I’ve not posted any old photographs for a while, and when I saw these three, of my home city of Manchester, being shared on Facebook I thought that I would share them with you.
As you know, I love these old black and white pictures, and if there is a local connection then so much the better.
Typical kids on a typical Manchester street, 1947. Could have been my Dad’s street-he would have been seven at this time. Kids played out, got mucky, took supplies of jam butties and water, and, did you catch that first bit –they played out.
Bed time 1947. I’ve heard all of the stories: everybody crammed into one bed, coats on top as covers, ice on the inside of the windows. We today, with one-switch central heating, able to stretch out (starfish) in a bed toasted by an electric blanket, sweltering away like a boil in the bag Kipper, we just don’t know we are born.
Kids’ play, Manchester, 1950’s.
It was on a lamppost such as this that my Mum broke her collar-bone on. Or, rather, off. Not having the luxury of a rope swing or seat, she jumped off a wall to grab hold of one of the ornamental arms (here just out of view, being near the top), caught it with one hand but missed with the other, did a somersault that any trapeze artist would have been proud of, and then crashed onto the hard floor.
Days later, a neighbour asked my Gran: “How is your Lilian? She didn’t half hit the floor with a bang!”
She replied “She is okay, but she has broken her collar-bone. It is disgusting that people will just drop banana skins on the floor,” (that old slapstick chestnut, or rather, banana), “for someone to slip on.”
The neighbour, leaning on her door jamb and folding her arms in full busybody pose, said:
” Banana skin? She was swinging on the lamppost and fell off.”
My Gran, formidable and widowed, bringing up three children alone, later said to my mum “You just wait! I won’t hit you now-I will wait until you’ve had your plaster taken off!”
There’s nothing like a mother’s love when you are hurting is there?