Story that was told to me as a youngster (General)

by Dlg @, Wednesday, September 27, 2017, 23:39 (360 days ago)

I was wondering if anyone on here who comes from the forest has ever heard this story about something that happened in the war ? I was a very young child and my nan told me that there was a bus and it was filled with people when all of a sudden a bomb went off in front of it , the people that was on the bus was found in the same seats sat upright but unfortunately all dead and just how they were before the bomb went off, like just sat there ....?? I found this story quite unbelievable but because my nan told me I was wondering if this is true? Thank you for any information also .... I was wondering there must be more of my greatgrans Whittington family in the forest that are still around because she must have had brothers and sisters that have had children etc... are there not any of them on here? Thanks for any information

Story that was told to me as a youngster - WW2 bombing.

by Jefff @, West London, Middlesex, Thursday, September 28, 2017, 01:45 (360 days ago) @ Dlg

Hi Dlg,
I'm no expert but am always interested by wartime stories such as this one. In peacetime one source of info would be to search the local newspapers, either the DF Mercury at Cinderford library or the Glos Citizen etc from the internet. However, during wartime events like this wouldn't have been reported due to censorship. I can point you to a couple of my older posts which you will hopefully find of interest; this first link should take you to 2 raids on the Gloster Aircraft Factory at Brockworth, a great many Foresters worked in that neighbourhood's arms factories during the war. Perhaps your story relates to the case where Mrs Davies died when her bus received a direct hit ?. Maybe the actual facts were the other occupants didn't die in their seats, but were found still in their seats stiff with shock, as if dead... ??. Not doubting your Nan or your memory, but sometimes things do get confused with time. Full details would not have been reported in the papers, so Humphrey Phelps' excellent book relies on personal recollections such as yours.

please see this post
and this followup post

This next link relates to the important Ediswan Cable works at Lydbrook which was also bombed during WW2. The post also includes a link to the Sungreen site which tells about one such raid, altho' no mention of any casualties. As you can see from my posts my dad was a teenager living in Lydbrook during the War and travelled to GAC etc regularly thro' his work on Edwards' buses. He passed away 25 years ago but as far as I recall he never told me about such a horrific event, but that doesn't mean it never happened.

I do hope this helps you. It may be a little late now as most witnesses of the time are no longer with us, but if you were to write an open letter to the local newspapers the editor might well print it for you, and maybe yield more information.

Story that was told to me as a youngster - WW2 bombing.

by Dlg @, Thursday, September 28, 2017, 22:51 (359 days ago) @ Jefff

Hi Jeff , thank you for your reply , it might be the story of Mrs Davies ... it does ring a bell , I did not believe it but now you have suggested a story that was very similar to the my nan told me , I reckon this is the same story , my nan told me many stories about the forest and her life there , the struggle she had bringing up her children , she had to carry bags of coals while she was heavily pregnant over many hills , she had a very hard life , nan and gramp rented a home off of their mother and my Gramp won one pound on the pools, because my gramp would not buy the home from the parents the family had to split up and my nan and gramp with seven children got thrown out onto the street , my nan had to live in a tin hut with some of the children and the rest went to live here in stonehouse at the spa pub with my gramps family , many years before my mum passed away she wanted me to write a story telling her family life and how hard it was . My nan loved the forest it was her home . :)

Story that was told to me as a youngster

by alison2 @, Thursday, September 28, 2017, 11:58 (359 days ago) @ Dlg

I used to work with a lady who during the War used to travel from lydney by Bus to work at GAC Gloucester and she did tell us a story about a bomb falling one day in to the Severn as they were travelling towards Gloucester. The A48 Road which is the route they took is in places very close to the Severn, so it could of been fairly close to them, but, as far as I can Recall she never mentioned Deaths or injuries.

Story that was told to me as a youngster

by MPGriffiths @, Thursday, September 28, 2017, 12:41 (359 days ago) @ alison2

BBC : WW2 People's War - Firefighting at the Gloster Aircraft Company

has an article on behalf of : Jim WYATT who lived in the Forest of Dean in his early days and went to the school which is now Dean Magna, his early life, left school and worked the the local Vicar for about six months and then had a job on a farm - and joined after more than six months battle through red tape and at 16 and a half years was a cadet as a Firefighter.

