ALY MORRISON'S "BUTTERFLY" ADVENTURES IN THE WORLD OF WARGAMES AND TOY SOLDIERS

Sunday, 4 April 2021

An Old Book... and a bit of family history.

Greetings...

Over the weekend I decided to put the Great Library at Morrison Towers into some order...

While looking through... sorry tidying... the many books I came across this little volume...



So... A little bit of family history.

During the Second World War my grandmother worked or possibly managed the cafeteria/tearoom at the Falkirk ice rink... My mother would help out at times but mostly she would skate... She was an excellent skater who won a number of gold medals... 

She also got to know members of  the 1st Polish Armoured Division who were stationed in the area during the war... I believe they would have been part of the HQ 1st Polish Corps.

This book was given as a souvenir to my mother... I am guessing after the war.


Ena is of course my mother... sadly I don’t know anything about Roman.

Here are a few more pages from the book...




















Here is a little bit more information on the 1st Polish Armoured Division and their stay in Scotland.







I remember my mother saying that many of the lads who she new from the ice rink chose to stay in Scotland after the war but I don’t think she kept in touch...

I was hoping to have a bit of a paint-fest this weekend but as I was finishing tidying the books I managed to pull a muscle in my back...
Not picking up a massive volume on Napoleonic uniforms but an Osprey book on the Byzantine Armies 1118-1461... more of a 40 page pamphlet really... age... isn’t it wonderful.

Hopefully it will have eased off by tomorrow...

All the best.   Aly





36 comments:

  1. Hope you are soon restored to full health and mobility Aly!

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    1. Thank you David...
      My back has eased off... so I can get back to painting toys...

      Unfortunately everything else still hurts as usual.😳😁

      All the best. Aly

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  2. This is a nifty rediscovery, Aly! I guess you will have time to read now that you are on light duty from your library reorg. Best wishes!

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    1. It is indeed Jonathan...
      I have just finished reading about Byzantine Armies... I had it at hand so why not 😁

      All the best. Aly

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  3. A very nice find that Aly and I hope your back recovers quickly.

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    1. It’s a smashing little book Steve.
      My back is on the mend...😁

      All the best. Aly

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  4. No WW2 expert but there are some rare vehicles there and that 88 shot was a very close call.

    Get well soon!

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    1. There are indeed some nice looking vehicles Stuart...
      I suspect dress order that evening may have been brown trousers 😳.

      All the best. Aly

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  5. Oh wow! That's a fantastic booklet. I bet its pretty rare as well. Hope your back feels better soon.

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    1. Thank you Ray my back is feeling a lot better today...
      I was wondering how common this kind of book/souvenir was... I may have to do a little research.

      All the best. Aly

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  6. Great find Aly. I love discoveries like this!

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    1. It’s a lovely book...
      It actually brought back memories of me finding it as a ten year old...
      I spent so much time looking though it that mum just said that I may as well keep it.

      All the best. Aly

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  7. I think you could guess at the fact that I also like old books... and ones produced at the time have an edge to them that later, 'possibly' more accurate ones don't. Nice book, nice story.

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    1. What’s not to like about a nice old book...
      I reckon this was printed just after the war...and looking at the back I would say it was while they were still in Holland... so it definitely has fresh edge to it.

      All the best. Aly

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  8. It's truly amazing how many Poles escaped to fight again.

    Before I retired I worked at North Weald Airfield and researched an article about the seven Polish pilots who flew from there in 1940 with 151, 249 and 257 Squadrons, tow being killed at the time.

    We also had two Polish Warwick transport squadrons based at NW in 1945. Other foreign and Commonwealth squadrons include two American Eagle Squadrons, Norwegians, Czechs, Canadians and New Zealanders.

    I am having a clear out at the moments and have uncovered various wargames magazines from the 1970s.

