A SECOND World War evacuee has returned to Meifod, the place he called home for two years during the war.

Gerry Long, aged 87, travelled from his home in Skelmersdale along with his wife, Maureen, their son, Stephen and daughter-in law to The Kings Head pub where he took refuge during the war.

“I’m absolutely over the moon to be back in Meifod. It’s overwhelming,” said Gerry.

“I haven’t got a bad memory of this place. It’s just been great. If you had seen where we came from and the conditions we had in them days...”

Gerry and his family stayed in the same room – top floor on the right – he’d lived in during his time at The Kings Head, 80 years ago.

“It’s different now from when we were here. There was nothing but bunk beds for the 12 of us in the room. We had no clothes, only the things we arrived in.

“It’s full of ghosts. Everyone who was here back then have all gone.”

Gerry was reunited with Joe Jones, 82, one of the little boys in the school photograph from his time in Meifod all those years ago. Joe was five years old at the time the photo was taken at the new village school.

“I fell in love with a girl in school called Doris Jones and Joe happens to be her brother!” chuckled Gerry.

Gerry, only eight years old at the time, and his older sister, Josephine, were put on a train from Liverpool on the first day of the war and were evacuated to Meifod along with 50 other children.

He was cared for by Lesley and Betty Roberts, owners of The Kings Head, who took in 10 children.

“About 50 of us came here. Some went to Pentrego Farm, some to Dyffryn Hall and Lord and Lady Meade’s over the bridge. We were invited to a party at Lady Meade’s place and that was the first time in my life that I had pork with apple sauce.

“I learnt to swim here in the River Vyrnwy and I had my first experience being in a motorcar.

“It’s a wonderful place,” he said.

Gerry and his wife have been married for 64 years and met in Cannock, Staffordshire, when they were evacuated as children from Liverpool for the second time during the war.