Emma Jane Clark

Emma Jane Clark

Postby PanBiker » Wed Jul 24, 2013 10:47 pm


TAPE 78/AK/01 Side 1.



Emma Jane Clark

(This tape has been recorded mono because Mrs Clark is very deaf. The
interviewer had to sit very close and shout the questions. In these conditions stereo
was not an advantage.)

We'll start now, and then as I say, don’t worry about this thing. It's running now but it doesn’t matter. It means nothing. Now, what’s your full name Mrs Clark?

R- Emma Jane Clark.

Aye. It’s a lovely name is that. Vera says if ever she has another child she is going to call it Emma Jane. Well, I keep telling her I want to have another one but I think she thinks she’s passed it. So, when were you born Mrs Clark?

R- July 26th 1895.

Yes 1895, so that makes you 83.

R- I’ll be 83 next week, next Wednesday.

Oh well, that’s a real do. We’ll know when to send the birthday card now won’t we! It's right.

R- No ... my friends are taking me down to… so will this be on?

It doesn’t matter.


R- My friends are taking me down to, my bridge friends are taking me down to Sawley for lunch.

Oh, down to the Spreadeagle?

R- Yes, and then we are coming back here and they are bringing the sandwiches for tea and I haven’t to make any tea. And then we are going to play bridge and then have sherry and cake at night. That’s my 83rd birthday and this is the third time they have taken me. They took me when I was eighty, they took me when I was 82, and they are going to be taking me next week and I said “You haven't to do. I says I couldn’t be here when any of you are eighty!” But they insist so it’s very nice of them.

Well I mean, it just shows they think a bit about you doesn’t it? That’s all it is.

R- Yes, it's very nice of them.

That’s friends isn’t it?

R- Yes.

Now then, where were you born?

R – Weir, near Bacup, Lancashire.

Aye. Weir, That’s it aye. So your parents lived in Weir then?

R- Yes.

And how many, how long did you live in Weir?

R- I wasn’t 11 months old when I came here to Barlick. So I have lived here 81 years in June, last June.


That’s it aye. So where was your father born?

R- Weir.

He was born in Weir?

R- Yes.

And your mother?

R- Yes, my mother too.

And what did your father do for a living?

(5 min)

R- Well, they were farmers, they were farmers. There were four brothers. And my grandfather was called Tom Greenwood, Thomas Greenwood and these four brothers were always called Jim o’Tom’s [Mrs Clark’s father], Joe o’Tom’s, Jess o'Tom’s and Tom o’Tom’s. You know, those were the names and they were always known as that.

That's it, aye.

R- And my father was the choir master of the church, my uncle Joe was the Treasurer, my uncle Tom was the Secretary.


R- And my uncle Jess was the Deacon, a Deacon.


R- And my cousin was the choir master. No, my cousin was the organist and my mother and my two eldest sisters were in the choir. In the village church.

Aye. And that was the church, not the chapel?

R- The chapel.

Chapel. Aye, that's it. Aye.

R- Baptist Chapel.


Baptist, yes. So your father got married over there obviously.

R- Oh yes!

And you said they'd be farming and there were four brothers. Now unless it was a large farm there wouldn't be enough work for them would there?

R- No. Well my father went round the country selling drapery.


R- My uncle Tom had a painting and decorating business, uncle Jess had a farm of his own after he was married and uncle Joe learned dentistry in Colne. And he came to Colne and he was a dentist. And he also learnt my eldest sister’s husband and they went into partnership and he was Greenwood and Petty.

Aye, that’s it. So, when your father got married he must have, he evidently must have thought that it was, you know, it was time he made a move.

R- Yes. And my father was married twice. His first wife died. His first wife died and left two daughters, and then he married my mother and she had nine children. My youngest brother died when he was twelve years old. He had appendicitis and he went into a nursing home in Burnley and it was Dr Sinclair the specialist and it was before

there was anaesthetics you know, and it was cut out and it never healed. It just sapped his life away, never healed, and he died when he was twelve, and he was just ill for three year.

What year would that be, roughly?

R- Well I was 17.

If you were 17 that’d be 1912 wouldn’t it?

R- Yes it would be 1912, yes.

So your father …

R- Learned to weave when we came to Barnoldswick,

Oh, he learned to weave did he?

R- When we came to Barnoldswick. And we all went into the mills.

Were you the oldest child? How many children were …

R- No, I had three younger than me. My sister, my youngest sister next to me is now 80 and my next younger one is 77, Jessie. Jessie, and then my youngest brother, he died when he was 12.

So there’d be five older than you.

R- Yes, and then there were two step sisters, but we are like sisters.

Yes, that’s it. So all told, in the family there’d be 11 of you.

R- Yes, but I mean, the two eldest was married before, you know

(10 min)

Aye, yes, that's it. Before the second family started. That’s it. Have you any idea what your father's first wife died of?

R- No idea.


No, I was just wondering if she died in childbirth because a lot of women did.

R- No, because there were two. There were two girls. Perhaps just eight or nine, or something like that. Not that I know of, I don t know.

Yes, that’s it, I was just wondering because like, Ernie Roberts was saying that his mother actually had 11 children but only four of them survived. And he said it was, it was common he says, very very common then. He said it was terrible.

R- Yes. My youngest brother died of appendicitis.

Yes. So your father had moved across here with six children because you’d been born…

R- Yes.

And he came to Barnoldswick. Now, whereabouts did you live in Barnoldswick when you came?

R- In Forester’s Buildings. In Forester's Buildings, and we loved it.


Foresters Buildings.

Yes, that’s it. So, you would move into Forester’s Buildings in 1896 sometime.

