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WW2 Bombing in Yardley Brum


master brummie
I read that diary years ago and wondered how a child who was four years old in 1939 could keep a diary for that year with so much detail. So is it a diary or is it a retrospective account from memory?

I was a war child and was in our house when a bomb hit it. I felt the blast of a nearby high explosive bomb, spent many nights in air-raid shelters, but not in Yardley so I won't mention it in this thread.

I remember many of the wartime events mentioned in the diaries.


master brummie
Curious detail, a few contradictions and somewhat adult language for a five year old maybe. I was looked after for two years - from three to five years old by two schoolteachers (husband and wife). I remember quite a few things about my time there and I could read, write, tell the time and do many things by the time I went to permanent school at five years old. However, I doubt I could have written in that manner at that age.
However, I guess the jury is still out. ;)


Super Moderator
Staff member
I think there is little doubt that this diary is genuine. But in its original form it contains comments written by this young boy - AND further factual information, clearly added later and by the hand of someone much older (but presumably still the author himself). The difference between the two sets of comments is lost in transferring to a post here. It's all online: https://brianwilliams.org.uk/diary/1940.html

Fascinating reading, and most impressive for such a young lad. Wish I had tried to do the same thing!




master brummie
Mother in Law has lived in Yardley (near the Yew Tree) most of her life and remembers the raid in Vera Road. My husband's Step-Grandfather was a Policeman on duty at Hay Mill Police Station when houses in Gleneagles Road were completely demolished. This was 24th August 1940. On the 12 September 1940 he was on duty at Acocks Green Police Station and was called to Allcroft Road and found that 2 H.E bombs had exploded causing damage to three houses and that there was one fatal and one living casualty. He received a WW2 Civil Gallantry Award for his work during this time.