every door was off its hinge. Dreadful really. Oh, the lights and the the hills were a picture of incenderies. They were a picture. And we walked up the road with a friend past Erskine Ferry, she lived up in that direction, and a friend and I walked up the road with her. And, eh, you saw an awful lot of devastation. Terrible. And you couldn’t get up the main road into Dalmuir because of two of the tanks were on fire.

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