Lynton and Lynmouth Floods – August 1952
In August 1952 myself and comrades of 35 company R.A.S.C. (MT) Ward Barracks, Bulford camp, Wiltshire were sleeping peacefully when at about 02.00 hours we were suddenly awakened and ordered to our vehicles to proceed to Royal Engineers Bridge at Weyhill. On arrival we were instructed to load-on Bailey bridge sections. Once loaded we drove to Dulverton, where we arrived at approximately 1800 hours and between the engineers and ourselves we unloaded the bridge sections. The engineers set about laying the main beams across the river by 20.00 hours. Locals on both sides were able to cross again after several days, and that evening they put on a party for us troops.
The next day we were off again to Weyhill, and loaded another bridge which we took to Simonsbath. That was a hectic journey in more ways than one! Over the next ten days we delivered several more bridges, and then two of us were detached to a unit near the Parracombe area. Will and I and took over a jeep and drove surveyors on the moors and transported civil and military personnel up and down the steep hill which was in a dangerous condition.
I spent about four weeks or so there, then returned to live in Bideford and another seven or eight weeks later I was demobbed after six years’ service.