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Saturday, January 14, 2017

the day that winnie came to town

 Happy New Year Sepians! This is my first post of 2017
See other posts
  here.
 
my Dad (top right)

 I was sat in the sauna at Halifax swimming pool last Tuesday morning.
We got talking about Polish Immigrants to England.
I told them how my dad was Polish.
How ,during WW2 he was based in Scotland.How he was in the Parachute Regiment  of the Free Polish Air Force.How he flew with the RAF in Battle_of_Arnhem.....
About how he defeated Hitler practically single handed !
(Incidently ,my Uncle Gordon was a pilot in the RAF .He was shot down ,and spent 3 years in a fascist prisoner-of-war camp .So it goes.......)
I said how my   Dad  was demobbed but  couldnt return to Poland because he had abandoned  the Soviet Russian army at the begining of the  war and ,because of this ,was technically classed as a "deserter".So it goes......
In 1945 he & my Scottish mum & brother Zyg first stayed in a resettlement hostel near  "the moor" in Halifax in the building that is now the club for The Halifax Old Crossleyians
Dad,Zyg & Mum.

 In 1946  they got their own  place on Lord Street in Halifax  where I was born in 1952.

I told the blokes in the sauna this because I get fed up of hearing anti-Polish predudice & UKIP lies.To me, Nigel   Farage is  just another  Oswald_Mosley
( children! learn  your history...)
An old bloke in the sauna  box started telling me his story .He had been a  16 year old lad in 1945.
One day ,during that year's  general election campaign ,Winston Churchill came to speak.
Thousands turned  out.They packed the bottom  of Hanson  Lane, right into Georges Square.

At the time , the Bull pub was being constructed.
Exposed steel scaffolding was  all over the shop.
The chap in the sauna was stood right near where Churchill spoke.He could see him   clearly.
During Churchill's speech ,a bloke with only one leg ( a vet fromWW1 ?) moved gingerly along a high scaffold bar and took a seat  halfway along it.
One leg dangling.
 They all began to  listen to the  great war leader & prime minister wannabe 's   speech.
Halfway through Winnies talk ,the Vet shouted .
"Mr Churchill.Tell them about Gallipoli"
 Churchill ignored him and continued.
Then a  second time,louder ,the ex-solider cried
"Mr Churchill .Tell them about Gallipoli "
 Churchill  ignored  him   again .
A third time the man cried out.
But ,this time, Churchill turned and  whispered something to an aide stood next to him.
A few moments later two policeman inched across the scaffold .Somehow they removed  the man away....
He was taken   to Harrison Road Police Station to recieve some  sort of Caution.
So it goes.......
Read more about Churchill's failure at Gallipoli here :
For more background of Churchill's visit to The Calder Valley in 1945   you can read this report fromThe Halifax Courier:
http://www.halifaxcourier.co.uk/news/day-winnie-came-to-town-1-1897717
My thanks to Malcolm   Bull's Calderdale Companion for  two photos and  this    extra  text   
http://freepages.history.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~calderdalecompanion/m_4.html
My dad would have been 100 next month.So it goes........
A pair of bullets that collided in mid air at Gallipoli. Take that!

12 comments:

Wendy said...

That's quite the story-swapping in the sauna. Great photo to answer the prompt!

tony said...

Cheers Wendy. :)

ScotSue said...

I enjoyed reading your post and your family's Scottish links. I live in the village of Earlston in the Scottish Borders and a Polish Tank Regiment was stationed here during the war training for DDay. They involved themselves in the local,community, with the Polish Band playing at dances and fund raising events. General Eisenhower visited them in 1944. The Kings Own Scottish Borderers regiment too suffered heavy casualties at Gallipoli in the First World War.

tony said...

For a time my Dad was stationed in Fife.
By the way Sue , have you been to the museum in Carlise Castle which displays a lot of information about the Border Regiment?
It also has a lot of displays about the Borders & Poles in Arnhem
see my photos of the Museum

Mike Brubaker said...

We all need to remember history, but politicos need constant reminders on the mistakes less they repeat them. Unfortunately Fascists are good at ignoring history that doesn't fit their warped policies.

tony said...

Indeed Mike. History is a two-way street.

Kristin said...

Good to read your sepia post! I have been unable to come up with any that fit my mood lately.

tony said...

It's the first one for me for quite some time.

La Nightingail said...

That is a beautiful retouched with color picture of your Dad and Mom and brother. How lucky you are to have it. And your story was of much interest, as well. Thanks for sharing!

tony said...

Thank You XX

Helen Killeen Bauch McHargue said...

Great match for the prompt. Good thing Churchill couldn't have tweeted something out in response to the heckler. I wonder what advice he would pass along to the Donald.

tony said...

We Will Tweet Them On The Beaches......... ?