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Geoffrey's Story

I was eight years old at the time and lived with my father, mother and four year old brother at No.1 Evelyn Road.

We went to bed as usual and during the night the air raid siren went off as it often did in those days.  Up to that Saturday the German bombers had attacked Bristol and then when the "All Clear" sounded we returned to the house from the air raid shelter in the garden.

So we ran to the shelter but this time it was different.  There were a lot of explosions and then we could hear the sound of machine guns.  I asked my father, who was in the Home Guard but not on duty that night, what was happening.  "Oh"  he said, "that is our fighter planes attacking the German bombers".  I learned later that it was actually the raiders machine-gunning the firemen and civil defence workers.

All at once there were about five huge explosions very close at hand and once again I asked my father for an explanation.  He told me "That was a mobile anti-aircraft gun firing".  Of course, this was untrue, but it satisfied me at the time.  Later I realised that it was a "stick of bombs" which fell nearby, one of which fell near the Civil Defence HQ in Apsley Road and another hit a semi-detached house in Rosslyn Road, killing the occupants.

When the "All Clear" sounded we left the shelter to find that some of our windows were blown out, and I remember that we had to boil our water.

My father then had to go on duty with the Home Guard and deal with emergency supplies.

The next night, we left the house and went out into the country.

On Monday we walked into Bath and I remember passing Kingsmead Square.  It was still smouldering.


Number 1 Evelyn Road is at the Newbridge Hill end of the road.  It suffered what the City Engineer's report described as "minor damage".


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