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(C) The Living Memory Association Edinburgh 2002 - 2016
On Sunday morning at 11 o’clock Chamberlain said war had been declared. I was in my mother’s house. It was expected. We all expected to be bombed immediately. I was 25. We had an Anderson Shelter in the back garden. My father had to dig and put it in. One time my sister went down in the dark and sat on a cat!
I remember clearly the night that the Clyde was bombed because the planes were all going over but they never stopped here. We expected any minute that the planes would start dropping bombs near here but, thank goodness, they didn’t. They all went over to Clydebank. You didn’t get much meat or sugar during the war. And clothing was rationed. And petrol.
My sister and I joined the ARP, the air-raids precautions, and we had to go to the post, if there was an air-raid, which was in St Cuthbert’s School at Slateford.
I volunteered for gas training rather than first aid – as I was sure I would kill someone rather than cure them. We were trained on bandaging and splints. I was not confident about my first aid. That was one reason that I joined the forces because I wanted to get away from this ARP. Unfortunately, when I joined the forces the first thing we had to do was first aid.
Vi in her WAAFs uniform