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Wartime Farm



  • My late father was raised in a children's home in the 30's - a cruel and unforgiving environment - he and another boy ran away aged 8 and lived off the land sleeping in an overturned boat, they managed more than 2 weeks before they were caught by a bobby whilst scrumping apples. When he was 12 in 1940 he was moved to a farm in Cambridge where he remembered working with the horses and watching the dog fights in the sky above. Having enough food to eat and genuine affection from the farmer and his wife I believe they were the happiest days of his life.

  • Oh, your making me feel guilty.image

     I once likened Frank to our very own Uncle Albert, during the 'old Beeb days.....thankfully he  gracefully accepted it with good grace and joined in the ensuing banter.

    I, like many others have always admired & respected his missives....long may they continue.


  • pr1mr0sepr1mr0se Posts: 1,178

    David - don't feel guilty!  Banter is one thing - Frank knows only too well the poster(s) to whom I refer.  And that's not you! 

    Frank - if you're out there (and I bet you are) you are a valued poster, whose messages are relished by many.  Mind you, the mental image of Uncle Albert from David may be confusing me . . . . . image

  • Muvs, your father was not alone I saw children form homes where the father could not get work, they were hard times, they came to school in plimsolls with cardboard for soles and probably ate one hot meal a week if lucky.
    The war changed that as people got back in work so for many the war years were good years, strange to say but so very true, war was not all hell.
    David, no need to whip yourself with branches, the war years were never mentioned by people because they wanted to forget, BBC started it all with their 2001 search for peoples war. It opened flood gates for many old stagers who had lived with baggage all their lives (no counsellors back then it was get on with it) but also for children and grandchildren there was a sudden interest, it was really my grand children who started me off with questionnaire from school. then my children saying we know absolutely nothing about you and mum before we were born, well no, to them parents came in cans with open only to bring up children was what they thought and expected.
    As for Uncle Albert, we all had one, the old chap sitting in the corner throwing in the odd remark which when we thought about it made all the sense in the world.
    I found as I went up in rank I had to be dad to young lads out of their comfort zone who looked to you for direction, then civvy street in charge of people, making the decisions solving the problems and looking after their welfare, I often felt like Uncle Albert, the problem was I did not have one, the buck stopped with me.
    Ok I promise no more.

  • pr1mr0sepr1mr0se Posts: 1,178

    Frank - break that promise of "no more".  Please.  We want to hear your input.  And for the record - you are not "Uncle Albert" of the boards!  Honest!

  • I'm almost sure the Fordson tractor being used in the series is the E27N Major modal, in which case it wasn't intrduced until just after the war:



  • None of those tractors are war time David, the Fordson is 1960's, The little grey Fergy next to it is 1950.'s The wartime Fordson did not have tyres but Latice frame wheels with an iron tyre that had teeth for pulling through the earth, the front wheels were iron and with direct steering, no springing a pig to drive. The tractor seat was iron a bit bottom shaped on a sort of leaf spring and that was the only sprung bit on it, a bag of straw came in handy. The radiator was a square cast iron top tank and cast iron bottom tank with the normal block in between. No thermostat and they boiled like mad when working on a hot day, you could get a funnel shaped tank that screwed in the radiator cap and it acted as an expansion tank also holding more water. There was no grill as shown.
    Some of the larger farms got a John Brown Tractor as used by the RAF with sweeping wings, it was much lower and had a padded seat for two people.
    There was an odd looking tractor that had a two cylinder diesel engine, I never had anything to do with it but it seemed to do the job.


  • Frank, I agree the tractors on display outside the farm gate seem to be of post war vintage, although the Fordson E27N driven by Ruth was first introduced in 1945....I accept what you say about earlier modals.

    Incidentally, I used to own a Ferguson T20 (little grey Fergie) in the mid-fifties when I ran a medium sized poultry farm..... hatchery, to be precise.

  • pr1mr0sepr1mr0se Posts: 1,178

    It must be irksome to see the "wrong" machinery - but, being charitable to the production team, I guess they're trying to get the flavour of the time across. 

    OH is very much "in" to steam trains - and is highly critical of the wrong engine/livery etc in films.  To the uninitiated, it doesn't make any difference (as I feel constrained to point out to him each time he complains image)

    I'm enjoying the series, though, but the thing that does irritate is the very poor editing:  one shot shows trees in full leaf, and yet the next minute, it seems, we are being told that Christmas is approaching, and the background changes.  I know things are put together after a lot of filming - but the "filler" shots are unnecessary imo and the swiftly changing seasons irritates me.  (But I am still enjoying it!)

  • You're always the voice of reason, SV. Frank & myself more or less agreed (upthread) not to nit- pick about the series, though (as you observe) some inaccuracies tend to grate.

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