I originally set up this website to publicise my
mother's recollections of life in her
childhood in the early 1900s. Reactions were gratifying with hits of between
one and two thousand each day, and emails of thanks arriving from all over
the world. These repeatedly asked me to add my own recollections of my childhood a
generation later in the London suburbia of the 1940s and 50s, ie of World
War Two and its aftermath.
I resisted at first because I felt that there was
nothing unusual about what I could say, that surely it would be well-known
and that thousands of other people shared similar recollections. However, my
mother must have felt the same, but it did not deter her. There probably
were also hundreds, if not thousands, of people who could have written what
she did too - but they didn't - and her commitment has given a great deal of
pleasure and proved useful.
So I have been persuaded to add my own contributions. I have approached
the task by asking myself as I go about my everyday life in the early 21st
century what I am seeing around me now that is different from what I saw
and experienced in the 1940s and 50s - and accordingly what later
generations might like to know more about. My emphasis is on what living in
those times was like, specifically not a history book account of events or a manual for old equipment. Plenty
of other sites fulfil these purposes.
Although the 1940s and 50s were happy times for me as a child and teenager,
they were years of austerity as a result of the
Second World War. The
austerity lasted years after the war ended. So it seemed appropriate to use a somewhat
sombre design for the pages. This is in contrast to the more decorative style
of the pages on the Edwardian times of the early 1900s.
I am grateful to my cousins John Cole, Richard Cole and Anne Davey for permission
to include their recollections of the 1940s, particularly of life in World War
Two. The site has also benefited from various papers and receipts kept by my
father, which have stimulated me to find out and record something of their
I am also grateful for additional information and photographs that have come
in from visitors to this website. All contributing individuals are acknowledged
on the pages concerned.
Finally I am grateful to my husband
Neil Cryer for his ongoing interest and support.
There is advice on how to find your way around the recollections.
This website Join me in the 1900s is © Pat Cryer.