Pat Moffat remembers life on Smithdown Road when she was a girl
Resource Type: Audio | Posted on 9th September 2011 by Liam Physick
Pat Moffat reminisces about her childhood on Smithdown Road. She explains that it was a multicultural area but everybody got on well, although her sister Donna was terrified when she saw a turban for the first time! She fondly recalls the smells from the herbs and spices shop on Grampy Street
Jenny: And whatâ€™s your memories then of Smithdown Road, and the shops, and . . . ?
Pat: Oh, gosh . . . I can remember the first time we, we, weâ€™d ever come up, and my younger sister Donna, sheâ€™s 10 years younger than me, so sheâ€™d be two coming up, and screaming, cos she saw a man with a turban on (Jenny laughs), weâ€™d never seen anybody like that ever in our lives. My mum was known as Black Annie, so, the, the black skins . . .
Jenny: Sheâ€™s dark, yeah.
Pat: . . . of, of people never frightened us, it, it, it was the costumes they wore, the clothing, turbans on their head, and men wearing dresses over trousers, I mean, we, we couldnâ€™t get our heads round it, you know, and we werenâ€™t, we were brought up not to stare at people, so youâ€™d kind of be looking out of the side of your eye, but we were frightened at the same time cos we were never told in school . . .
Jenny: It was different.
Pat: . . . about people with other cultures, me mum done her best with religion, that kind of a culture, but we werenâ€™t taught about what people wore or nothing, and the highlight of our week used to be going down to Grampy Street . . .
Jenny: Oh, yeah.
Pat: . . . to get all the herbs and spices, cos me mum cooked everything Italian . . .
Pat: . . . and weâ€™d go down there and the smells, you know, were, oh, they were gorgeous . . .
Jenny: Oh, wow!
Pat: . . . I mean, there was a lot of people, you see, on Grampy Street, but at one time, it was such a cosmopolitan street, and there was no bitterness or anything else, it was just the smells and . . . oh, it was lovely, you could but everything down there, coffee beans, and the man would grind them for you, the flour as well . . .
Pat: . . . one, one of the shops had a, a flour grinder, and you, youâ€™d near choke to death watching him, cos he used to just throw it on, and youâ€™d have your head over . . (Jenny laughs), youâ€™d get a face full of flour dust!
Jenny: Oh, wow, so that was all goods . . .
Pat: Yeah . . .
Jenny: . . . coming in from the docks . . . ?
Pat: . . . yeah, yeah.
Jenny: . . . and things like that?
Categorised under: Social Life