R- Yes, June.

June 1896. Yes, and you say your father started weaving. Where did he weave?

R- Slater Edmondson at Long Ing. Yes he did, and two eldest, three eldest children, perhaps the four eldest. Yes I think there’d be the four eldest.


Yes, they were weaving as well. Oh no. The four eldest, that’s it I see it now. I see what you mean. Did any of the, were any of the children old enough to work when they came to Barnoldswick?

R- All the two, yes, there’d be three I should think. I should think there’d be three. There’d be my father’s, the two that my father had to his first wife.


R- And my oldest brother, and my eldest sister, I think they'd all be, they’d all …

Oh, so your step sisters came with you.

R- Oh yes. [But they were married?]

So you’d be a big family when you came across here,

R- Yes, yes.

And what age could you start working in the mills then? Can you remember?

R- Twelve.


R- Twelve, yes. And you went half time, yes.

That’s it yes. That’d be half time. Yes. So there you are, you are in Barnoldswick, there's seven of you and your mother and father. Now did your mother weave as well?

R- Well, no, she couldn't when she'd a family.

That’s it, she'd have that many to look after. That’s it. And when you were a child can you remember any relations ever living with you? Or lodgers?

R- No, no. Oh, but we were happy at Forester’s Buildings. We loved it. We didn’t want to go down Gisburn Road, we went into a new and a bigger houses but no, we children didn't want to go. We thought it was lovely [at Forester’s Buildings] and that was the last row of houses in Barlick then.

So below Forester’s Buildings it’d just be fields?

R- They were all fields, yes. There were just four cottages by the Catholic Church [Damside Cottages]

Yes, that’s it.


R- There’s four cottages, and then there were the Crow Nest Cottages, that's all apart from Henhouse Farm which is, you know, Henhouse Farm

Yes, Henhouse, aye. And so your mother was looking after the children. How old was your father when he died?

R- 69.

And when did he die?

R- well, I was married and Dorothy wasn’t born, I wasn’t expecting Dorothy and she is 52. It’ll be about 54 years since I should think, about 54 years.

About 1924 roughly then.

R- Probably, yes. Oh no… it was after that. No, it would be because I was married in 1920. Yes, it would be about 1924.

Yes. About 1924. How about your mother, how old was she when she died?

R- Mother was 73.

And when did she die?

R- Well, Shirley [One of Emma’s two daughters, Shirley and Dorothy] was about three and she is now 45 so it’ll be 42 years since she died.

So that’s about 1936. It is, it’s when I was born.

R- Yes, and Shirley was born in 1933.

Did any of your family leave Barnoldswick as they grew up? I mean, your brothers and sisters, did they leave Barnoldswick as they grew up or did they all stay in the town?

(15 Min)

R- Well, next to my oldest sister, my half sister she was, she lost her husband in the First World War and he died in the trenches only a month or two before the Armistice. She was so upset that she felt she couldn’t live in the same house so she lived in Denton Street. And we had an aunt and an uncle who lived in Bispham and he had a business so she went there to recover. She lived with her eldest


sister in Barnoldswick, her husband was a dentist, Bracewell Petty [In Denton Street]. And she lived with them till she recovered, after the shock of losing her husband. And then she went to an uncle and aunt in Bispham and stayed with them oh a few months and they were just building some new houses, and she decided she'd take one and take visitors in. She says “I can’t come back to Barlick.” And that’s what she did, and she lived there until she was 80 and then she was losing her memory, so we brought her back to Barnoldswick. We got her a bungalow by the Congregational Church in that .., and she lived there until she was 85.

So the house that you remember best then is Forester's Buildings. You know, out of the houses you lived in when you were a child.

R- Yes, and then when I was 11, in 1906, we went down into Ribblesdale Terrace in Gisburn Road and that was the first row of houses built down Gisburn Road.

Yes, Ribblesdale Terrace.

R- Yes, opposite the Catholic Church.

That’s it yes.

R- And Jessie my sister still lives there, my younger sister Jessie.


She does, doesn't she. Well, Forester’s Buildings, now I’ll ask you some questions about Forester's Buildings. This is where, as I say, some of these questions might seem a bit funny but it's things that people, nowadays you, they…

R- We were very happy as children there because there were a lot of families there.

That’s it yes. And now, this house, Forester's Buildings, how many bedrooms did it have?

R- It had two bedrooms and a very large attic.

Yes. And what other rooms were there?

R- Pardon?

What other rooms were there?

R- Well we had a living, a front room, a big room, oh it’d be as big as this, and the kitchen and then an outhouse you know?


R- Like built up to it, it was.

And can you remember any of the furniture?

R- Oh, we had a beautiful mahogany dresser, we called them dressers in those days. Oh I can’t remember anything else really. Chairs and tables, and …

It’s all right, It’ll all come back you know, it's funny how things'll come back to you.

R- Yes and we had a, you went in at the front door and you went straight into the house, and then there was a door into the, it was like an open square place and there was a door into the kitchen and a wide, you know, staircase and then a door into what we called the pantry but you went down steps to it.

(20 min)

Yes, an old fashioned pantry. Aye.

R- Stone floor in the kitchen.

Yes. How often did the parlour get used, you know the best room?

R- Oh, we lived in that!

You lived in that?

R- Yes.

And so you had your meals in there did you?

R- Yes.


And where did your mother do the cooking?

R- In the kitchen.

Yes, and where did she do the washing?

R- In the kitchen.

And did it have a bathroom that house?

R- No. no, we had tin bath, we had to be bathed with a tin bath.

In front of the fire?

