Doug belongs to: Royal British Legion Seaman's Mess
Doug was born in South Shields in 1919. He joined the merchant navy at 15 with great ideas of adventure. During World War Two Bill was in the Arctic convoys and at the D-Day landings dropping off armaments.
Doug was interviewed by Kylea Little on 15 November 2005. The interview took place at South Shields Royal British Legion and lasted 55 minutes and 5 seconds.
Swimming with sharks
"On one occasion I was with a ship, before the war, I was in Guantanamo in Cuba"
On one occasion I was with a ship, before the war, I was in Guantanamo in Cuba, the American naval base. Our ship went there and, we all went ashore- there was a little part, little sandy beach not far from the dock where we were, and we went there and put on our swimming trunks, were swimming in the water.
We got back aboard the ship. Now, one of the American fellows from the base had seen us there and came to the ship. He said, “what are you guys doing swimming?” He said, “you shouldn’t be swimming there.” He said, “come here and I’ll show you.” He took us along the dock and then he said, “look down there,” and he threw some meat, because, bit of old meat off the cook, threw it in the water [makes splashing sound] fifteen foot sharks!
Doug has 20 memories in the memorynet:
- Joining the merchant navy
- Swimming with sharks
- Dorothy Irons
- Joan Horsbourgh
- The Spanish Civil War
- The Spanish Civil War part two
- The Russia convoys part one
- The Russia convoys part two
- The D-Day landings
- The Seaman’s Mess
- Continuous Certificate of Discharge
- Port Saint John
- Going to sea
- In a Calcutta Park
- Wage slip
- Dorothy Irons
- I Sailed the World with 30 Men by Joan Horsburgh
- British Seaman's Identity Card
- Sea Breezes
- Merchant navy badge