Thursday, December 8, 2011

September 28 - October 4, 1939

It was business as usual at Swindon Magistrates Courts this week. Oliver George William Isadore Turner was remanded in cutody for a week after breaking into the home of Reginald Frederick Beale at 14 Handel Street in the early hours of Tuesday September 26. Accused of breaking and entering the premises with intent to steal, Turner claimed that he was 'hungry and thirsty.'

"Beer is going to cost you more in the future and you will not be able to get so much," Mr A.E. Withy, magistrate's clerk at Swindon Borough Police Court warned Ernest William Scutts of 2 Avon Street. According to Constable Watchman, Scutts staggered and fell and was unable to rise without assistance when he was arrested in Newport Street. Scutts, who pleaded guilty to being drunk, said it was more than 20 years since he last appeared in court and he hoped it would be another 20 years before he came again.

Mrs Caroline Tylee was made the licensee of the Sun Inn at Coate in an unusual move by Swindon magistrates. Mrs Tylee's husband had been in the process of transferring from steward at the Bath Road (Swindon) Club to licensee at the Sun Inn when he was called up for military service.

Questioned about her experience, Mrs Tylee said she had assisted her husband at the Bath Road Club and gave the name of Mr J.W. Pooley as a reference. "You mustn't mention him," said Mr Withy, the Advertiser reported, "he happens to be the partner of the Clerk of the Court." Mrs Tylee was granted the licence on the condition it was transferred to her husband on his return.

And a heated discussion at the Stratton Parish Council Meeting followed matters arising over ARP provision at Upper Stratton. A decision was passed to write to Swindon Corporation asking them to expediate the erection of an ARP post. Councillor W. Townsend then brought up the issue of the ARP post at Lower Stratton.

"There are women stuck there doing their knitting, drawing £2 a week," he said. "It is an absolute disgrace. Someone has got to foot the bill. Their husbands are working in good jobs and drawing good pay. The whole scheme wants reorganising from top to bottom," the Advertiser reported.

Councillor s.C. Casson joined in the debate, stating that if having a post at Upper Stratton meant increasing the costs of ARP provision and 'particularly paying women wardens £2 a week,' he would strongly oppose it.


Friday September 29 was registration day in the UK. Around 65,000 enumerators were employed to collect the completed household schedules and issue the identity cards at the same time. All civilians, including children, were issued with an ID card and advised to carry them at all times. The buff coloured card (later issues were blue cards for adults and buff for children) included the holders name and address and crucially their registration number and was also used for food rationing purposes. 'If you neglect to register you may have difficulty in obtaining a ration book later,' Advertiser readers were advised.

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