Now that the 1939 Register is included in the FindMyPast 12 Month World Subscription I have started looking up my ancestors who were alive at that time. At the moment the records of my parents, Roy and Doris Brittain (nee Neville) are closed because they were born in the late 1920s and died after 1993. I have no idea where they were in September 1939 – presumably evacuated somewhere, so I can’t get the records unlocked.
My maternal grandparents Frederick and Esther Neville (nee Saunders) were easily found living at 53 Lawrence Avenue, Walthamstow. Frederick’s occupation is given as a woodwork stock keeper . Living with them were two of my grandma’s siblings: my great uncle Francis F Saunders, a cabinet fitter and my great aunt, Doris Saunders who was a “laundry calendar hand“. I had no idea what this meant until I looked it up and discovered that a “calendar machine” is a type of rolling ironing machine for ironing of large flat items such as sheets.
One of the great things about the 1939 Register is that the full date of birth is given, so I can now add the details of my great aunt Doris (“aunty Doll”) to my tree. She was born on 5th July 1916, just a couple of days before her father, John William Saunders enlisted in the Kings Royal Rifle Regiment.
On my paternal side, my grandparents Ernest and Rosalind Brittain (nee Mason) were living at 52 Boyton Road, Wood Green. My grandfather’s occupation was “Railway Porter LNE Railway“. With them was Kate E Mason, who was my 2x great aunt. She is described as “incapacitated” but the next two words aren’t clear – it looks as though it might say “little assistance” but I’m not really sure.
Kate Mason was my great grandfather’s unmarried half sister, the daughter of John Thomas Mason and Catherine Sarah (nee Eade). I was aware that she had been close to members of my family, as my uncle remembered her quite well, but I was surprised to find her living with my grandparents.
Now to find the whereabouts of my great grandparents…………