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A unique way of showing rebellion during the Occupation

Rebelling in his own unique way

Between 1940 and 1945 life was hard for those living in Guernsey as the Channel Islands were occupied by German forces.

There were many forms of mild rebellion during those years, most notably making homemade radios, but one man went a step further.

Hugh Tidd constructed a tobacco cutting machine that allowed him to make cigarettes, which were in short supply, and barter them for other goods.

His son Mike explained that he made the machine using whatever he could find.

Tobacco cutter
Hugh Tidd made this tobacco cutting machine from whatever he could find

Mike said: "The frame of it is a German barbed wire fence post that Dad obviously 'borrowed' to enable him to make it."

Hugh used tobacco he grew in his greenhouse.

Richard Heaume, the director of the German Occupation Museum said: "If you couldn't get food cigarettes were the next most important thing because they reduced the hunger level."

So with an island on the brink of starvation Hugh's homemade cigarettes provided a form of relief for islanders.

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