Home » Caithness at War Blog » Caithness at War Week 196

Caithness at War Week 196

31 May - 6 June 1943

On 2 June Pope Pius XII controversially criticised the Allied “terror” bombing, having previously made no comment on German bombing of civilians. On 3 June members of the French Resistance sabotaged the Michelin plant in Clermont-Ferrand, destroying some 3,000 tons of rubber tyres. Also on 3 June the plane carrying the British screen actor Leslie Howard was shot down over the Bay of Biscay.


4 Jun JOG Norseman on Crows‘Norseman’ in the John O’Groat Journal this week reflected on the county’s crow population, which was more numerous than ever, and recounted a drastic remedy to the problem. “Among local farmers there is a surprising difference of opinion as to whether the crow is a nuisance or not… Many years ago a landowner in the parish of Bower gave active expression to his opinions by burning down the trees on which the crows nested.”


31 May Killimster School Farm WorkWith spring well advanced, more children were being pulled out of school to help in the fields. The Head Teacher of Killimster School recorded in the log book on 31 May, “Jean R. Work has applied for leave of absence from school to assist in farm work.”


4 Jun Gillock School Wellington BootsAs several teachers had noted in their log books, many children in Caithness did not have adequate shoes to wear, and the shortage of rubber caused by the war only made things worse. Some American charities even arranged for shipments of rubber boots to be sent specifically for British children. On 4 June the Head Teacher of Gillock School noted in the log book: “Wellington Boots. A certain number of these may be made available and granted to children (a) on special request by the teacher and (b) on production of a medical certificate.”


4 Jun Ackergill School Immunisation AgainBack on 7 May the children of Ackergill School had received their first diphtheria shots. Now as the school log book records, it was time for their second. “On Monday of this week Dr Bruce visited the school to give the second injection for diphtheria immunisation.”


4 Jun JOG Schoolboy VandalismFinally this week the John O’Groat Journal reported a serious case of vandalism in Wick, when nine schoolboys aged between 9 and 13 were charged with “maliciously damaging the football pavilion in the Harmsworth Park… The boys were observed in the Harmsworth Park, and were seen to be demolishing the roof of the football pavilion. The police were notified, and when a policeman arrived on the scene the boys were still there destroying the property.” Five of the boys pleaded guilty and were put on probation.

Coming soon! Week 197, 7th – 13th June 1943, will be published on Monday 6th June 2016. To view previous issues please use the menus on the right hand side of the page.

Come and join us on Facebook, let us know what you think about Caithness At War, ask any questions you may have or just say hello! Click on the Facebook link below to be taken directly to our page.