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Latest posts by Palaisglide

Wartime Farm

Posted: 12/10/2012 at 20:31

Hello Ma, I was prepared to give them the benefit of working from old documents, they are now well off what it was really like. As you said when I saw the pitchforks I nealy yelled, "not for kids" where is H&S when you need it.
Labour shortage? when the farmers wanted some help the word went round like wild fire and the village turned out, grandma's to children would be stooking or raking, the men would be stacking and thatching the ricks we knew the ropes so needed no telling and always the impromptu party after it was done.
Ask people when we won the first land battle and they say Alamein Oct 1942, wrong it was the recapture of Abyssinia (Ethiopia) in late 1940 early 41, all us kids knew about it as troops pushed down from the Sudan and up from what is now Kenya but was East Africa and many of those Italians ended up within a mile of us and working for us quite happily too.
They moved to Canada and we got Germans, I think they were graded from Nazi down and our lot were the lowest risk. They too marched down the road under their own NCO's with the Soldier on his bike bringing up the rear, rifle across his shoulders, they broke off in groups into the market gardens farms and many other jobs, a couple worked in the Blacksmiths on the Green, one married the Daughter and stayed.
My friends Dad had a coal business and he had four Germans for bagging the coal and helping, they came up from the rail staithes at lunch time and ate with the family and me, with mother and dad on war work I spent a lot of time in his home.
We got to see them as normal men and would spend time writing English words for them to say and write, they would wash up after lunch then all go back to work then to camp at the end of day.
When they marched down to church on Sunday's there would be a flock of girls watching, there was a shortage of young fit men in our area. We still hated Germans who were fighting us and thought our Bombing was what they deserved, we had been bombed but those Germans just seemed different.


Wartime Farm

Posted: 12/10/2012 at 10:58

Sorry David, the gloves are off, there was either a massive North South divide in farming or else they are picking out the very odd happenings which probably did take place but not general events.
Straw Houses? the story went the two lads gave up their room for the rat catcher. They then built a straw house (I was expecting the three little pigs and the wolf at anytime) supposedly for two, roofing it with nettles after telling us straw was so plentiful it was almost a waste product!! so thatch with straw then.
They then moved in one narrow bed a table and chair complete with a naked flame lamp?? In a straw house? Those two either had strange sleeping habits or one found out the rat catcher was a woman and moved back, lusty lads those farmers.
We never poisoned rats where livestock abounded for obvious reason, we trapped them. On a Saturday afternoon you would see men walking into the Tan yard across the Green with wire cages and Terriers, us kids were barred, but knew that several rats were dropped into a concrete ring and a terrier dropped in then timed as to how long it took to kill the number of rats, big money would be laid and I suppose the men had a good afternoon of sport!! It certainly reduced the rat population.
Kids Camp? we had the usual two weeks potato picking and we went and picked potato's it was not a holiday. We would be picked up at school in open trucks boys and girls driven to a place of work and join with all the locals picking potato's in wire trugs and emptying the trugs into carts that came round as we picked. They would go to the yard be washed and or riddled then dried off for bagging. It was solid hard work and not all were up to it so they would be put to bagging under cover, the one time we were glad to get back to school.
No one has mentioned POW's yet we had them working around the village on all kinds of work from coal bag filling to small holdings, Italians who marched down the road under their own NCO's and a lone British soldier on a bike at the back rifle slung over his shoulder, and they sang, i never heard so much singing, they certainly boosted the choirs in all the local churches on a Sunday Morning.
We knew the Lindy Hop from films but here it was called the Jitter bug and brought initially by the Canadian Airmen stationed all around us RCAF, my mother worked at Goosepool as an electrician the largest of the bases. It became the Jive in my dancing years then changed name and form many times.
As to gingham flour or grain sacks? everything was rationed including animal feed so why did they need to advertise, sacks of all kinds were recycled until they fell apart.


What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 09/10/2012 at 13:18

Chris, thanks for asking, all OK giving it a rest is all.


What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 05/10/2012 at 15:07

happens a lot Jo, too much cake left so butter a dish jam the bottom put the cake on top in lumps, damp with milk and press down, make a custard and wait until warm.
I sometimes thinly slice apples into the bottom. No waste and the kids eat it but would not do it themselves, they sling it.
Strange afternoon, blue sky above but a ring of dark to black cloud around in a circle, I was in sunshine someone was getting rain.


What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 05/10/2012 at 11:57

Partly cloud say the box of Stockton on the Tees, well my part is blue sky although the cloudy bit seems to be Curling along the coast and in over our poster Rain, I keep telling her to move.
Nice and warm with it and up to now no night frost to kill anything off so still plenty of flowers on the late summer plants.
Are we having a late Indian summer I ask?


