During the Second World War thousands of Canadian troops were
And they certainly made an impression – both good and bad.
On the good side, they were admired for travelling thousands of
fight for “the motherland” - England.
Many Worthing women fell under their spell, married members of the
Canadian garrison, and after the war emigrated to start a family.
Others fell pregnant out of wedlock and were left to bring up
alone as their boyfriends fought – and often died - on foreign
The Canadians were certainly a lively lot, but soon got restless and
turned to the town's pubs for solace.
Heavy drinking led to violence and vandalism, which was severely
upon by townsfolk.
A retired solicitor called CF Harriss, of Rectory Gardens,
Worthing, left various accounts of the Canadians' behaviour in a
diary which has just been published.
He tells of the regiments stationed in the town, the antics they got
to, and the attitude of residents towards them.
It forms a fascinating insight into a brief but far-reaching episode
the history of Worthing.
For thousands of Canadians alive today owe their existence to the
“special relationships” forged here during those turbulent times.
BLOB: Worthing At War: The Diary of CF Harriss was edited by
Paul Holden, 46, of Alinora Crescent, Goring, Worthing.
The book, costing £14.99, has been published by Phillimore, and is
available from good local bookshops.
It can also be ordered online by visiting