Maureen Hunt remembers the Tunnel picture house
Resource Type: Audio | Posted on 12th September 2011 by Liam Physick
Maureen Hunt recalls the Tunnel picture house on Tunnel Road, nicknamed the “Tunny”. She remembers how the trains could be heard passing by during the films. Maureen and her sister Betty would station a boy at each end of the row, to guard against any would-be harassers, and once played a trick on their brother George! Maureen also remembers how one of her friends lost her contact lens in the Dallas nightclub, situated on the site of the demolished Tunny, but ultimately found it at the back of her eye!
Interviewee: Maureen Hunt
Interviewee Gender: Female
Maureen: And when if you were in the Tunnel picture house and you were watching pictures, you’d go (makes a high-pitched noise) as the train went past! (she and Jenny laugh)
Pat: They were the steam trains, weren’t they?
Maureen: Yeah . . .
Maureen: . . . and you’d have there, some Dick Barton’s, knowing them, and one of them be hanging on the connect, and you’d be going . . . (all three burst out laughing) The train!
Pat: 3D cinema before it came out!
Maureen: You know when you think about . . .
Jenny: So, where was the Tunny, was it literally up . . .
Maureen: Where the Job Centre is now . . .
Pat: Centre, yeah, there, this way here.
Jenny: Up here?
Pat: Yeah, up there . . .
Maureen: No, it’s not.
Pat: . . . up there it is, Maureen.
Maureen: Oh, yeah, over there, over there.
Pat: Yeah, yeah.
Jenny: So that’s, that’s Tunnel Road . . .
Jenny: . . . there, yeah.
Maureen: Actually, where the Job Centre was.
Jenny: Oh, right!
Maureen: I remember being in there about 14, 13 or 14, and this fellow’s setting next to me, and next thing I feel his hand going up! (Jenny gasps) And you wouldn’t mind but I had black stockings that had belonged to the school! (Jenny laughs) You know, the school stockings!
Pat: Oh, we always got the dirty home, now! (Jenny laughs)
Maureen: I liked this home! (Jenny laughs) And that was like, that was the Saturday . . .
Jenny: At the Matinée?
Pat: The Matinée.
Pat: Yeah, they were known for it cos all the kids went, you’d have to be careful who was sat next to you (Jenny sounds intrigued), we always made sure we had a lad off the block on each end! (Jenny laughs)
Maureen: Me brother was there! And me mam said to him, “What happened to you? Our Mo’s just been home ages!”, I said, “He copped off”, she said, “He what? And he left you and our Betty!”, I said, “All right, mam, we run all the way home!” (Jenny laughs)
Pat: Didn’t tell her nothing!
Pat: Yeah, yeah.
Jenny: So was that your brother?
Maureen: Yeah, our Georgie, yeah.
Jenny: How old, is he older . . . ?
Maureen: He was three years older than me . . .
Maureen: . . . and then a sister three years older than me . . .
Maureen: Now, my sister is 18 months younger than me, they’re both dead, the other two, but . . . you know . . .
Jenny: So you used to go to the pictures together?
Maureen: Well, Mam made him! (Jenny laughs)
Jenny: Did you have to persuade them to take you?
Maureen: Do you know what happened to the girls? Well, you didn’t get your sixpence and then you took us with us.
Jenny: Oh, yeah. (Pat laughs)
Maureen: Yeah, yeah. Shilling of a night and sixpence of a day.
Jenny: So, is it been knocked down, then, the actual building?
Pat: Yeah, yeah . . .
Maureen: Yeah (indecipherable).
Pat: . . . yeah. It went over to where the Dallas, didn’t it, for a while?
Maureen: It, it, was, like, a bingo hall for a while . . .
Jenny: Oh, right.
Pat: Yeah, yeah. And, and, and then went to a nightclub called the Dallas and my sisters . . .
Jenny: A nightclub?
Jenny: In Edge Hill?
Maureen: (indecipherable) the Dallas, the Dallas, yeah, I remember . . .
Pat: Yeah, the Dallas, because our Anne, Angie and Donna all met their partners in there.
Maureen: It was called something else before that, because one of me friends when we did go there one night, and one of me friends lost her contact lens (Jenny sounds shocked) and we’re all on the floor going . . .
Pat: Trying to find it.
Jenny: (laughing) In a nightclub?
Maureen: Is that bloody thick shit . . .
Pat: Yeah, honestly, you wouldn’t have found it.
Maureen: We did!
Pat: Oh, did you find it?
Maureen: It was at the back of her eye! (they all laugh)
Categorised under: Landmarks, Landscapes & Locomotives