Jim Elk's Story


Hi, Gerry,

Mind if I join the club?

I'm Jim Elks, born in Coventry 1928 and I came to Canada in 1954,

married a Canadian girl in 1955 and have been here ever since. During my

working life, associated with the aluminum industry, nuclear fuel,

thermoelectrics and latterly the Federal government, we've lived in

Arvida and Montreal (Quebec), Port Hope and Ottawa (Ontario). On

retirement in 1993 we moved to Brockville a city of 21,000 on the St.

Lawrence River.

As for as my evacuation experiences I guess I can refer you to Ralph

Worthington (Prof as he was known). I'm the other chap he mentions and

was one form behind him at Bablake, Coventry and went to Lincoln on the

same train after the big Blitz. Like Ralph I started out billeted with a

nice older couple who had a 14 year old daughter. I came in for teasing

by her friends when they came in to visit, but she knew enough to leave

me alone. I must say they were extremely good to me and treated me as a

member of the family. However after a year or so they found it too much

so I moved into the 300 year old house that Ralph describes. This I

found an enjoyable experience being like boarding school.

I completed my first-year Higher School Certificate then left to start

work in Coventry but completed my HSC at Coventry Tech part time and

went on, like Ralph, to Birmingham University, getting a degree in

Industrial Metallurgy in 1948.

So much about myself. Let me tell you about the great place where I


Brockville "The City of the Thousand Islands" is situated right on the

St. Lawrence River with beautiful parks and accessible waterfront. It's

an old settlement founded when the Empire Loyalists made their decision

to stay with the British crown. There is still a sense of pride among

the descendants of these folk. Most of the population are English, Scots

and Irish with very little French or Ethnic background.

We're on the main rail line and four lane express highway 211 miles from

Toronto and 130 from Montreal. Ottawa is 68 miles away and mostly four lanes so it's a little over an hour away.

We have most of the basic facilities and shopping, an excellent library

and an 800 seat theatre. We don't however, have the major shopping malls

and box stores (except WalMart) This is more of a concern to my wife

than to me but Ottawa, a region of 600,000, has all these.

Brockville is a pleasant place to live, no traffic problems and I live

10 mins walk from the downtown and waterfront.

If you're interested to know more this site has it all (I live on

Abbott St.) http://www.brockville.com

Best regards to all other evacuees.