“Either you had to work for the Germans in Holland or you were transported to Germany. You had no choice...We made silk for the parachutes. It was shift work, from six ’til two and two ’til ten...You had your pass, to say you were allowed to go out after curfew...Some of the Dutch people, they didn’t know(they thought) you were collaborating.
“You couldn’t get anything to eat, you couldn’t buy vegetables. If you went to the farmers they didn’t want your money...it was worthless.
“My brother was forced labour in Germany. (he attempted to escape), once he got to the border they caught him. The second time he got through. He had to go underground...hiding in different places. We had 'Quislings' (collaborators) living next door...they reported that my brother was there and the Germans came. When they came into the house...my brother was lying underneath the bed with a long box in front of it, so they couldn’t see him. After that he had to go...
“(In 1944, when Nijmegen was liberated)...we could see the parachutes coming down...it was marvellous, but after that there was fighting in the streets. The people next door who had collaborated...they were first with the Dutch flag hanging out...”
“I was conscripted, at that time you had to go in when you were twenty one...first you had to do your training and then we were on bridging, demolitions, mine clearing, road making, all manner of jobs.
“(In 1944) I went across from Newhaven. We were under canvas there until zero hour. When we did finally go, we had to wade ashore...June the 12th we went...I went right up through France, Belgium and Holland.
“Nijmegen is only ten miles from Arnham. The Germans were still in Arnham, but Nijmegen was liberated. We had seven months shelling.
“We met at a dance...(we got married) more or less straight away. We had to wait for permission, a couple of months...Anything I got in the food line I used to take to her house...we got all our bits and pieces for coal, for the wedding...”