R- Yes.

That’s it, aye. Did you have a special bath night?

R- Oh, Friday night.

Do you know, it’s a funny thing that everybody's bath night was Friday night. No I often laugh about it while I am doing these tapes because everybody got bathed on Friday night. I should think the sewage works were overloaded on Friday night because everybody were having a bath.

R- Yes.

That’s it.

R- And then on, when we went down on Gisburn Road of course we had a big bathroom and we could have a bath anytime we wanted then.

Aye, that’s it. Now, was the lavatory inside or outside?

R- Outside.


R- Yes.

And was it a water closet or a tippler?

R- No a tip…


R- They used to come out, you know, empty them.

They were emptied, what, once a week, the council come round.

R- Yes, that’s right.

That’s it, yes. And, did the house have piped water?

R- Oh yes. We had taps.

Now, did you have hot water?

R- No, not at Forester's Buildings. No, we had a [side] boiler, and an oven. That was in the living room, and also we had one in the kitchen.

(20 Min)

Yes, was that the old fashioned range with a set boiler at one side and the oven at the other?

R- Yes.

And you'd burn coal of course, Yes, that's it. Did you, did the house have a stair carpet?

R- Yes.

Well, they'd be stone stairs would they or were they wood?

R- No, they were wood stairs, yes. As far as I can remember they were.

Do you remember. Was it fairly common? I mean, a stair carpet. Did the neighbours have a stair carpet?

R- I should think so. Yes.

And how about …

R- And brass, thin brass rods you know? Right thin brass rods.

Yes. Polished?

R- Yes.

Yes, that's right. What sort of floor coverings were there in the rest of the house?

R- Well I think we had a coconut matting in the kitchen, and we had linoleum in the living room. And it was, I always remember when we got the last lot, it was that sort that was stamped through you know? You know, the pattern didn't wear off. We thought it was fine was that, it's more expensive you know?


R- And then, as we got older, we had a carpet square but it had to go down at weekends and it would come up on Sunday night.

I wonder, I wonder how many young folk nowadays take the carpet up on Sunday nights? How about peg rugs?

R- Oh yes we had pegged rugs.

Who made the rugs?

R- We had to do, you know, when we got older.

That’s it, everyone had a pegged rug or two. How about curtains?

R- Lace curtains? White lace curtains? Yes. And I can remember the first incandescent light. We were only children. Mantles, they were just ordinary gas before.

That’s it, just a fantail.

R- I remember me father putting this one up and we all stood round the table watching you know. And then, when he set it alight and it went black, they did you know, we said “You’ve gone and spoiled it!” And then of course it came white and brilliant. Oh it was lovely! I can remember that quite well and I wouldn’t be very old, I wouldn’t be above six or seven if I was that old.

Did you have gas in all the rooms?

R- Yes I think we had gas upstairs but not in the attic.

So you’d use candles?

R- For the attic they would, yes.

Can you remember going to bed with a candle?

R- No. We slept in the front bedroom, with two beds. Yes.

How about, so your mother would have gas in the house? Your mother would have a gas cooker would she? A gas stove?

R- No, I don’t think so, not at Forester’s Buildings, we had when we went down Gisburn. Road.

That’s it, yes. And did the neighbours have curtains as well? Did they have lace curtains as well?

R- Yes, they had lace curtains. And there were a manufacturer lived on Forester's Buildings - and it was Dugdales and they had a big family, like us. And there were a few families you know with children, that’s why we didn't want to move and go down Gisburn Road because there were nobody there we knew, you see. And we used to have such good times, play games you know. All the children used to play together and we were really happy there. [Johnson Dugdale, 2 Forester’s Buildings. Barrett Directory 1902]

What sort of games did you play?

R- Oh, shuttlecock and rounders, battledore and shuttlecock and rounders and ball, any kind of games. And there was always some children to play with apart from our own family,

(25 min)

Were there any children that your mother didn't like you to play with?

R- No, they were all nice. They were all nice decent people.

That's it. And did the women down there donkey stone the door step?

R- Oh yes, just edged it you know, just edged it. They didn’t do it all over.

Yes. How about sand on the floor?

R- I think I can just remember having sand on the kitchen floors. I told Jessie sometime and she said “I’m sure you can’t” I said I can just remember having sand on the kitchen floor.

Ernie can remember it in 1920.

R- Could he?

Yes, he even told me where he used to go and buy it. Mrs Walsh’s, and they were a greengrocers shop. Mrs Walsh’s they used to buy it, they used to, he said they used to change the sand once a week.

R- Yes. I think I can just remember its but only just. I wouldn’t be very old. I don't think I’d be above four or five.

Yes, so that’d be 1900, 1901.

R- Yes, because I know, and when I told Jessie she said “Well, I can never remember us having a sanded floor.” I said well I can just remember it, I'd be four or five, six or seven or so.

And when your dad first went modern and went on to the gas mantles? Can you ever remember moths coming and flying round them and breaking them ?

R- No, I can't remember that.

No, I have heard people talk about shutting the door in summer because you know, at night you know, if they had the door open, because if a big bomber came in you know, it’d break the gas mantle.

R- No, I don’t remember that.

How about the household rubbish, what happened to that?

R- Oh well, you had ash pit, and they came round and emptied them.

Now, when you say an ash pit, that’s not a dustbin.

R- It's a building next to the coal place. You know, the closets they were called in those days.


That’s it, yes.

R- And they used to come round emptying them.

So they'd empty ‘em, shovel them out.

R- No, there is a grate at the bottom. You know you went and put them in, it was open and you put it in. And at the outside in the street, there was an iron door and they lifted that out and scraped all the rubbish out.

