War babies of Carr Green school

Carr Green School photograph taken by Miss E Bottomley - September 6, 1948.
Carr Green School photograph taken by Miss E Bottomley - September 6, 1948.

Thanks to Richard Gannon of Fixby who sent his old school photograph. This was taken on the 6th September 1948 by Miss E Bottomley in the fields between Chapel Croft and Carr Green Lane - a clue to which school Richard and his friends went, it was Carr Green School of course.

At the time Richard says the children would be 8 years old, so those still around will all be in their early 70s. All born at the start of World War Two, they will have seen fathers, uncles and older brothers going off to war.

It must have been strange when your dad did come home and when he’d left you were but a babe in arms and on his return your mother announces ‘Oh this is your dad’ - a very strange if not difficult time for these and many more children of the same age.

Behind the children the properties look like the old prefabricated houses which we all simply called the prefabs. Some of these children or their relatives may have lived there.

In the year they were born they would not have been aware that butter, sugar, bacon, meat and tea had been put on ration in the January or that the evacuation of Dunkirk had taken place between the May and June. It would have been unlikely either that whilst laying in their prams looking up into the sky they would have noticed three Spitfires appearing in the skies over Brighouse in aid of raising money for Brighouse’s contribution to the ‘Buy a Spitfire’ effort. Attending a school in Rastrick they would not have noticed or felt the vibration of the bombs being dropped in the Walterclough Valley either.

Gradually as they got older they would have noticed small and subtle changes. In the early post war years only 14,500 households in the UK had a television, I wonder if any of these children had one. Did they know anyone other than perhaps the local doctor who had a motor car and these children would be 14 before the end of petrol rationing was announced?

Perhaps in the June of 1948 three months before this photograph was taken they might have been taken into town to attend the Brighouse Civic Week a very large community event. They might have watched a certain Miss Marie Coates a student at Brighouse Girls Grammar School being crowned by Miss Margaret Richards the Rose Queen as the first Safety First Queen.

Its 65 years since this photograph was taken and as these children now think and look back at the changes they have witnessed over those years. The world has moved on and advanced so quickly you can’t imagine what advancement there will be over the same period perhaps for their grandchildren or even great grandchildren.