Easter 1942 there was a raid on Gloster Aircraft and bombs dropped on the car park which was alongside the fire station and many people were killed.

He goes on to say, people think the fire service was made up of Green Goddesses during the war - but that's not true. It was very difficult at the beginning of the war to get appliances. Cars were adapted to take two bars with trailer pumps and one of the biggest problems was that turntable ladders were made across the channel in France and of course when war broke out that supply dried right up and we had to develop our own ladders in this country.

Mentions other bombings January 2 in Napier Street and Montpellier


So Jim WYATT around c1922/23/26 Forest of Dean

? Alfred James WYATT born Cinderford

Story that was told to me as a youngster

by Jefff @, West London, Middlesex, Thursday, September 28, 2017, 13:37 (359 days ago) @ MPGriffiths

Hi M, thanks for that.
It's hidden away somewhat within the chain of links, for which I apologise, my post included a mention of Jim's story. I suggested he was an Abenhall man as that was the old name for his secondary school until it was renamed Dene Magna c1985, it's at Mitcheldean. I'm unsure if he was from Cinderford as in theory he would therefore have attended Double View Secondary school, Abenhall served the Ruardean,Drybrook and Mitcheldean area, although of course his BMDs could easily place him just up the road in Cinderford.

His full article can be found here

Hope this helps, J.

Story that was told to me as a youngster

by Dlg @, Thursday, September 28, 2017, 23:00 (359 days ago) @ MPGriffiths

Thank you for your very interesting story Mr Griffiths , I think this type of history needs to be told these brave people needs to be remembered in every way / soldiers / survivors / heroes etc :)

Story that was told to me as a youngster, Gloucester in WW2

by Jefff @, West London, Middlesex, Thursday, September 28, 2017, 14:10 (359 days ago) @ alison2

My immediate thought here is that maybe in this instance they were targeting Gloucester Docks, but I can find no direct reference to that in the little "research" I've just done. Aside of the actual Docks and their warehouses, the neighbouring area of High Orchard included many timber yards and also the heavy engineering works of the Carriage & Wagon works and Fielding and Platt. All would seem to be attractive targets, but the excellent Fielding and Platt website says they were never hit. During WW2 the area would have been a hive of industry and looking much like it did in this 1970s photo of the F&P works.

In fact considering the raids that definitely did take place on the various aircraft factories between Gloucester & Cheltenham, it seems that Gloucester city itself got-off relatively lightly, perhaps because it was a more difficult and smaller target than the likes of Bristol and Cardiff. Officially speaking
"Gloucester suffered little bomb damage during the Second World War, the worst air raid destroying 18 houses and a mission church in the Millbrook Street area in 1941."

Millbrook Street is near Napier Street mentioned by Jim Wyatt, they're only 1/2 mile east of the docks. It was normal practice in WW2 for bombers to navigate following visible landmarks such as railway lines and especially rivers and canals, as these were easily seen in moonlight, I suspect the raids over Gloucester were routed from the Severn estuary and up the river. Even ignoring the fact these raids were at night, the chance of bombs hitting their intended target were fairly slim for both sides during the early years of WW2 before radar guidance was introduced, and even then within 1/2 a mile would been considered very accurate.
Furthermore, the area around Gloucester was very well defended with guns, floodlights etc. Across Britain decoy sites were created using lights and brazier fires, to fool the bombers into thinking they were attacking their intended target, and not some empty countryside a few miles away. One such site was at Longney, down the Severn, which suggests they were indeed approaching Gloucester from the Severn estuary.

This forum thread gives some good insights into the bombing around Gloucester, and includes a newspaper photo of the Millbrook Street bombing.

Some of the raids mentioned in these threads were not large scale "Blitzs" as such, but one or two aircraft on surprise raids, or even "accidental" raids where stragglers returning home from other targets to the west were jettisoning any unused bombs to aid climbing over the hills around Gloster.

Story that was told to me as a youngster

by Dlg @, Thursday, September 28, 2017, 22:54 (359 days ago) @ alison2

Thank you Alison for your reply , very interesting stories , my nan used to tell me loads :)

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