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    1. It is indeed incredible how many Poles and other peoples managed to escape to fight again...
      The story’s of their journeys are a fascinating subject in its own right.
      I think most of my ‘clear outs’ are just exercises in re-reading πŸ˜‚

      All the best. Aly

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  9. Interesting stuff Aly. I think I mentioned this previously but the town I am from, Montrose, had an RAF station..in fact, it has been turned into a museum since I moved to NZ. During the war, there was a Plish squadron there, and I remember my mum talking about the pilots she knew, many if them in their early twenties. She Akan told a story about a younger Ple who went to school with her. One time, the children in the class were asked to write a story about their most exciting day...some wrote about going on a day trip or maybe even a holiday (not a common experience in the thirties or forties) but the Polish boy wrote about how his family had fled Poland and one day, they had to hide in a corn fielded as Russian Cossacks on horses searched for them, slashing at the crops with their sabres ....anazing stuff and not that long ago either.....

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    1. Wow... hiding from sword wielding Cossacks certainly trumps a day trip to Dumfries.
      I wonder what the teacher had to say about it.?
      I am glad I had a relatively uneventful childhood.

      All the best. Aly

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  10. I know about back troubles...hope you're over this bout soon. What a gem that booklet is--and that's without the personal connections that I'm sure it conjures for you.. My late Father in law was among the Poles in France in 1940: he wound up (somehow, I never did find out) in the US Army in France after the war (until France and the US parted ways and US forces were no longer stationed there). W

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    1. My back is easing up now... maybe I should get one of the servants to pick up the books next time πŸ˜‚
      The book is a certainly a part of a snapshot of my mother’s life growing up in Falkirk.
      I have actually looked up old pictures of the ice rink just to place the surroundings in my mind...πŸ˜€

      All the best. Aly

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  11. That book's a real little treasure - a lovely thing to have. It also looks usefully light, so you're safe enough with that one. Take it easy, bro.

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    1. It is indeed Tony...
      I may have to build up slowly to the bigger volumes in the library... 😁

      All the best. Aly

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  12. Great find and a fascinating story. Many thanks for sharing.

    Hope your back is better and you are feeling better soon.

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    1. It’s a pleasure Mark...
      My back is now on the mend...

      All the best. Aly

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  13. Really interesting Aly, glad that you shared it! Funny enough I live 5 min drive from the current HQ of the 1st Polish Armoured Division :-)

    As to Polish forces and Scotland, I guess you know the fascinating story of Wojtek the Bear and how he ended up in Edinburgh zoo.

    I hope your back feels better! I pulled something in my neck almost two months ago as a result of which I haven’t painted since. Hope to get back to painting soon though!

    Best wishes,
    Jan

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    1. Thank you Jan...
      It’s a small world isn’t it ...
      Yes I know about Wojtek... there is even a statue to him in Princess St Gardens in Edinburgh.
      My back has eased up a lot... a diligent use of drugs and some TENS Machine pain relief applications ... you should give the TENS ago yourself .

      https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/transcutaneous-electrical-nerve-stimulation-tens/

      Hurrah! A painting I will go...😁

      All the best. Aly

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  14. Been there, done that, doing something equally as inane like turning around. At least you have an excuse to put your feet up now and sip some wine! Thanks for sharing your find. I had no idea such things were produced during the war.

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    1. Cheers David.

      This back thing appears to be a common thing when you get to a certain age...

      I am intrigued to find out how common these book/souvenirs books were...

      All the best. Aly

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  15. Lovely bit of history Aly. Good luck with the back.......

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    1. It is indeed Matt...
      The back is a lot better.

      All the best. Aly

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  16. A super turn up, super bit of history. Hope the back injury is only fleeting, it could get expensive, if you are not painting you will be fluttering more.

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    1. It is indeed Phil...

      I can neither confirm nor deny that there has been any fluttering 😁

      All the best. Aly

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  17. Wonderful book with a personal connection, it is amazing that Poland had the fourth largest allied army,even though it was occupied for virtually the whole war! Back trouble is terrible, hope you are better soon!
    Best Iain

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    1. I think the Polish army actually grew as the war went on...

      The back is fine now 😁

      All the best. Aly

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