This letter from Mrs May Taylor, of South Shields, is about being evacuated to Kendal during the Second World War. It appeared in The Westmorland Gazette on September 15, 1989

I REMEMBER the 8th of September as if it were yesterday. We all assembled in school in South Shields.

All we kids had was a pillowcase with all our belongings in it, which was not much, and our gas masks over our shoulders.

We were marched to the station, thinking we were going on holiday.

When we arrived in Kendal we were taken to a hall.

My sister was six, I was eight and my brother was ten. He was settled quickly with a Mrs Hooten in Park Street but my sister, Joan and I seemed to be in the hall forever.

A number of us were taken around a few houses and finally came to Mr and Mrs Hutton in Union Street, who took us in. They were wonderful.

By then, it was about five o’clock. We were given a good meal and a wash and then they took us all around their friends and family.

We were given money by one and another and collected about £2 each – a lot of money in those days.

By Saturday afternoon, we had the complete rig-out and felt great.

We saw our parents about four times and never went home once in the five years.

Aunt Mary, Mrs Hutton, treasured a letter from the Queen thanking her for having us.