Some of Mrs. J. Kiddell's pets.

Some of Mrs. J. Kiddell's pets.

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Area Mitcham
Copyright 1 Mitcham Public Library
Picture Reference Mit_​War_​2-18
Original Format Photo
Notes / History At the outbreak of World War II, J. Kiddell had a grocery shop at 12, Upper Green East, Mitcham. The family’s living accommodation was situated above these premises at No.12a.

The Kiddells were the only residents living in the street in September 1940, when a landmine fell on the Methodist Church near their shop. James, Lily, Evelyn and Phyllis were sheltering in an Anderson Shelter in the rear garden at the time of the explosion, together with their pets. Fortunately all emerged unscathed and Phyllis is pictured with the 4 family dogs, 3 puppies, 7 cats and 2 birds.

Whilst the grocery shop was cleaned up and reopened relatively quickly, the living accommodation was unusable and the family spent around 18 months living in the shelter, until alternative housing was found at Steers Mead, Mitcham. Most of their possessions including their car, an elderly Bullnose Morris Oxford, were destroyed.

Evelyn Kiddell can be seen clearing the shelter in a Pathe Newsreel, titled “Mitcham Bombed 1940” - this can be viewed at

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