Wartime Farm

Posted: 05/10/2012 at 10:53

Root slicers in our neck of the woods had a big handle probably geared but it chopped the turnips easily.
Never saw a Lumber Jill, saw the handle of a cross cut saw though as we cut up wood the hard way.
British Restaurants were a godsend, when I started as an apprentice just before Christmas at a wage of 13/4 (thirteen shillings and four pence) the boss Arthur Brown told us lads we had to walk down to Alma Street and get a dinner in our one hour dinner break and gave us the money, four pence.
We would join the girls from the warehouse across the road and it was around seven minutes walk to St Johns Church Hall. The first time I went in was an eye opener being used to having school dinners I recognised the long tables and forms but the size of it took my breath away. A long counter with what seemed dozens of girl and women serving masses of workers from around the area. Twelve until one was workers only as most of the local firms did not have canteens and there were a lot of local firms on war work.
You would join a queue and in no time would be at the counter picking up a tray and cutlery, then it would be "Pie or Mince" Or Pie or Stew" you did get a choice but the pie would be either the mince or the stew with a crust on top then boiled potato's no time to mash, veg in season it was always fish on Fridays being on the coast had its advantages, and then the second choice, "Rice or steamed and custard" or "Pie and custard or Tapioca" there seemed to be no shortage of rice or tapioca, a pot of tea and you were off to a table. You were never asked what veg as it was just piled on and someone around would eat what you did not want, no problem with me I ate the lot. The noise was terrific as plates and cutlery rattled people talked music was played over the speaker system and it was all go, as fast as you cleared a plate the girls hovering whipped it away and then you were ushered out to let the next lot sit down. After the workers went then the public would be let in and although many closed some of those restaurants were still in business until the 1960's the one in the centre of Middlesbrough being one of them.
We handed over our fourpence being lads and the girls got to know us filling our plates, the men and women workers paid sixpence it was subsidised probably by the firms with no canteens. The food was plentifull and good and yes boiled onions or leeks were often served in winter although we did have plenty of cabbages and unlike today where the choice seems to be "white, Savoy, Red" we had a range of them and what we called winter greens so sprouts would figure a lot.
We had onions at home in the dark days of winter and Mother gave me strict instructions on cooking them. Peel skin off leaving top and tail, put in pan with water to cover bring to the boil leave a minute or so and empty out water, repeat this, now do it again but let onions simmer until soft, with a little bit of farmhouse butter they were delicious. Leeks went into puddings that were steamed or braised in stock, Dad would cut the head off a cabbage leaving the stalk and cut a cross on the top, that would grow our spring greens, same with sprouts.
We killed our own pigs on site and I never ever saw a policeman in attendance. We killed two a year and gave two to the Government, the pig club did the same. We had one local Bobby and a Sergeant would cycle in from Stockton a couple of times a week, they would both come and visit, a cup of tea some of mothers cake (we had butter and eggs so always had sugar from trading) and then leave with a bit of bacon in the pocket. That is how things were done in wartime and it seemed to run smoothly enough.
Norton was one big Market Garden serving the Towns around and I did see those big diggers they showed last night.


What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 04/10/2012 at 17:15

The plants I keep in the green house Jo are sunk in grit which seems to stop any frosting of the pot and it is that does the damage. The fleece cover is best if held of the leaves with a couple of sticks, a couple of pots upside down will do as well, the main problem is people over water in winter, the plants need be hardly damp.
Well done with the panels, is OH cooking the meal then?


What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 04/10/2012 at 12:50

Hello Jo, the green house was cleaned a couple of weeks past, the tomato's were done, a very poor crop this year but no disease.
Have not used bubble wrap for a long time now as it very rarely drops below freezing, the brick wall at the back takes in the heat and gives it back at night, it is surprising how warm it gets even when we cannot see the sun, one of the gains with a lean-to.
When we get warning I do put a fan with frost guard just in case and pop some fleece over things but then I am there to take it off every morning, the workers will not have time.


What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 04/10/2012 at 12:20

Stockton today sunny and clear, true little box, I drove along route 66 into Ironopolis as was, now shopalolacis with very poor parking so we all go to Teasdale instead.
Azure sky and lovely sunshine, crazy drivers, shoppers belting round beating you up with their trolleys why do I bother, probably because there is a need to eat?!!
Coming back it was so clear to the west you could make out Scar-gill High Moor across the Dales but also a bank of cloud heading South, probably on its way to Halifax?
Well it did stop me planting bulbs yesterday so some one elses turn, I should get a clear run at it after a light lunch.


What's the weather like in your area?

Posted: 03/10/2012 at 09:52

Stockton heavy rain says yon tha box, wrong, brilliant sunshine at 07:30 this morning mainly blue sky above with an odd drift of cloud now at 10:00 hours.
Have some bags of bulbs to plant up and may have a look around the nursery up the road, they do have good plants.


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