James Dutton

At the outbreak of World War Two, James (Jim) Dutton was a young boy growing up in Goldenhill, Stoke-on-Trent. He remembers how he used to play on the junction of Heath Street, New Street and Albert Street in Goldenhill, and that his friends would be in little gangs called ‘top enders’, ‘middle enders’ and ‘bottom enders’. He was a ‘middle ender’.

Evacuation wasn’t explained to him, but all of a sudden his family of six were joined in their small terraced house by two informal evacuees, David Dean and his mother Clarice from Kent. Clarice was a long-time acquaintance of his half-sister’s.

James can remember David started to cause trouble between the two mothers and was telling tales on James and his siblings. He also remembers when, for some reason, the new guests started to eat better than they were! David’s mother would go out with his half-sister, leaving his own mother looking after the children, and he was sad that his mother was left out. He did not particularly enjoy having them to stay. Click on the link below to listen to him talking about the day they left:-

James Dutton – cheering when they left

Transcript for James Dutton’s audio clip