during the war my father, Isaac Campbell, would take us fishing
to the River Severn in Shrewsbury.
"He was a great
fisherman and he made his own rods. He loved his eels but he didn't
believe in over-fishing.
"If he could
get a couple of eels for himself and a couple of small fish for
the cat, he was happy.
"I never caught
anything. My mother and I would go for walks or shopping in town.
"When we got
home my mother cleaned the eels and cooked them somehow in the frying
pan but I never knew how.
never had the eels; they were for dad and they were useful because
everything was rationed. We preferred cod.
"I was born
in Wolverhampton and grew up in Hartshorn Street, Bilston. We weren't
particularly well off but we were always well looked after. My dad
worked in the steel mills all his life.
"My uncle Frank
was away at the war and during the air raids I used to keep my auntie
company, sitting on the cellar steps. When it got really bad, my
dad would take us down to the shelter in the park.
"They had a
rule that if the air raids went on after midnight, you were allowed
an extra hour to sleep, so you didn't have to be in school until
there was a war on, I remember them as very happy days. The contrast
between being in the air-raid shelter at night and fishing peacefully
on the Saturdays was amazing.