Life around the Junction

1939-1944

By Daphne Hinman

Between the Clement Atlee's peace and the outbreak of war my father brought our 40 foot yacht from Portishead up to the Junction of the Stroudwater Canal.  As he edged the boat (Ulula) slowly into the canal there was a noise like a violin, it was the forestay stretching the main telephone wire link!!

He backed away and Ulula spent the war moored there by Davis's yard, and I worked as a volunteer in the City General Hospital kitchen.

AT the First Air Raid alarm, we were told to go into the Bridgeman's House (Mr Holder) and sit on the floor in a passage way.  Old Mrs Holder (a nervous lady) was going round with a cushion on her head.  'Oh! Mrs Hinman, I had a cushion for you, where did I put it?'

While living there my father formed a civil defence unit, 6 men, 1 rifle of the First War, 1 rifle, German, First War and several pieces of wood in the shape of a rifle and they marched up and down the boat yard!

My father (Charles Hinman) lived on the boat during the freeze up and managed to keep some warmth by a small coal fired stove.  His office was in Gloucester Docks. His job was to organize all the petrol barges to bring petrol from Avonmouth to the midlands.(That was before there was a pipe line.)

In those days there were a few small barges that still traded up to Stroud, one was the River King.  They belonged to the Butt family of Dunstalls Farm. My Father called them Butts Navy !!!

This page was added by Iris Capps on 26/06/2009.

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