House Warming on Mayflower Street

The week before last, we all headed down to Mayflower street, just behind Bubble HQ, we looked at the buildings on the street and set ourselves the task of imagining who might have populated the houses….

Then last week – we moved in!  Iris got hold of the Electoral Roll for 1939 and we focussed in on numbers 7-13. Having found out the names of the people that actually lived there, we formed little clusters of ihhabitants for each house, compromised of  family members of all ages and lodgers.  We spent a bit of time creating the relationships between these individuals and building up brief portraits of their characters.

Whilst we were keen to base these families on fact, we also wanted the license for these characters to be created through our own invention and ideas. For this reason, we kept the surnames of the individuals that lived in these houses and made up our own first names, based on their letters of our own names. So, for example – one of our participants, Lauren Rowley, becomes Rena Atkinson.

If you were at this session – please give us details of your new household. We want to build up our very own street!!  Let us know your number and who is living in your house. The Mayflower Street census has begun….

Back to Grandchildren of the Blitz

6 Responses

  1. Muhammed

    Number 8

    I think I’m beginning to immerse myself – in a Blitz atmosphere. Wednesday night I was listening to Vera Lynn, and last night I could feel myself slipping into a war-time world. Our number 8 family are trying to lead a normal life – but the siren arrives – we become victims – we rush to hide away. . . . We wrote down a few positive and negative character traits – I suppose characters from the Blitz period surely MUST have covered the full spectrum of human emotions/states of mind. My choice of positive/negative traits was energetic and nosey. A curious blend!

  2. Clu Webster

    My name is Clu Webster and I live in house 10 with my 11 year old son Drew.
    Our house has a blue front door and you can see lots of family photographs on the walls in the hall.
    Sadly my husband died so we have three lodgers in the house with us. They are all ladies in their mid twenties (just a bit younger than me) and they often sit around the table in the kitchen, listening to the wireless whilst I wash up.
    We use the cupboard under the stairs as a shelter when the air raid sirens sound. It’s very cramped with five of us but we make the best of it.

  3. Rena Atkinson

    Hello my Name is Rena Atkinson I have two lovely twin sons who are 11 named Axel and Leo Atkinson, their father, my husband has joined the army so he is away for a while. Also living with us is my sweet 9 year old niece Hatti Overy her father who is my brother is also in the Army, so I am at the moment her main guardian as her mum died when she was four.

    we live at number 12 Mayflower street and we have a bright red door, when you walk through the door you can see our coats and hats all hanging on pegs to the left and straight in front you can see into the kitchen and up the stairs, we have a lot of family pictures up and around. When people arrive at the house they say they can smell my baking flow through the house but I can just smell the coal and the dog. We also have a cat who makes so much noise in the kitchen as I think this is her favourite place, must be the warmth. we haven’t got much money but the most valuable object is my wedding ring encrusted with diamonds, I have never taken it off. We have a cupboard under the stairs which is our safe place when things go wrong, shall we say, to make it nicer I have put in a doll and marbles for the kids. I suppose we make do alright.

  4. Muhammad

    As Head of the house, (number 8) I should mention that our precious object was a valuable necklace (I’d given my wife) and we hid during raids in a Morrison shelter.

  5. Muhammad

    05/11/10: I adored meeting the ladies from the Blitz period – even saw some cool pics. The information film we made in our group (number 8 house) was supposed to send a clear message – about being truthful to older children, when talking about the Blitz as it was happening. Ella sought to add humour – and I loved it when the audience laughed whole-heartedly. I quite liked the films by the other groups – I suppose everyone wanted to display some form of realism. Wonder what Simon made of it all. . . . How many different takes on SHELTER will emerge in our next session?

  6. Muhammad

    Inhabitants of number 8 were usually the last to enter the underground. I, as head of the household, felt concerned about the safety of the children in my care. We made sure to carry all our necessary belongings and, in the shelter, found our nook. There we sat and whiled the time away – didn’t fall asleep, although it was late. Two of the children played with a ball (keys) – throwing it back and forth. I joined in later, after looking thru my notebook and checking the ration book. The children didn’t feel the raw fear that I felt, knowing that we were being blitzed. I looked up now and then worrying about our safety. The first time we went to the shelter I was more frightened. The next time, I tried to occupy myself. I was eager to connect with other groups, but that didn’t happen really.

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