And a fair bit’d get burned on the fire wouldn't it? So, a lot of rubbish that could be…

R- Oh yes. Yes a lot of rubbish that could be burned, but ashes and things like that went into ... it's called the ash pits.

Yes, that’s it. So really there’d very little thrown into the ash pit that could start to go bad and start smelling or anything like that.

R- Yes. Only things that you couldn't burn.

That's it, yes. And anything else 'd go on the fire.

R- Yes.

How often did your mother do the washing?

R- The weekly washing was done once a week but there’d be lots of bits done in between I should think.

That’s its yes. How long did it take her?

R- Oh, all morning.

You'd say what, three or four hours?

R- Yes, and I know when we got bigger we used to get off our work to help to wash. Have, you know, a day off.

It was a big job then, washing.

R- Oh it was a big job, yes.

And how did she do the wash?

R- Oh well, with a dolly tub and posser and rubbing the clothes. You know, rubbing, when they were anything really dirty you had to rub them. And I know, as children we used to have to go on t’posser a hundred times. I always remember that.

Was it a wooden posser or a copper one?

R- A wooden one, yes, with legs on.

Yes, that's it, with legs on. Aye that’s it. What sort of soap did she use?

R- Oh I should think Sunlight. As long as I can remember it was Sunlight soap. Compo washing powder. That was blue powder, I can remember that.

Aye Compo and Dolly Blue?

R- Oh yes, Dolly Blue and starch.

And starch, yes. And can you remember her using blanket soap?

R- No.

Have you ever come across that? That were soft soap, with camphor in it.

R- Yes, I have, I remember soft soap.


You’ll have seen it, won't you? In tins and it had little flecks of camphor. When they did the blankets once a year they very often used this blanket soap because it left them smelling a bit like moth balls you know?

R- Yes.

They used to think it were ... It's funny, I used to sell that when I was down at Sough, when I had that shop at Sough. It was good soap was that, good for your hair.

R- Yes, yes.

And ... how did she dry the clothes?

R- Well, outside if it was fine, but round the fire with, you know, about this height. You know, clothes right ... about four feet high.

And what did you call that? Did you call it a maiden?

R- Clothes horse.

Yes, clothes horse.

R- Clothes horse when we were children.

Have you ever heard one called the maiden?

R- Yes.

And did you have a, you know, the rack on pulleys above the fire?

R- Oh yes. But we had that in the kitchen.

That was in the kitchen? How did she iron it? The washing? You know…

R- Well with heaters you know? You put them in the fire you know? And then you put them in your iron. Yes.

So it was a box iron.

R- Yes, a box iron.

Like little blocks of cast iron.

R- Yes that’s right.

Yes, that's it aye. Did she ever have a gas iron?

R- Oh yes, later. Yes.

Did she like it?

R- Yes.

And what can you remember most clearly about washing day. You know, is there anything that sticks out in your mind about washing days?

R- Yes, having to poss.

How about the wringer?

R- Oh well, it was an old fashioned wooden one you know, wooden rollers, and a big handle and we’d to help to turn that as well. In our turns.

Can you remember anybody getting their fingers caught in the mangle?

R- I don't think so. I caught mine in me electric washer. My hand.

Is that right?

R- Yes ... and I can still feel it just there, and I got it up to, you know it went right up to there and I screamed murder, knocked it off. I’d, you know the presence of mind to knock it off. But a friend of mine, she did it and she tried to pull her handout, and she brought all the skin off her hand. You know. Oh she'd an awful hand.


Yes, now that's something that wouldn't happen with the old mangle isn’t it. Because you’d give up turning once you got in. Aye. Can you remember how your mother cleaned the house? You know, what she, when she was cleaning the house what did she use to clean?

R- We used to have to polish the furniture you know.

What did you polish it with?

R- Oh, furniture cream. It was in a bottle and it was like, like cream nearly. And black-lead the fire place, you know, black lead? And then there was brass fittings that was done with emery paper.

Yes. Now, there's a lot of people won't know what black leading is now. Black lead you see, you’d have black lead in a tin.

R- Yes.

What did you put it on with?

R- You put it on with the brush, and then you polished it with a brush and then you did it with a piece of velvet to make it shine.

That's it yes. You see that is something nowadays that people just don't know anything about. Was there, did your mother have a Ewbank? You know, carpet cleaner?

(35 Min)

R- Yes you know, but there was nothing like that when we were young, you used to go down on your hands and knees with a brush and a shovel if you’d a carpet.

That's it, yes. Or else a damp rag. Wiping it over with a damp rag.

R- Yes, but we had, we had a carpet sweeper when we went down Gisburn Road, when they came in, when they were made. But there weren’t any when we were little children, you know? No carpet sweepers.

And can you remember, was there anything that your mother paid special attention to when she was cleaning the house? You know, had she one piece of furniture that she really thought something of or anything like that?

R- Well I don't know. I know we always had to polish that sideboard and it was like glass, and it was mahogany. I always remember the top drawer, it was about so deep, and it was like bowed and it was lovely. It’d be worth something if we had it today would that.

Oh yes. And what sort of jobs did you and your brothers and sisters have to do, you know you’d have certain jobs that you did wouldn’t you?

R- Well, when we went down Gisburn Road I’d be about twelve. And when I was about fourteen my job was to clean the gas oven every week and clean the bathroom. And I did that till I was married.

While you were at Forester's Buildings was there anything...?

R- Well, we were too young really. Then you see, I'd be about eleven. We’d to run errands and do odd jobs, wash up, you know and things like that.

