Marian Wood, nee Burford

My mother was one of five siblings born between 1897 and 1910.  Her eldest brother was just old enough to be in service in WW1. He returned to civilian life at the end of the war suffering from shell shock. My mother said he had a complete change of character, as prior to the war as the eldest of five of them, he had been quite a strong but pleasant character, and afterwards was docile. To his nieces and nephews he was always gentle and liked.  Both he and my father’s eldest brother survived the war, but maintained a silence about their experiences once it was over.

I remember rationing in World War 2.  My childless aunts and uncles used to swap their sugar coupons for other food coupons with my mother, so that we children might benefit. In our house no-one took sugar in their drinks anyway. Mum used the gained sugar in her baking with dried eggs and milk, for our rare cake treats. When given a banana and a plum at the age of eight or so, we children had to be shown how to eat them. The Co-op was well used by us. I remember the queues and our number, 27163, which we quoted at each purchase. All of the family had to know this number as it gained us our ‘divvy’ (dividend). We children used to test each other in the queue with any friends who happened to be there.

We went to Barton Fair annually and it was considered to be the event of the year. We had to sacrifice our shared weekly treat (a two ounce bar of chocolate between the two of us) for a few weeks prior to the fair, so that we had some pennies to spend there.

I started my library career at Brunswick Road. Looking back, the time I spent in the City Library was very happy. The staff and the public were lovely, and I am still in touch with a few friends from there although I left in 1965!

I remember a lot of bits and pieces from way back, but much too much to ramble on about….so I hope this helps.

You can find further memories submitted by Marian here.

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