Wartime memories of an air raid

Have your say

IT WAS Saturday, April 3, 1943, and I had been on an errand for my mum to a shop in Crown Street, Old Town, Eastbourne.

As was often the case there had been air raid sirens sounding, warning of a possible air raid.

When I was leaving the shop the ‘imminent danger’ warning was sounded (the ‘cuckoo’).

I was asked if I wanted to go into the shop’s cellar to shelter. I lived only a little way away in Motcombe Road, so I jumped on my bike and set off.

I had got as far as Motcombe Gardens when I saw some Focke-Wulf 190’s with bombs hanging underneath them coming over the Downs towards the town.

Jumping off my bike I lay in the gutter, (advised to be a safer place).

At about the same time Bob Oliver, a form-mate at the Grammar School had decided to shelter by a wall at the Saffrons sportsground.

He saw Peter Horton, also in our form at school, go hurrying by on his bike. He went down South Street.

On Monday morning at school, I saw the next desk to mine was empty. We were told that Peter Horton had been killed in the air raid on Saturday.

That Saturday a surface shelter in Spencer Road just off South Street had been hit by a bomb. Peter’s bike was found nearby. Nothing was found of Peter, he was 12 at the time.

On that day the school secretary Miss Doris Hardwick was killed by another bomb in the Bourne Street area.


Leyland Road, Pevensey Bay

Back to the top of the page