duty airmen, known as GIs, soon found their way to Mulbarton. Some bought
bikes from Mr Frost's garage. The World's End was soon overwhelmed and was
frequently out of beer. I remember, after a hard day in the harvest fields and
dying for a drink, my father complaining, "The Yanks have drunk
the pub dry!"
Saturday Night Dance was organised by Mrs Nicholls in the Wingfield Hall and
Mulbarton was introduced to Jitter-Bugging! There was a continuous flow of US
military vehicles through Mulbarton at the time and standing on the corner near
Mrs Funnell's corner shop was not too safe.
Americans were looked on with a certain amount of envy, of course. Their
uniforms were good quality; they wore ties and shoes and had lots of money.
They were generous to us locals and the expression "Got any gum,
chum?" was common. Most of my friends collected American gum wrappers, so
to be different I collected Candy wrappers. Needless to say, this was a very
romantic period in the life of Mulbarton. Most girls of eligible age had an
children from Mulbarton and other schools around were invited to Hethel for a
Christmas party. I assume it will have been 1944. We were well fed and got
presents, but the best bit for me was skidding about in a jeep in the mud! It
was said that an aircraft was sent up to a great height so as to freeze the
icecream. [Several other Mulbarton residents remember that party, where they
tasted ice-cream for the first time ever - wonderful chocolate ice-cream says
May 1945 the European War ended and the Americans left. It all seemed very
sudden. I went to Hethel just before. We were allowed on the base and I was
given a pair of boots which I treasured. I tried to make off with some
sheets but a Military Policeman with a gun told me to put them back and I
didn't argue! My
father bought a bike from Mr Frost which had been sold back by a G.I.
was never to be quite the same in Mulbarton.