" When peace was at last declared, we were all ecstatic. The feared black-out disappeared in a blaze of lights. Theatres, long used to gloomy exteriors, suddenly found themselves bathed in the brightest glow, illuminating the pavements."
"Huge bonfires, like beacons of hope, sprung up in many gardens and on waste ground, and our parents took my brothers and me to see the firework celebrations from a Westminster Bridge teeming with people whooping with delight, hugging, kissing, dancing and climbing lamp-posts, all inhibitions thrown to the wind.
One newspaper reported: 'A huge 'V' sign glares down over Leicester Square.'
And crowds of girls and soldiers of all the allied nations are waving rattles and shouting in wild, happy and celebration mood.'
Several days after the war in Europe's end, with celebrations over - a day when no enemy plane flew overhead, just one of ours - a Spitfire, Dad's favourite - and a kite riding the wind, I can recall skipping light-heartedly down the hill near our house.
I wondered whether, in later years, I would remember when our family was all together again, with Dad, one of the earliest conscripts to be demobbed, safe and sound, and dear Mum, cooking dinner in her own house as she used to; my heart full of pure happiness. Oh, I do!"
Editor: My Gentle War is available to buy on Amazon.