Hello my name is James Smith. I am 41 years old and I work down in the Spittal Mine. I have been given this afternoon off work to join in the World War 2 party. (It is to celebrate the end of the War).
I am dressed in my best shabby suit also have my black mining boots on. I hitched a ride on a horse to the beach from William Jones who owns the tool shop.
Mr Jones struggled to understand my Russian accent but got enough to give me a ride to beach, on the way he noticed my axe with an oak handle on it. I arrived at the beach and there were lots of of the people and no more fighting, everybody was happy having fun and cheering when it got dark the sky lit up with fireworks.
mining pick axe
Window on Berwick display
Shadow the Aircraft Carrier
The Aircraft carrier is called “Shadow”. The ship was heading to Berwick-Upon-Tweed in 2 days time, when it arrives at Spittal it will stop in front of the crowd that had gathered on the beach.
There was posters all over the town telling people that there was going to be a celebration in 2 days time to celebrate the end of the war. The day had finally arrived for the big celebrations to begin, there was lots of families and friends gathered on the beach waiting for the ship to arrive.
All of a sudden we could see the flags on top of the ship slowly coming along the pier next to the lighthouse suddenly the ship stopped it was stuck on a sand bank as the tide was out.
A few hours later when the tide started to slowly rise the ship made its final small journey to the Spittal beach. Then the ship opened the big door and all the injured soldiers began to step on the sand looking for their family members.
After they were reunited with family and friends the soldiers cleaned the Aircraft carrier and fixing it as well. In the morning the ship looked brand new, so the soldiers took their families on the ship and sailed to their destinations on the way home.
“Shadow” was upgraded to 6 layers of metal and there was 10 extra canons also upgraded with lots of fire power and lots of ammunition, then “Shadow” turned 60 years old!
Then one soldier found the knight’s helmet under one set and a pot in a museum it is still in the museum today for people to go and look at.
replica knight’s helmet
replicas. chivalry period of knights in Britain
We set off from Denmark to Berwick.
We need to go over the horizon line soon.
It has taken us two days to get over.
Captain Smith got some sad news.
We are bringing somebody back in a coffin so when we got to Berwick Captain Smith blasted the ship’s horn to tell the people we were stopping.
The Navy lower their flag on the boat. So we did the proper military thing for people who died. People were asking if it was their family member but Captain Smith didn’t know.
The sea was very rough I felt so sick. All that I could think about was my little model of the coble boat that my Grandpa had made for me to take away to sea many years ago.
Captain Smith gave the command to get the boat ready to go so the engine started and we closed up the doors and we went back to Denmark.
The sickness soon went away.
Coble boat and fishing equipment
Window on Berwick display
1985.11.1 & 1985.1.7-13
Coble (fishing) and net with anchor, oars, rope, baler and seat board
My name is Harry McGuire I’m a spitfire pilot in the RAF I was injured as my spitfire was shot down by Germans. I landed next to the Berwick bridge with my parachute. In the distance I can see and hear a crowd of people gathered on Spittal beach.
Next I was searching for my co-pilot George, I could see his parachute at the other side of the bridge, shouting his name to check he was alright.
We then made our way to Spittal beach on a small fishing boat, where other soldiers were camped on whilst on a boat I noticed an injured soldier.
I got to talking to him but sadly he passed away. He carried a sword on his belt which I took in case I needed to protect myself and George.
When we arrived at the beach we were trying to find the rest of our squad.
All of a sudden we heard the spitfire engines, they appeared from over the cliff top it was our squad safe and well. They flew over Spittal beach in memory of the lives that were lost at war.
My name is Louise. I am 15 years old and I’m a maid and I work at Paxton House. I am getting ready to go to Berwick-upon-Tweed to go to Spittal beach, because the war is over and I heard there is a party to celebrate.
If you are wondering how I am getting there I am taking Lady Heston’s car. I got there, there was so many people on Spittal beach, I have never seen so many people in my life on Spittal beach.
Once I was on the beach I saw lots of people rolling down the grass bank onto the beach, once everyone came down from the grass bank everyone was cheering.
Then I decided to have a picnic before I went back to Paxton House. After my picnic Lady Heston came to pick me up, so i got the car and started to go back to Paxton House.
stick of rock
Window on Berwick display
Hello my name is Lady Rose. I am travelling by horse and carriage with Roger to Spittal beach. I am going to find my brother Herbert, I hope he is ok.
For this special day I have my best fancy dress on. It is white with lace and a big pink bow at the back.
My shoes are pink satin, a gift from my Granmar.
So many people on the beach, I feel anxious and scared. I smell the sea and hear the sh! sh! sh! of the waves.
Loads of people said Hi but I couldn’t understand because I am posh and I saw the boat coming in.
I was hoping to find my brother Herbert, I remember that he was so tall as he waved goodbye to me almost 3 years ago.
I looked around and saw a figure in front of me...so tall.
I ran on the soft wet sand and hugged Herbert.
between the Medieval and Burrell galleries
Sooty the Dog
Hello have you spotted me on the painting yet? I'm quite small, black, four legs and in the bottom right of the painting. Found me?
My name is Sooty, can you guess why? I am a Scottish Terrier and am enjoying all these crowds of people today.
I do not have a home and so any place I see lots of people gathered is a prime opportunity to find some dropped food or I get to ask for scraps and a scratch of my ears.
Spittal Beach to me means the café and all the tasty treats I find nearby; sticks of rock, ice cream cones, sandwiches, mmmm.
The war has been long and rough, being a dog I don't have a ration card to shop for my weekly supplies, so I rely on kind people giving me unwanted food.
If there are few people around then I go hunting for scraps on the pavement, in the park or at the beach.
souvenir tea pot
Window on Berwick display
‘Present from Spittal’
Wojteck the Bear
You are not going to find a bear in the painting but because we are talking about the Second World War there is a true and amazing story about the Syrian brown bear Wojtek (aka Voytek) who joined the army.
Abandoned as a cub in Syria, a Polish regiment adopted the cub as they were passing through in 1942. The soldiers treated him as one of their own and Wojtek was a fan of drinking beer and eating cigarettes in between friendly wrestling bouts with the soldiers.
Private Wojtek was officially employed by the King in the 22nd Artillery Supply Company of Polish II Corps of the British Army. He was given a food ration book and was paid in money. During the Battle of Monte Cassino in 1944 he carried heavy ammunition boxes to aid his soldiers.
Wojtek translates to "he who enjoys war" or "joyful warrior".
After the war Polish soldiers were allowed to resettle in Britain. Wojtek was shipped to Glasgow and transported to Winfield Camp near Berwick. After demobilisation the soldiers knew they could not take care of him so he was transferred to Edinburgh Zoo and received many visitors including old soldiers from the regiment .
He died aged 21 in 1963 and a memorial can be seen in Edinburgh's Princes Street Gardens.
There are also four other different statues of him remembering where he came from and what he achieved in his life; London (formerly made for a hotel beside Edinburgh Zoo, Cassino, Italy where he helped his regiment during the battle, Duns (close to the barracks he was in after the war) and Krakow in Poland.