Maureen Hunt reminisces about visiting the station and hand-carving clogs
Resource Type: Audio | Posted on 12th September 2011 by Liam Physick
Maureen Hunt remembers how she would visit the station as a girl in order to steal, but also to have look round, noting especially the coal yards and the depots. She also recalls buying clogs and then hand-carving them - to this day, she is able to repair her own shoes
Interviewee: Maureen Hunt
Interviewee Gender: Female
Maureen: We used to come over here, quite a lot as kids . . .
Maureen: . . . and it’d be a day out, even though we were pinching.
Jenny: To come down to the station . . . ?
Maureen: Yeah, yeah.
Jenny: . . . would feel like a day out? Yeah?
Maureen: Yeah, it was, we used to follow the wagons round, picking up stuff, and what was . . . ?
Jenny: So would you, would you be, like, right very near to the tracks, then, you’d, you’d, or would you . . . ?
Maureen: God, yeah.
Maureen: Oh, God, yeah.
Pat: This, this was the goods yard, here . . .
Pat: . . . and there was four lines.
Maureen: And there was a coal . . .
Maureen: . . . coal yard there.
Pat: Yard . . .
Pat: . . . further back the coal . . .
Maureen: Yeah, further down.
Pat: . . . the coal yard was just beyond them (indecipherable due to Maureen talking over her) there.
Maureen: If you look, there’s doors in the wall . . .
Jenny: Onto the railway?
Pat: Yeah, yeah . . .
Jenny: I can see them.
Pat: . . . that’s it, yeah, yeah.
Maureen: . . . and that was (indecipherable) depots along the road. Yeah, that was (indecipherable) depots. I remember getting a pair of clogs made in Lally O’Toole’s in Tunnel Road . . .
Jenny: (laughing) Yeah.
Maureen: Yeah, and we thought we were posh (Jenny laughs), cos I . . .
Pat: We used to hand-carve them . . .
Maureen: Oh, yeah, oh yeah, he used to make them himself
Pat: . . . from a broth of water.
Jenny: Mammy O’Toole’s?
Maureen: Lally O’Toole’s, yeah, he used to make all his own stuff. Oh, I can mend my own shoes!
Jenny: You can, still?
Maureen: Yeah, with elast, yeah, we were taught to.
Pat: With elast, most people can, yeah.
Maureen: You had to, you had to.
Pat: Sew a buckle on, yeah.
Jenny: Might save a few, bit of money if I could that! (laughs)
Pat: No, honest.
Maureen: I did have elast but me son pinched it, he’s got it as a door-stopper now in . . .
Pat: We used to . . .
Pat: . . . have to go to Woolworth’s, to pick up the heels and the soles . . .
Maureen: Stick on the . . .
Maureen: No, we used to have piece, buy a piece of leather, and you’d have to cut it with a circular knife . . .
Jenny: Oh, yeah.
Pat: To get the shape.
Maureen: . . . to cut it round . . .
Maureen: . . . you used to put your shoe on the (simulates the sound of cutting leather), on it, and with a pencil . . .
Pat: Trace it round.
Maureen: . . . go round it, and then get this blooming knife and you’d be like that . . .
Jenny: Cutting the leather?
Maureen: It didn’t matter if you got blisters on your hands . . .
Pat: Or cut fingers.
Maureen: No (indecipherable), you haven’t seen my fingers – round – and then you had different sized nails, you used to go and buy a bag of nails . . .
Maureen: . . . shoe nails . . .
Pat: There was a rhythm to hitting them, wasn’t there . . . ?
Maureen: Oh, yeah.
Pat: . . . . because . . . I, I couldn’t hear the noise and the, the little cobblers’ shop in Pembroke Place, it was next door to a Jewish shop. My mum used to clean the Alderman Caplan, who came up this station and I know everyone round here cleaned all the paving stones so him and his wife could walk up, because they were going to meet the Beatles . . .
Jenny: Oh, wow!
Pat: . . . and they were picked up here . . .
Maureen: We did say . . .
Pat: . . . to be taken into the town all for this huge reception and I’d gone to pick a pair of shoes up for Mrs. Caplan, cos we wore pumps during the summer, and he had the shoe on the lask, and it was like (knocks loudly on the table) and I couldn’t hear it, but there was a rhythm to him hitting the table, and he had this bebble in the table where he hit with this hammer . . .
Maureen: Well, that was the lask . . .
Maureen: . . . built made at Home Bedding . . .
Jenny: Yeah, that’s it.
Maureen: . . . no matter what you do, you’ll find your own rhythm . . .
Jenny: Yeah, yeah.
Maureen: . . . if you’re sewing . . .
Pat: Yeah, true, yeah.
Maureen: . . . you know, with your stitches . . .
Pat: Yeah, I count the stitches, don’t I, yeah.
Maureen: You know, with everything you do, you’ll find your own rhythm if you’re doing it continuously.
Pat: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Categorised under: The Station & Railway Pioneers