Brenda Allen remembers what she would do in her spare time

Resource Type: Audio | Posted on 12th September 2011 by Liam Physick

Brenda Allen remembers how she would keep herself amused. She mentions stairies, visiting the seaside, and of how Mrs. Elliott would occasionally join in the games. On one occasion, Mrs. Elliott pursued and caught Roy, Brenda’s elder brother, who had been cheeky to his mother, and brought him back to the house to be clouted by Mrs. Allen

Interviewee: Brenda Allen

Interviewee Gender: Female

Interview Transcript

Brenda: We’d go out in the garden and dig holes and keep ourselves amused for hours, you know, there was no, sort of, toys or games or . . . we had stairies, me brothers would always make the stairies, we’d go up and down the street. But with Edge Hill station, that’s quite special, because we used to get the train to the seaside, cos we had the free pass and, you know, quite poor, but it has a lot of fond memories, running down the slope here . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Brenda: . . . or screaming, (puts on a childish voice) “We’re going, going the seaside!” . . .

Margi: (laughing) Oh, that’s brilliant!

Brenda: . . . me dad and mum with the butties, so . . . (laughs)

Margi: Yeah, that’s fabulous that, isn’t it, you know, like, when you think back. I wonder what the children of today, you know, treated a memory, kind of thing.

Brenda: Yeah.

Margi: Yeah, when you think back, you’ve got all those things to think about and to remember, and . . .

Brenda: Yeah, do you know what, we were lucky, cos it was magical in the cotts cos we were so protected but we had such freedom, we had the garden . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Brenda: . . . and we’d climb the wall, you know, do, like, rock climbing on the wall, and we had the big garden, grew all our own veg, and we’d dig holes in the garden and plan everything, all the kids in the street, and then we’d play cricket and rounders. Oh, Mrs. Elliott, she was lovely, she lived in the big house, she was one of the mothers, she’d come out and play with us . . .

Margi: Oh, yeah.

Brenda: . . . bit of a tomboy, and she’d play cricket and . . .

Margi: Skipping, thing?

Brenda: . . . skipping, yeah, and I remember me, me elder brother giving me mum cheek, our Roy, me, me dad had been, he’d died a few years earlier, so there was no one to chastise him, so Mrs. Elliott run him up the street, put his arm up his back, brought him back to me mother’s, said, “Here you are, Mrs. Allen”, cos every, nobody called each other by their first names, we had to call everyone Mrs. or Mr., and she said, “Here he is, give him a clout”, so me mum could tell him off and give him a clout, I mean, you couldn’t do that now, could you?

Margi: Oh, my word, no, God . . .

Brenda: Well . . .

Margi: . . . imagine, can you imagine . . .

Brenda: All right . . .

Margi: . . . what it would turn out like? (Brenda laughs) Cos, it’s a pity. (laughs)

Brenda: I know, it is a pity cos . . .

Margi: It’s a pity that you can’t do that now.

Brenda: . . . I mean, you couldn’t say we were angels but we had respect if somebody grown up . . .

Margi: Yeah.

Brenda: . . . told you to stop, that was it, wasn’t it?

Margi: Yeah, you know, that was scary . . .

Brenda: Yeah, was, aye.

Margi: . . . if that happened.

Brenda: But we used to have, just have so much fun, so it was . . .

Margi: Yeah. It sounds like you really enjoyed yourself.

Brenda: It was, we all get together, some of us get together and that’s all we talk about, the railway cottages.

Margi: Is that right, yeah, so you still see people, you still see . . . ?

Brenda: Yeah, well, there’s John Marston, he was, hopefully he was going to come up today, might come later, but they moved from the cottages, and his dad was a barber, and they moved into the barber’s shop in Smithdown Road, and . . . I mean, I, I could name most of them in our street.

Tagged under: railway cottages, smithdown road, seaside, leisure time stairies, clouting, barber's shop

Categorised under: Change & Communities

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