Jean Vickery

Early 1942 I joined ATS - Initial training in Dalkeith - then to Vehicle Training School in hereford, hoping to become a Despatch Rider. The ’bikes were too big, and I was too short, so I trained as a driver instead. I was seconded to various regiments, mostly the Royal Engineers and the Royal Artillery. They were all very special people, but I have never lost my admiration for the superb and varied skills of the Royal Engineers - what they couldn’t do is not worth mentioning. One of my postings was to Donnington Park Race Track, which held thousands of diverse vehicles waiting to be shipped to different war zones and every now and again we had to convoy some to Tilbury Docks. We had no maps! There were no signposts! But we did have a small piece of paper listing the towns we should pass through! Now, if for some reason you had to stop, the rule was that the others had to go on without you. Many are the nice folk I’ve had to accost in semi-darkness from the cab of a lorry to ask, “is this so and so?” You can’t do that on a motorway!!