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World War II Memories


Bertha's Wartime Memories

Over lunch one day, Charlotte Stevens of Urafirth asked Bertha Peterson of Sullom all about her wartime memories. The following stories are an interesting, frightening and sometimes amusing first-hand account of life in Northmavine during World War II.

Many thanks to Charlotte for the initial idea and for making the recording, Bertha for recounting her tales and Bertha's brother who added some more detail! Fiona typed up the transcript from the tape.


painting of plane on Sullom Kirk

Painting on Sullom Kirk ©Terry Mayes


Part One - Run Rabbit Run

Part Two – Congregations and Craters

Part Three – Parties, food and more food!

Part Four – Gunnister School and the Home Guard

Part Five – Careless talk costs lives

Part Six – Scones, paper trails and iron ore


Northmavine - The War Years Remembered

Northmavine - The War Years Remembered bookletHEARD - Hillswick Eshaness Area Regeneration & Development Association have undertaken a World War II oral history project which has culminated in the production of a booklet and CD.

"This is a fascinating review written and compiled by Pat Christie about World War II and how it affected the lives of the people of Northmavine with transcripts from some of the recorded interviews gathered sixty years later during the Home Front Recall Project as well as some interesting photos dating from this era. The booklet includes a CD with a selection of some oral interviews that were recorded for your added enjoyment." HEARD website.

The story of World War II in Shetland, including some photos from that time, can be seen on the HEARD website.