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World War 2 Two II WW2 WWII

The sirens wailed, warning the people of South East Wales that enemy aircraft were approaching. We, the Best family, lived in Bromfield Place, Penarth. My father Frank Best was ill in bed in the front room of our house. That made us decide to stay with him as a family and just wait. Sometime later we were showered with incendiary bombs. Our school - Albert Road - was across the road from our house, and we were watching it burning when there was a banging on the front door.

My mother, who had just been busy smothering bombs with sand, answered the door to find our neighbour in a panic. She shouted loud enough for my father to hear: "Frank, the stable is on fire and they can't get your horse out." My father jumped out of bed, put on a coat, forgot he was ill and went to rescue his faithful pal, his shire horse named - if I remember rightly - Prince. He got him out by coaxing him with his familiar voice.

Now the problems began. What to do with a very large, very frightened shire horse in the middle of an air raid. My cousin Bob Miller, who lived with us at the time along with his wife Nell and daughter Pauline, found the answer with the help of my father. A long length of rope was found and attached to Prince as best they could. Bob then stayed with the horse through the rest of the air raid. In the meantime a bucket chain was formed by most of the people in the street until the fire was brought under control.

After a few days we were back at Albert Road School (part time), Prince was back in the badly damaged stable and my father was back delivering coal for the premier Coal Company - along with his working pal Prince.

Lucy Maggs

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