How about looking after the younger children. You know, like helping them to eat and what not, did you ... ?

R- Well, you see, Jessie’s seven years younger than me and Joe was only thirteen months younger. No, I can’t ever remember having to look after them.

Anyway, you’d run errands and what else…

R- Oh yes.

Did your father ever do any work in the house, you know, like mending
and decorating.

R- No. He was very musical was my father. He was. He was a choir conductor when he came to Barlick. At the Baptist Chapel down here and he’d taught me my first violin lesson when I was fourteen. And my younger brother, my youngest brother he taught him. And he used to play in the little orchestra in the Sunday School, about three or four of them. Jenny Hacking, do you remember? You know Sally Hacking don't you? Her younger sister, she played the violin and they were
Only, they wouldn't be above eight or nine. Just the hymns you know?

So what musical instruments were there in the house?

R- There were violins, violins. And he taught me at the same time, I was about fourteen, he taught me my first violin lessons. And then you see, I was growing up, I wanted to be going out, and I gave up. And then when, I was 20 I started with Mr Peckover taking violin lessons and he said I can tell you have played before. I says “Yes, but it's a good few years since” and I was playing in the orchestra in three months. Barnoldswick Orchestra.

(40 Min)

Was there an orchestra in Barnoldswick?

R- Yes. A very good orchestra. They used to have one concert a year and they always used to have a tip top star you know? And they used to have players to come to help with the ...

Right. Did, your family own their house?

R- Yes.

And have you any idea how much they paid for that house? In those days?

R- We didn't own the one in Forester’s Buildings we paid rent for that. I think it was
Four and six a week.

Four and six a week, aye.

R- And it belonged to Dugdale and he was a manufacturer in Barlick then.

Where were they, where was he manufacturing, Dugdale?

R- Wellhouse.


That’s it, yes. Wellhouse. That's Calf Hall Shed company.

R- It's this side. Not where Rolls Royce is. There were two down this side, up to the dam.

That's it, yes.

R- It were Dugdale and Dewhurst.

Yes, and was he a good landlord?

R- Very good. We were very good friends.

Oh that makes all the difference doesn't it. And did your mother ever do any work in the house to make a bit of money for herself?

R- No, I don’t think so. No, she'd enough to do with a big family.

That’s it, yes. Can you remember anybody in the neighbourhood doing anything like that? You know, like child minding or taking washing in or doing a bit of sewing or ...

R- Well, not on Forester's Buildings, no. There was a lady who lived at the end, a maiden lady, and she was a dressmaker and she had a shop window and that and there was no causeway then you know.

Which end was that. The end the greengrocer’s at now or the other end?

R- Up to the road which is the end of Forester’s Buildings you know. It’s two flats now, it’s been altered you know into two flats. Don't you know?

Yes, that’s it. So that’s the end that faces what's now the new church.

R- That was on the main road and the road was right up to the houses, there was no causeway and those three shops, the china shop, well it was one house was that and there was no door, you’d to go through a gate at the side and the door was round at the front. But it was an old cottage then, and then there was a blacksmith shop round the back of Skipton Road. You know where the sweet shop is in Skipton Road?


R- Well, on there and round the back was a blacksmith shop and we used to spend hours and hours.

What was the name of the blacksmith? Do you remember?

R- Jenny, Jenny, wait a minute, I know her well enough.

It’s right, it’ll come back to you, it’ll come back to you. Don't worry. And that house of course, is still standing.

R- Oh yes. And then it was made into one little shop at the end at first and then of course it was made into that big china shop later on, but I was going to school I should think when there was just a little shop at the end and they sold homemade toffee.


So on Forester's Buildings, which was actually your house?

R- Four, number four.

Number four. Now what’s that now, number four. Is that part of, you know, what's the china shop now?

R- No.

No. No, that's it, Forester’s Building’s on the front.

R- It's that row ...

Yes that's it.

R- And there was also two cottages behind you see, but they knocked' the rows down and also they knocked two of the houses down at the end of Forester’s Buildings to make the new road.

That's it, when they did away with the railway.

R- They did away with four houses there.


R- They shouldn't have done.

No, and good houses and all.

R- Because they'd have all that room, there was all that room further on.

And so your mother’d have her first gas stove after you'd moved out of Forester’s Buildings, when you'd moved out ...

R- She’d have what?

Her first gas stove.

R- Yes.

Yes when you moved to Gisburn Road. Did she make her own bread?

R- Yes, up to her last illness.

And how much did she make at a time?

R- Oh she'd bake at least twice a week. I couldn't tell you how much but she baked even when Jessie, my younger sister lived with her. You know, she always lived with her, she never had a home of her own. She lived with mother because she was left on her own. And she baked right up to her last illness, baked her own bread and it was delicious.

Oh, it’s an art.

R- She used to bring me a loaf up, she came up here for her tea every Wednesday and she always brought me a a cob of home baked bread, it were lovely.

She’d bake cakes as well?

R- Oh yes but she didn't do a lot of baking in her later years because Jessie used to bake, ‘cause Jessie lived with her.

Yes. But when you were children she’d bake all the cakes and pies then?

R- Oh yes.

Any particular sort of cake?

R- Mostly pastry. you know, and fruit tarts and currant pasties. Sometimes a sandwich for Sunday tea.

And how about jam and marmalade?

R- No I don’t think she ever did, made jam and marmalade.


R- Oh yes we used to make pickles. Pickled onions.

Who topped and tailed them?

R- Oh, I expect we had to do that!

Did she ever make homemade wine and beer?

R- No.

Did she ever make any of her own medicine?

