Patricia Pennington

Shelters and air raids

Patricia Pennington talks about air raids and taking shelter.

Shrapnel and doodlebugs

Patricia Pennington talks about shrapnel and doodlebugs.

Recollections of wartime childhood memories.

Childhood excitement

Born in 1937 Patricia was just a young child during the war but memories of wartime have remained with her. Living in Whitton with her parents air raids were part of daily life but as a young child she did not understand the meaning of war or the danger it brought, ‘To me it was tremendously exciting. I know my mother used to cry. I used to say, ‘Why are you crying? We’re in the shelter; if a bomb drops we’re fine’. And I totally believed that. So for me the war was quite good fun, most of it.’

A broken illusion

To escape the increasingly heavy air raids Patricia left Whitton with her mother to go to her grandparents in Hull. But upon arrival at Hull the illusion of safety was crushed:   

It had been bombed. There were no lights, no street lights anywhere. My mother had a torch and we were totally lost and we kept tripping into potholes. I can remember hanging onto my mother’s coat, you know, desperately hanging on to her while she was trying to find the way. Both of us crying, you know, cos my mother couldn’t believe it cos she thought she was gonna go somewhere where it was all safe and lovely, you know.

Whilst in Hull, Patricia and her mother received news from her father that the family home had been damaged in an air raid. At this time Patricia had contracted impetigo and was not able to return to Whitton with her mother, ‘I can remember crying very much because my mother left me up there’.

'I can almost feel it now, the fear when you heard the drone of this thing coming over'

The drone of the doodlebug

Patricia eventually returned to Whitton and experienced the V1s and V2s:

‘I have to say that’s the one thing of which I was frightened, nothing else frightened me but I did – I was frightened of the doodlebug and I can – I can almost feel it now, the fear when you heard the drone of this thing coming over and you prayed that it would just keep going.’


Interview with Patricia Pennington
Interview with Patricia Pennington (175k)
To read the full transcript of Patricia's interview please press the above link.

Shelters and air raids
Shelters and air raids (60k)
Transcript of audio clip with Patricia Pennington.

Shrapnel and doodlebugs
Shrapnel and doodlebugs (56k)
Transcript of audio clip with Patricia Pennington.

This page was added by Malin Lundin on 02/02/2012.