Lawnmower Man

Never is a man happier than when he's operating a machine.

Steve is very proud that he can cut the grass around the museum buildings without leaving the cuttings all over the paths.

Inside The Anderson Shelter

A few posts ago I mentioned our Anderson Shelter which had been put up in our Digging For Victory Garden.

Les has very kindly taken a couple of photos of the interior where they have items like a thermos flask, a lantern and a blanket. Items that would be invaluable during the long hours spent in the shelter during air raids. If the income of the household was below £5 per week the government gave the shelter for free. If the income was more than that the family had to pay £7. By September 1939 over 1.5 million shelters had been issued.

The shelters measured 1.95m by 1.35m, and were made from 6 sheets of corrugated iron bolted together at the top. There were steel plates at either end and the front entrance would have an earthen blast wall. They were not popular as they were damp and cold and also the people in them could hear all the bombs going off around them. But they did save many lives.

As the air raids on the large cities in the U.K became a nightly occurrence people began to go d…

The Best Museum In Cornwall

Don't know how many of you look at Tripadvisor, but the Cornwall At War Museum has been voted the best museum in Cornwall.

That really takes some doing as Cornwall is full of Museums for such a variety of themes. There's the Regimental Museum in Bodmin - DCLI, Cornwall Aviation Heritage Centre, mining museums for clay, gold, tin, copper, even one for Witchcraft and one that includes cider making. 

So to all of you that have left us glowing feedback on Tripadvisor a heartfelt thank you. Everybody works so hard to make your visit an enjoyable experience and it's good to know that it's appreciated.

Parking places.

Yesterday Steve and Les tackled the job  of marking out the car parking spaces.

The home made tool required was a very "technical" piece of equipment to get the lines straight. This was Mk 2 as the first one didn't have string at each end.

Digging For Victory Garden

During WWII food supplies were in great demand and any piece of land that could be used for growing vegetables and fruit was a valued commodity. With the continued attacks on the Atlantic Convoys that brought food to the UK it became very important to grow as much as possible.

The Land Girls played an important part by continuing to do the work on farms that once men would have done. This helped for grain crops as well as fruit and vegetables, but it was the ordinary individuals that turned their hands to growing who helped to keep the country eating.

People no longer had flowers and neatly cut lawn at the front of their houses, it had all been dug up and potatoes and cabbages were more likely to be seen. Bomb craters were turned into vegetable patches, any piece of land that had some soil was used. One of the most famous vegetable patches was the moat around the Tower of London.

This sudden need for growing vegetables gave way to the slogan "Dig For Victory." Posters were show…

The 2018 BBQ

Every summer Steve and Sheila hold a BBQ as a good social get together for all the volunteers and their partners. As we all work different days we seldom all get together.

When you think of the sweltering summer that we've had you wouldn't believe that it rained on the chosen evening. However, not one to be thwarted by the weather, Steve put the BBQ under the clear shelter and cooked everything to perfection.

The hangar was opened up so everyone could sit in the dry and have a good time. I wasn't able to get there, but I expect John was in charge of the bar as he normally is. He's the perfect barman.

I've been told that, as normal, everyone had a good time and thank Steve and Sheila for a great social evening.

WWI Dug Outs

During World War 1 the soldiers in the trenches would dig out "caves" in going inwards from the trench.

These were known as dug outs and, although small, would house quite a few men. Inside the dug outs there were very few home comforts but it was a place of respite with maybe a few bunks, a desk for writing home or for reading the orders for the next day.

If the men were able to get candles they used them to light the room at night. One of the most inventive ways to illuminate the space would be by glow worm. During the day one of the men would collect up to 10 European glow worms. When it got dark the glow worms were put in a glass container and immediately lit up the whole room. Their light was enough for the men to read letters from home, and to write to their families. The officers had enough light to read the orders for the next day and study maps.

It's amazing that one tiny little worm could be so useful.

This is a mock up in the museum of what a dug out would look li…