R- No. I don't think we ever needed any.

Aye, that’ll be right.


SCG/10 January 2003
6,125 words


TAPE 78/AK/01 Side 2.


Now, the next thing now is food. What did you usually have for your breakfast?

R- When?

During the week.

R- Now?

No, when you were at Forester’s Buildings,

R- Oh, well we always had porridge.


R- Always had porridge. And bread and syrup, something like that, you know?

Yes, you didn't have salt on your porridge?

R- Pardon?

You didn't have salt on your porridge, then.

R- No, we had milk on our porridge.

Oh, that’s it aye. Scotsmen you know, they just have salt on.

R- Yes. Well I put salt in my porridge when I’m making it.

That's it, yes.

R- Always, we always have done at home.

Yes, aye, and how about Sunday dinner?

R- Oh well, we always had a good Sunday dinner, we always had a roast. We had to have for the lot of us you know? And there was three or four of them working you see? I wouldn't say we were poor, not poverty, we always had enough to eat. We were, we didn’t get a lot of clothes but what we got we got good and they had to last and they’d be handed down from one to another.

That's it. And what did you usually have for your other dinners, during the week?

R- Well bread and jam and homemade parkins and things like that. You know, bread and jam and … Saturday we always had, my father always made tea on Saturday and we always had Palethorpes sausages and tomatoes, and he used to do them in front of the fire, you know with the old fashioned top bar and the sausages on a toasting fork and the tomatoes on a dish in front of the fire. On the top bar, and my father always made Saturday tea and that’s what we always had and it was a real treat, and they were Cambridge sausages and they were … Sausages today don’t taste like sausages to what they did.

No, you’re quite right, quite right. Did you usually have supper before you went to bed?

R- Oh not much supper, no. We’d have perhaps sometime, if my mother had made biscuits we’d get a biscuit, a few biscuits, and if we didn’t, well we’d have perhaps bread and jam or bread and syrup but we always had a bit of supper.


How about a drink, you'd drink tea.

R- Yes, we’d drink tea at bed time, yes.

How about coffee or cocoa?

R- Oh well we had cocoa more than coffee when we were young and then as we got older we had coffee.

What sort of coffee was it, can you remember?

R- Oh well it was ground coffee you know, ground coffee, what you used to brew in a jug. Not powdered, there was no powdered coffee in those days when we were young. You used to buy it loose, a quarter of coffee or half a pound of coffee and it was loose and it was good, it was good coffee.

Yes, nothing but proper coffee then were there? Did you have a garden or an allotment?

R- Oh no we hadn’t, we had a garden, we’d a big garden at Forester’s Buildings. When you go there's a gate if you notice that goes down the middle [opens off Skipton Road] , and then at this side we grew red currants up to the wall and then we’d two rows of gooseberry bushes and rhubarb on that side of the yard and then we had a cold frame but


we never had anything in it, we used to play in there when we were little. They used to put me in there to play in summer you know, we never grew anything in it. I can remember that as plain as anything and I can remember playing in it and I wouldn't be above two. Then we had flowers

(5 min)

in the other garden. And I know we had a big rose tree with white roses on, a right big rose tree, and it was white roses with a pink, like a pale pink centre. I can always remember that because my friend always used to came down. And one of my friends she had a bicycle, she was only about ten. Well that was, it was the only bicycle in Barlick! And she used to say “You can have a ride on my bicycle if you'll give me a few of your roses!” And oh, I'd have done anything for a ride on her bicycle! I’d have, I’d have given everything I had!

And that there, it’d be a scented rose that?

R- Pardon?

It’d have a nice scent that rose?

R- Oh they were lovely.

That’s something they have bred out of roses now isn’t it. The scent. They look nice but they don’t smell.

R- Oh they’d a beautiful scent.

No, they have no scent like the old ones. You’d still have the fruit that you grew in the gardens like the red currants and gooseberries? You’d eat them yourselves?

R- Oh they had to be used, yes. They had to be.



And did you have any hens or anything like that?

R- No.

How about pets?

R- Oh, my oldest brother always had a little dog. He was mad on dogs. He always had a dog until he got married and then he had an Alsatian when he got married.

What did he use the dogs for? Did he go ratting or rabbiting or anything?

R- No. He just liked a dog, he liked an animal, yes.

He just liked a dog. What kind of puddings did your mother make?

R- Oh rice puddings and steak and kidney puddings. That was a highlight of the week when we were [young], but something I could never eat. I could never eat steak pudding. The only thing I couldn't eat. I couldn't do with them and they used to love them and she’d always to make me something different. And even today I can’t do with the soft crust.

How much milk did your mother get a day?

R- Oh I don’t know. I can't remember. I was only, we were only young you know?

How was it delivered?

R- Oh the milkman used to come round with it in his milk float and they had those big, you know, you have seen them on farms. And then you used to go and take your jug out.

Aye. Big twelve gallon kits.

R- Oh we always got a quart a day at least.

And did your milkman just come once a day or did he come twice?

R- Morning and night. Morning and night. Yes.

Aye, yes that's right. Aye.

R- And it was Duxbury [Oliver. Grandfather to Harold Duxbury and father to William], he had a farm. You know where the Knoll is?


R- Well, Wilfred Nutter lived there didn't he? He married the farmer’s daughter that had that farm just below, just before you turn the corner to go past the Knoll. There is a road up to the farm there. Well, if it's still there.

Aye, Crook Carr, aye.

R- Yes. Well that was the farmer.

Yes. Well the old farmhouse isn’t used now. It’s that new farmhouse on the side of the road now.

R- Yes it is, yes it is.

