Wednesday, 12 February 2014

My brave mum

We have boxes and bags of old photos, documents and nic naks up in our loft, most of them ive known of for yonks. However, a few weeks back i ventured up there to find something and came across an old envelope dated 1946. What it contained both thrilled and moved me at the same time.

a close up shot so you can read what it says.

How great is that?

It was given to my late mum, she was only 19 at the time. She began working there when she was 16. She wanted to go into the land army bit wasnt fit enough having been sickly most of her life, so she decided to work there instead doing war work.

Leather Cloth Company Limited, sole manufacturers of Crockett’s American leather cloth as it was also known was a large factory making materials for wartime. It was bombed just before mum began working there and during her service too. It was based in Abbey Lane, Stratford, East London.


This is an excerpt from her memories which she began relating to me shortly before she died in 1989.

"When I was sixteen I decided to go into a war time job.  I went to the Leathercloth, it wasn't very far away.  They made material for army uniforms.  That was pretty good too, I enjoyed that.  I had to stay there till the end of the war.  We had a bomb land on the building over a weekend and then it rained so when we got to work on the Monday everything had gone rusty.  We had to spend all the week getting the rust off before we could start any jobs"

I dont recall ever seeing it before or talking to mum about it which is a shame.  She used to tell me stories of the black outs during the war and how she would have to walk miles in the pitch black to and from work. How brave and resilient folk were at that time, i know i wouldnt be as brave today.

The company paid for a war memorial for both soldiers and civilian employees to be remembered.

I'm going to get it framed and hang it up with pride.

Gill xx


  1. Parts of Stratford were pretty much destroyed during the war. I don't think we can even begin to imagine what it must have been like to have got up and gone to work everyday not knowing whether you or your family was going to be there when you got back. They were a resilient lot!

  2. Hi Gill what a lovely story to share all those memories of your mum. I remember my mum saying how she walked in the blackouts to get to work at the local cotton mills. When you think of what we have today it amazes me. Thank you again for sharing x


Thank you so much for leaving me a comment, i love reading them and coming to visit you in return.
Gill x