- 8 Aug 2002 (Creation)
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Subjects covered include childhood memories, family life, schools and education, Second World War and village occupations. Places mentioned include Thurlton, Gorleston, Haddiscoe, Norton and Seething.
00:00-05:00 - Dan Warner (hereafter DW) introduces himself, mentioning his age at the start of the Second World War (6). He describes his father explaining his reasons for joining the Navy, and his activity during the war, mentioning the Sparrow's Nest, Lowestoft. He mentions his siblings, explaining how his eldest brother John joined the Territorial Army, based at Gorleston and became a Japanese prisoner of war. He recalls visiting John's fiancée, Pearl in Backchapel Lane, Gorleston, during the war, mentioning the flushing toilets. He compares his facilities at home in Thurlton, with those in Gorleston. He describes an area in Gorleston called 'Pop's Place' belonging to Mr Henderson where he played as a boy. He recalls talking to the men on the gun boats.
05:01-10:00 - DW continues talking about 'Pop's Place'. He describes travelling to Gorleston from Thurlton, mentioning the bus, the wooden bridge at Haddiscoe, attending the cinema. He mentions the effect of the war on trips to the cinema, telling an anecdote about a German plane attacking after they left the cinema. He describes his Christmases with the Hendersons in Gorleston and the first book he received at 8. He describes Thurlton mentioning bus services, telling an anecdote about walking from Haddiscoe in the rain and being taken home by an army convoy. He talks about shortages resulting from the war and having a happy childhood.
10:01-15:00 - DW talks about being active in his youth, mentioning games and the meadows in Thurlton. He describes playing 'commandos', mentioning the dykes and the swimming costumes his mother made from old jumpers. The interviewer mentions DW's father, and DW talks about his father's service in the Navy and the strain on his mother, mentioning his other brother's military service. He mentions the birth of his younger sister, Pearl having not realised his mother was pregnant. The interviewer mentions gas masks and DW describes attending Norton Chapel Sunday school and having gas practices, mentioning the effects of tear gas and the home guard.
15:01-20:00 - DW continues talking about the home guard, telling an anecdote about causing them to fall into a ditch. He mentions his brother Bobby who was in the home guard, recalling an occasion when his mother refused to let him leave for a German invasion because he had to be up early. The interviewer asks if there was fear of a German invasion, DW explains there was and how this affected their lives. He tells an anecdote about lightening hitting his house, injuring his mother and his fear. He describes his relationship with his mother and their lack of affection. The interviewer and DW discuss food rationing.
20:01-25:00 - DW recalls his mother crying due to lack of food, mentioning poverty. He describes his local school mistress, his family receiving shoes donated from North America, and his school mistress's humiliation of them. The interviewer mentions class distinction and DW attempts to reason why she treated them so badly, mentioning caning. The interviewer asks about his school and DW describes it, and the reaction to an air raid warning. He mentions Norton School, telling an anecdote about it being machine gunned.
25:01-30:00 - DW continues telling the anecdote about Norton School being machine gunned, describing what he saw from his window. He recalls the windows exploding after landmines landed at Pockthorpe near Raveningham. The interviewer asks about landmines and DW explains that the craters are still present. He tells an anecdote about a home guard demonstration of spigot mortars at a fete in Thompson's Meadow, Norton which destroyed chicken runs.
30:01-35:00 - DW recalls his brother Bob being summoned to a supposed German invasion and finding it was a loose herd of bullocks. DW recalls the late return of American planes in 1944 under fire from German planes. He mentions the American military drinking in the Queen's Head, Thurlton, and being given sweets. He tells an anecdote about visiting Seething aerodrome without knowing where he was going.
35:01-40:00 - DW continues telling the anecdote, mentioning carrying two lady's suitcases, the policeman guarding the aerodrome, being shown around and being given medical supplies and food. He recalls setting fire to flares and splitting canon shells. The interviewer recalls shooting rifles into a hole. DW mentions 'Pop' Henderson throwing unexploded incendiary bombs over their garden wall.
40:01-45:00 - DW mentions his neighbour, a special constable, keeping incendiary bombs on top of his shed. He remembers a flying fortress crashing on Haddiscoe Marshes, which he suggests is disputed. He mentions finding debris including a belt of ammunition and the policeman's reaction to this. He mentions a Wellington Bomber landing on Yarmouth Road and a flying fortress crashing near Raveningham hall.
45:01-50:00 - DW recalls entering a crashing flying fortress and taking sweets, food and a gun, which was handed in during an amnesty. He mentions the doodlebug, flying bombs. They discuss planes going off course. DW talks about poaching to supplement rations, mentioning pheasants and water hens [moorhens]. The interviewer mentions eating seeds and plants and DW mentions a conversation with a woman about ducks at Upton Dyke, and the importance of animals as food.
50:01-55:00 - DW talks about helping on farms, mentioning an ex soldier called Harry Hammond who commanded respect from the local children. He mentions joining the Navy, and drinking with Harry at the Queen's Head while at home on leave. They discuss respect as inbuilt. DW mentions his reaction to the war as a child.
55:01-1:00:00 - DW mentions some evacuees who lived next door, describes his grandmother, a district nurse in Norton and mentions Sunday School. He wonders how his mother coped during the War. The interviewer asks about DW's father's return after the war. DW explains that his father returned home occasionally during the war, and describes his mother as a single parent. He recalls swimming and fishing at Reedham and the Chet. He mentions living on College Road, Thurlton and his mother watching out of the window. The interviewer asks DW how often he travels and DW mentions Yarmouth.
1:00:00 -1:05:00 - DW describes his family's tradition of fishing, mentions being brought up by his mother and conditions at home. They discuss class differences, and DW continues to describe his war experiences, mentioning toys and food. The interviewer mentions not knowing what desiccated coconut was. DW mentions discipline in childhood and the military and why national service wouldn't work in contemporary society. They discuss reminiscing with others. DW recalls having a bonfire the day the war ended, and putting up signs to welcome his family members home.
1:05:01-end - DW talks about his brother Bob and mentions the success of his brothers. He mentions his mother's lack of physical affection and explains how they showed their affection. They discuss the rise of physical affection in society as Americanized. DW explains that war created strong friendships, unlike friendships today.