regular. They used to come in during the week, but they'd never bring them into the siding during the week for us to unload. We used to have to do it on a weekend. We used to play hell about that!'

The coal was for the yard?

'It used to heat the kilns. That's why the big stack was there. It used to burn the bricks, bake them.'

Can you remember your first air raid?

'Oh aye, they used to come over regular where we were. That was September '43. Why, it wasn't so much then, but it got worse and worse as we got into '44 and the back end of '44, oh! When they used to go to Berlin they used to go near where we were. We were about 50 miles south of Berlin and Dresden wasn't very far away. Why, you can see on the map. And you could hear them going over.'

And the siren would go?

'Oh, aye, just the same as here. We had a shelter on top of the brickyard, we used to go in there. And there was one where the lager was, on some waste ground. There was one there--that's where the civvies used to go.'

Did you have much to do with the POWs from the other countries?

'No. We used to see them. There was Russians and all sorts in the village, but they were all in separate camps. They were in every town and village in Germany. POWs. There was all bloody sorts: Russians, Poles, Serbs, French, English, American, Indians--we even had Indians in our village. Used to see them walking about from one place to another. Oh, there was any amount of Russians.'

What were their uniforms like?

'Oh, they had all bloody sorts on, them buggers, anything. I've seen the buggers with rags around their feet, snow on the ground and no boots or bugger all. The French just used to knock about, they just used to walk about. They could go down to the town on their own. We couldn't--you had to have somebody with you. If you didn't have the guard with you, you had to have a civvie with you. But the French--there was two of them used to live in a hut just round the corner from us, round the back of the house They didn't have to have guard. They just used to walk around. They used to go down in the village and things like that, where we weren't allowed. They used to work in this, I think it was an armaments factory somewhere. They used to get this pure alcohol--and they were in the rackets an' all. If you had a bar of chocolate and you wanted some bread or some eggs, they'd get it for you.'

So there was some trading going on?

'We used to do a bit now and again but we weren't really bothered. But that was our main shortage after we started getting the parcels: bread. Because we only used to get about 450 grams a day, that was all we used to get.'

What jobs did the other men do?

'There was about twelve of us down there.' The brickyard. 'There was them two there.' Alfie Granger and Nev Chamberlain, 'In the Swiss woman's workshop. There was about six worked on the town, like on the council and there was another couple they had a job somewhere and then there was one, Pat O'Sullivan, he got a job in the kitchen helping the woman who used to do the cooking. He used to work in there, peeling the tatties and things like that. But he had a good job him and he used to be down there all day and all night. Why aye, he used to come in at eight or nine o'clock at night, him. He was down in the kitchen all day.

'Sangster, I think he was a Sergeant, but he pulled his tapes off so he could get out on the working parties. Because if you were a Sergeant or above you couldn't get out on the working parties.'

What was your routine in the hut after work?

'We started getting these books and that, a few libraries, used to read them. We made a darts board. We used to make cards, we made packs of cards out of cardboard. And then, after a while, we started getting things from the Red Cross. Got a little flutina. I used to play that. Got an accordion. There was three or four of them used to try and play. One of themů' Laughs. 'But it used to be terrible in the lager, the bloody noise! Some of them hadn't a clue! There was one of the lads, a big tall lad.' Possibly called Ray Smith. 'He got some music as well, some of these music books, like school books, and they had all these little folk songs in. Well, he could read [music] and play and we learnt a lot. I learnt a few songs, old German songs. Aye, he used to play it all right, but there another two or three was always trying to play it. In fact we had a little concert party at the end, put on a show. I used to play the flutina and I had a quartet going, singing.'

Would they be on the photo?

'Aye, they'd be on it. I used to teach them these songs. We used to get these songs out of the Red Cross, I forget now

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