Because the roof fell in if you remember. And did you use to have butter?

R- Oh yes we always used to have butter.

Yes. Did you ever have margarine?

R- No, we never had margarine. I don’t know whether it was… you could buy margarine then, could you?

Well, during the first world war you could, but I don’t know about before.

R- Oh well, during the first world war we were grown up then. No, we always had butter.

Aye. How about dripping?

R- Yes I think we used to get dripping sometimes. Yes, we did, and we put salt on it.

That's it yes. And what sort of fruit do you think you had most often?

R- Oranges, and apples.

And what sort of vegetables?

R- Oh well, cabbages and peas mostly I think.

And, there's a list of foods here. There's some different foods. Just tell me if you ever had them you know, or if you had them every week or once a month or never. Anything like that. Bananas.

R- Oh well, we’d have bananas and we’d often have those for Sunday tea time after we’d had our, you know we used to have a bit of extra on Sundays and we’d have those after with custard on, cut up with custard on. And sometimes we’d have them for tea during the week, a banana cut up with custard on and bread and butter.

(10 min)

Now then, you just said something there, ‘and bread and butter with it’. Now when you had fruit at tea time, did you quite often have bread and butter with the fruit?

R- Oh yes. During the week especially. But sometimes at the weekend we’d have a bit of ham or something like that and if we’d have any meat left from dinner we’d get ham you know, we’d have it for tea. That were when there were four or five of them working you see?

That’s it.

R- I can't remember much when we were about two or three you know but you see there was some a lot older than me, were some of them you know? My step sisters they'd be 18 or 20 years older than me. You see?

Now, about rabbit? Did you ever have rabbit?

R- Oh yes, and my brother used to keep rabbits, but for pets. We had a shed in the back yard.

Aye, and did you ever eat any of those rabbits?

R - No.

Oh, I was just thinking that. Fried foods, did you have much stuff fried?

R- No I don't think so. No.


How about fish?

R- Yes, we’d have fish occasionally. We’d have fish occasionally and that would be fried and sometimes it was done in the oven, done in the oven in milk you know?

When your mother got fish, where did she get it from?

R- Where was the fish shop? There was a fish shop in Barlick but I can’t, I’m just wondering where it was, in those days.

I'm just wondering whether anybody came round with fish with a cart.

R- Yes they did, yes they did, they used to come round, but there used to be a fish shop and it was Sam Yates on Church Street. Yes it was Sam Yates’s next to where Harry Tinner’s shop used to be, do you know? Harry Tinner’s, well it was next door.

And how about cheese?

R- Oh well, my father always liked cheese and we used to have, he used to have oatcake, you know that soft oatcake and you hung it on the clothes rack to dry, and he’d have that and cheese for his supper.

Did your mother make the oatcake?

R- No. They used to, a man used to come round selling it, and he made it himself.

Yes, Cow heel?

R- Yes, I remember them having cow heels.


R- Not often tripe. No, I can never remember having tripe at home.

Trotters and. black puddings?

R- Trotters and cow heels but I can never remember having tripe, no.

How about black puddings?

R- No.



R- Oh yes we always had eggs. I can remember when we always had eggs. We’d have an egg for our tea sometimes but that was a treat you know, if we had eggs for our tea. It was a treat if we had eggs for our tea when I was little.


R- Well you see, I can’t remember having tomatoes when I was right little. I can’t remember having tomatoes. I can’t remember seeing tomatoes when I was very little but when I was going to school I remember tomatoes then and we had them. We used to have them out with salt and vinegar on with our bread and butter.

(15 min)


R- No, we had no grapefruit when we were young.

How about sheep’s head?

R- No, I can’t ever remember having sheep’s head.

Did your mother ever buy tinned food?

R- Tinned fruit?

Well, tinned fruit or food of any sort you know, anything that was in tins.

R- Well, tinned salmon, we used to get tinned salmon. Yes, pears, tins of pears but you know they were always the large tins. There were no little tins came into our house, for a big family.

Can you ever remember any of the tinned food being bad?

R- No.

How about Christmas dinner? What did you have for Christmas dinner?

R- Well I don't remember having turkeys when we were young, but I remember having goose. I remember having goose, but I can't remember having turkey when we were young. Not till we got grown up. And then we’d have them, but I can remember having a goose at Christmas when we were young and sometimes pork. Christmas pudding, homemade you know, in a cloth.


Aye. Made three months before.

R- Yes.

Can you remember what was your favourite food when you were young? Was there anything that was a favourite ?

R- Well, I could eat anything, I enjoyed anything.

Except steak and kidney pudding!

R- Yes, that was the only thing, the only thing I can never eat.

It's funny is that.

R- And they all looked forward to it. My mother always used to make them on Wednesday, and she’d always to make me something different. I think sometime when I was young I must have been put off them or something you know? And I could never, ever eat one.

I think everybody is the same. I think everybody has something. I know our family all used to like junket, you know curds and whey. Oh and I couldn't eat it. I couldn't face it.

R- I never had any.

Oh no. You know rennet and milk you know. Oh I couldn't eat it, it’s like blancmange, when you cut it, the water runs out of it.

R- Yes. I think that's about the only thing I couldn't eat was beefsteak pudding and all the others used to look forward to that day.

Aye, that’s it. Did your father come home for all his meals?

R- No, they used to stop in, he used to stop in for his dinners when we were little but not after, not when we got bigger. Of course he died when he was 69 and he’d been, he’d been ill for a few years, not so well. So I should think he’d only be about 63 or 4 when he started being ill. He was a very quiet man was me father, very quiet, very musical and wouldn’t say a wrong word about anybody. No.


