To the editor,

My mother, who'd been out celebrating, came home in the evening.

She dragged my brother (seven) and I (eight) out of bed saying, "You must see this moment of history!"

Bleary-eyed, we left our house in Bainton Road and were further dazed when we reached St Giles by the street lighting and the crowds.

Nothing like this during the war!

I don't remember much but have a vivid memory of a string of bonfires down the middle of St Aldates and a man wrapped in the union flag running and leaping over every one of them.

My other recollection was the acrid smell of burnt rubber in Cornmarket.

The fires had scorched the rubber bricks that were laid to suppress the traffic noise in those days.

Outside The Clarendon Hotel were the usual group of GIs.

We kids used to hang around there braying, "Got any gum, chum?"

Christopher Prior, 83

Parnell House

Streatham Street