Astrid Massey talks about NUR Branch Five

Resource Type: Audio | Posted on 17th February 2012 by Liam Physick

Astrid Massey describes how the National Union of Railwaymen’s Branch Five purchased a club on Deane Road to organise social functions, including Charlie Chaplin films and performances by Ken Dodd: Astrid herself worked there as a barmaid

Interviewee: Astrid Massey

Interviewee Gender: Female

Date of Interview: 17th November 2011

Interview Transcript

Jodie: Did you live in the local area, then, did you live near to Edge Hill?

Astrid: Bradfield Street.

Jodie: Bradford Street?

Astrid: No, Bradfield.

Jodie: Bradfield Street.

Astrid: Well, I was there from 1941, I’m still in the same street in a different number! (both she and Jodie laugh) I’ve told you about the LDC, double trips . . . oh, yeah . . . about the NUR, National Union of Railwaymen Five Branch, do you want to know about them?

Jodie: Yeah, yeah.

Astrid: National Union of Railwaymen Number Five, they bought or purchased the club in Deane Road, and it was known and NUR, and a lot of the local people, railwaymen, were on committees and everything, it started off, I think it was about 1952, but when it first started they used to show films of Charlie Chaplin and . . . old films, so that children could go, but then when they got established, they used to have a lot of, there used to be thriving . . . they used to have a lot of things going on, there was rail people, railway people that come from Walton-on-the-Hill used to come every week, there was numerous, well more, more often than not, it was, everybody that was there was something to do with the railway. Well, that was thriving, they used to have artists on, and I’m going back again, Ken Dodd was one (Jodie giggles), and there was, they, they used to have some really good acts on and the man that, that was the steward, his name was Charlie, Charles Fitzsimmons, there, there was various people that was on the committees that were local people and . . . it, it just seemed, it was going for years and then it just seemed to go down as, and as far as I know, it was sold . . .

Jodie: Ah, right.

Astrid: . . . to Dean, Deano’s had it, but I don’t know, but I even worked there when I was 18 . . .

Jodie: Aw!

Astrid: . . . as a barmaid.

Jodie: (laughs) So it was like a social club place, was it, that had been set up by the rail . . . ?

Astrid: It was but it was a, a, everybody that went there, there was something to do with railway, and it was a, a community place. It was really, this area was thriving, I mean, me own husband used to get the half six to Manchester to Barton Bridge (Jodie laughs) when he was working at Manchester, but a train would come and there’d be that many people getting off the train, that, that there seemed to be really good crowds, not like now.

Tagged under: edge hill station, edge hill area, trade unions, national union of railwaymen, deane road, charlie chaplin, ken dodd, bradfield street

Categorised under: Social Life

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