Personal History

Bill Hawkins

Introduction

Well, they say that there is a book  inside everyone, and while I suspect that I'll never actually write one, this is probably the nearest I will get. Friends and family also say, when listening to stories told by the older generation about their younger days, that they should be written down. This website is my effort at writing down my own stories and reminiscenses from my earliest childhood to the time I took my O levels at the age of fifteen. I will also include what I can remenber about my parents life before I came along. So, if anyone out there should somehow stumble across this website, then I hope you will enjoy it. I know that I will enjoy preparing it.

 

Beginnings

My  parents were Bill Hawkins, born  26/02/1919 in Moxley, West Midlands, and  Sadie Younger, born 07/12/1920 in Glanton, Northumberland. My father's family tree can be traced back to the late 18th century with the birth of Joseph Hawkins, a butcher from a small village near Stafford. My mother's line can be traced back to a similar time with ancestors from small villages in Northumberland. For further details of these family trees please see the appendix at the end of this website.

It was the second world war which brought about their meeting. Mother had been a nurse near London for the first part of the war, returning to Northumberland towards the end. Father was called up in 1939. He had not long been working for his uncle, Mr. F.W.Collins, a local undertaker. His military training took place at Hereford and he was eventually posted to Northumberland to guard the coast! If only the Germans had known how few troops were there! He did not see active service in the true sense of the phrase as he was not passed as A1 fit - he had limited sight in his left eye, and so did not go to Germany until the war was virtually over.

It was at Druridge Bay that he met my mother. I have only recently discovered how they met, courtesy of my Aunt Lily! Apparently when father was posted to Northumberland there were no barracks available, so the few soldiers who were there were billeted with local families. Father stayed with the Younger family, and so met my mother.They were married in October 1944, and I arrived almost nine months later in June 1945.

 

 My parents wedding in October 1944. My Grandmother Hetty Hawkins is on the extreme left. Next to her is an unknown lady, and then my Grandfather William Joseph Hawkins. Then of course are my father and mother, and behind and between them my Uncle Frank Hawkins, who was the Best Man. To the right of my mother is her brother, Dick Younger, then another unknown lady and then my other grandparents, Henry and Sarah Younger.

 

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