To mark this year's Remembrance Day, Meallmore care homes across Scotland paid their respects to those who have sadly lost their lives during conflict. Our homes created beautiful poppy displays and some residents even talked about wartime memories.
One resident at Greenan Manor has been sharing a remarkable account of surviving the infamous Clydebank Blitz in March 1941.
Lorna Graham recalls how she and her family endured one of Scotland’s most devastating air raids of WWII.
Lorna was only nine years old when she took refuge with her family in an Anderson shelter for two days whilst Luftwaffe relentlessly bombed the areas of Clydebank and Glasgow. She recalls that it was her father’s knowledge of building shelters in the trenches during WWI that kept her family safe during the air raid.
Lorna (R) with her sister, Anne (L)
Her father Andrew, an engineer, had previously fought in the Battle of the Somme during WWI. He was concerned about the instructions given by the Ministry of Defence on the construction of the new Anderson shelter. He dug the base of the shelter much deeper every day to ensure it matched the measurements of the former WWI shelter. Lorna states: “My father’s actions saved the lives of our family.”
When Lorna and her family eventually emerged from the shelter, they found their home was one of many that had been completely destroyed along with all of their possessions. Following the devastation, they were all evacuated to a farm in Ayrshire for safety.
Over two nights (13-14 and 14-15) March 1941, Luftwaffe targeted industrial sites along Clydeside. Glasgow suffered the most fatalities, but relative to its population, Clydebank was the worst affected.
When Lorna was asked if the sound of the bombing had any lasting effect on her mental health, Lorna responded with “No, not at all, because when we were hiding in the Anderson shelter my parents continually assured myself and my sister Anne to not be afraid. They told us that it was just a great adventure.”
Elaine Hughes, Care Home Manager at Greenan Manor, commented:
“Lorna is a much-loved resident here at Greenan Manor, and her courage to share this remarkable story with us is admirable. It is important we keep telling these stories to educate future generations of these events, and to pay respects to those who endured this hardship.”