Gransnet forums

Christmas Day 1940.

(11 Posts)
Maywalk Thu 06-Dec-18 10:58:24

A CHRISTMAS DAY MEMORY.

I sit and ponder about a certain Christmas Day many years ago
I remember very plainly of having no home and no place to go.
The year was nineteen forty in the middle of the London Blitz
Jerry pounding us with bombs, he tried hard to break the Brits

We finished up in our air-raid shelter to keep us from the cold
Listening to the bombs dropping down as hell began to unfold.
Christmas was fast approaching but no presents were in sight
It was dangerous for Santa to travel in the war stricken night.

At least that was what I was told by my fourteen-year-old brother!
No stocking put up for a Christmas, just comforting each other.
Christmas Day dawned and the firemen were so tired and weary
This did not deter them, they battled on as they remained cheery.

Along came a water cart at last to get water for a cup of Rosie Lee
How would the British survive without their cup of cheering tea?
We managed to have a quick wash to greet that Christmas morning
In case we were bombed again and had to heed the air-raid warning.

But it remained quiet, a deathly hush that seemed to envelop us all
A Christmas Day that remained in my memory that I can well recall.
It was like sitting on the edge of a volcano just waiting for it to erupt
Suddenly the sound of voices was heard the silence it did interrupt.

A radio was playing and the choristers were singing a rousing song
Many joined in the chorus as the voices made us all feel strong.
For those who have never witnessed a moving scene such as this
I thank the Lord! It was something that I would not have missed

I have never had that feeling of awe since that fateful day long ago
A kindred spirit amid a city razed that brought forth a certain glow
Of pride and joy that existed for a short time as we all started to sing
A song called “Santa Claus is coming to town” with voices in full swing

Its well over 74 yrs since that awesome day, I give thanks I am still alive
I very often wonder how through all that hell we managed to survive.
I hope and pray it will never happen again to any future generations
And may everyone be thankful as they enjoy their happy celebrations.

copyright---Maisie Walker 2004-- all rights reserved.

Smiley4 Thu 06-Dec-18 13:10:34

How lovely. And really fascinating to hear how Christmas Day in the war would have been. It makes you realise that it’s not presents, or how much you spend, that makes Christmas. Xx

Maywalk Thu 06-Dec-18 15:46:00

Thanks Smiley. x x

Jalima1108 Thu 06-Dec-18 15:58:17

Thank you Maywalk

It's nice to see you back here again tchsmile
as a post-war baby I didn't encounter any of that but my DB (and of course the rest of the family) did.

Maywalk Thu 06-Dec-18 16:40:23

Thankyou for the welcome back Jalima.

annodomini Thu 06-Dec-18 17:11:09

I was six weeks old on Christmas Day 1940, so it was my first Christmas, even though I don't remember it. It must have been poignant for my parents at a time when everything was in the balance and nobody knew in what kind of world their new daughter was to grow up.

Maywalk Thu 06-Dec-18 18:15:07

Even when the war was over annodomini it was another struggle to get back on our feet again but strangely enough everyone helped each other. To make things worse the 1947 winter was the worst one I can ever remember in my lifetime.

annodomini Thu 06-Dec-18 18:57:48

I missed out on the 1947 winter because I'd just recovered from pneumonia and was deemed too delicate to go our and play in the snow. Was very peeved about that at the time!

Cherrytree59 Thu 06-Dec-18 19:22:52

Very poignant
Maywalk.

My DF and his family lost everything including their homes in the Clydebank Blitz.
It was loss of his and his brothers toys from the previous Christmas that seemed to upset my father the most, when he spoke about it later in life he had a wee tear in his eyes.
His brother lost his red pedal car and my father his sailing boat that had been made his father.

I'm sure my grandparents were just glad they were alive and had much more pressing matters to worry about like a roof over their heads.
They had taken refuge with other bombed out familys in the church hall.

Maywalk Thu 06-Dec-18 19:27:47

Yes it was a VERY distressing time for many Cherrytree. We had lost two homes and finished up in the pub cellar, but like the rest of the nation we picked ourselves up and dusted ourselves down and started rebuilding our lives.

MargaretX Thu 06-Dec-18 21:40:14

I remember Christmas as being a cold miserable time with no presents and the grown ups bad tempered when the gas failed and the Turkey never got roasted. It must have been war time and I was very small. I still don't like Christmas and will be glad when its all over.