Anyone remember this date? I had just left school at the end of July having reached 14 years of age and was looking for a job. We were living on Park Road in Blackwood and I recall I was helping (?) Mother in the kitchen and we suddenly got the voice of Neville Chamberlain on the radio. And the one sentence he uttered has stuck for ever in my mind. "Consequently, this country is now at war with Nazi Germany". I remember my Mother saying, "Well, that's that. Still, it won't be long till it's over. We'll soon see those bloody Jerries off!" No, twas'n't long! Just six blasted years!. Soon after I got my first job as an errand boy for Southcotts, the wallpaper and paint shop, delivering customer's orders on a bike with a great steel carrier fixed to the front. Wage? Seven shillings per week. Thursday, I believe, (or was it Wednesdays?) we only worked half a day, and Saturdays we closed about 5 pm. Worst delivery I had to make was to Mynyddislwyn which was at the top of a ruddy great hill to where it was impossible to pedal the bike so had to push it all the way up. Twas great though, going back down! Free wheeling all the way to Pentwynmawr. One good thing about living in the Monmouthshire/South Wales area was the fact that it was all hills and valleys and the Jerries could not get up there to bomb because of that. We used to go up to the top of the Penllwyn hill of Blackwood and watch the air-raids on Newport and Cardiff with all the searchlights and ack-ack guns going off.
Funny thing is. I'm still here to remember it!