Did you over take his food into the mill for him when he …

R- When we were children we used to take his dinner into the mill, when we were little.

And what did you take in for him, can you remember?

R- Oh, I can’t remember. It used to be sandwiches or something. Beef sandwiches or ham sandwiches, something like that.

Did your father always have the same to eat as the rest of the family or did he have something special?

R- No, he had what we had. Yes.

That's it. Can you ever remember your mother going short to feed you?

R- No, I can never, never remember us going short of food. No.

And who usually did the shopping for the family?

R- Well, we all had to do, we all did it. You know, the older ones, and then as we grew we’d to do it.

How often did you go shopping?

R- Oh two or three times a week. Sometimes every day. You know, when there’s a big family of you?

Yes, well, of course in those days, what people forget nowadays is that in those days there were no such a thing as fridges.

R- No. Oh no. You had to get your stuff fresh every day, and it was only a village then was Barlick, you know?

That’s it.

R- There was nothing up here, do you remember? There was nothing past the Greyhound, nothing down Park Avenue. There was just those three houses, you know, on this side of Park Avenue at the top. Nothing else when we were young. I can remember all those houses being built.

(20 min)

Yes, we’ll get on to the building later because you have seen some building, you must have done. Where did your mother usually get her vegetables?

R- Well, Sam Wallace’s just in Newtown and the Co-op used to sell vegetables as well, we were, oh we were big Co-oppers, me father were big Co-op, we were big Co-op shoppers.


Did your mother ever go shopping in the market?

R- We hadn’t a market. We’d no market when we young.

How about, and when I say you know, I mean there used to be a market down Butts at one time.

R- Oh well that was ... that was after I was married, its long after I was married.

Of course it would be because that market, there you are you see, because that market didn’t start down there until the cinema was burnt down, did it?

R- No, and then that used to be a fair. The fairs used to come there, roundabouts and stalls and things like that, and they always used to come to those post office buildings. Do you know, where the post office is?


R- Well, the fairs used to come there because when we lived at Forester’s Buildings we used to be looking out of the bedroom window at night and we could hear it, hear the music from it, you know?

That’s it yes. And your mother shopped at the co-op?

R- Yes.

And have you any idea why she shopped at the co-op?

R- Well, for the divi, the divi was very nice you know? It was paid half yearly I think wasn't it? You got, cheques you know. It was quite a n ice bit of money at the divi and I think that was one reason why.

That’s it. [The next question was whether there was any difference in prices between the corner shop and the town centre] Well, really this question doesn’t apply because there was only the town centre.

R- That’s all there was, only Church Street, Newtown and Rainhall Road, and there was nothings down Albert Road you know? There were all houses there, just the post office and then there was Sneath’s shop after, and then Willan’s [Thomas Willan] the painter after that and then all the others there were houses and it was a field where the co-op buildings are. No Frank Street.


That’s it. When you say that your mother went to the co-op then, those buildings wouldn’t be built then. Where was the Co-op in Barlick before they built the new building?

R- There’s that down Manchester Road, and then, when they started building down Skipton Road, that was when we lived in Forester’s Buildings, I think those would be up just before Ribblesdale Terrace, and it was the corner shop where the carpet shop is now.

Yes, what's the carpet shop now. That’s right. [On the corner of Gisburn Road and Skipton Road katy corner to Gisburn Road School.]

R- Yes, that was a Co-op and then there was the Co-op building near Twenty Row. You know, you go down Station Road and then you go up, well, we used to call it Twenty Row [Wellhouse Street] I don’t know what the name is. Well, past the fire station and then there’s a row of houses, well you go behind there and then the Co-operative Buildings were there. [Co-operative Street]

R- You know where Jack Bennett’s the butcher’s shop is? [22 Wellhouse Road in 2003] The shop is downstairs from the road? Well, across there's an opening isn’t there. And you can come out on Rainhall Road. [Wellhouse Street]

That's right.

R- Well, after the first row of houses there’s a Co-operative building, there was a co-operative building there. [Co-operative Hall. 1900 and shops on the east end of the row]

Aye, I didn't know that.

R- Yes, there was a clogger's shop and a grocery shop. That was a co-op there and the Co-operative Hall, there’s a Co-operative hall still there.

Yes, that's its aye. Can you remember if the shops used to give credit apart from the co-op?

R- I don’t think so. I don't know, I can't remember. I mean we never got anything we couldn't pay for.

That’s right. Was there anything that you used to eat then you know, that you ate when you were young which you can’t get now?


R- Well there used to be quite a few dressmakers and there aren't many now are there?

That’s right, yes.

R- We always used to get our clothes made and the lady at the end of Forester’s Buildings, she was a good dressmaker and also her sister. You know Norman Bowker, of Windle and Bowker? Well, Aunt Sarah, who used to live at Forester’s Buildings, she was their aunt, she was Norman and Edith and his sister’s aunt. They spent all their holidays down there, and they liked to come to play with us because there was a lot of children. Their mother was a dressmaker on Rainhall Road, the corner shop before you turn up to Church School.

Aye, it's a tailor’s shop now.

(25 min)

R- It's what?

A tailor’s shop now isn’t it? On Rainhall Road?

R- Yes, you know where? Before you turn…

The opposite corner to the chemist. [I have an idea I was wrong here, I think it was the cottage on the corner of York Street.]

R- Yes well, they lived at this side, as you turn round the corner to go up to Church School. Well they lived in that cottage and the shop. That was Norman Bowker’s mother was Aunt Sarah’s sister, [Elizabeth Bowker] and she was a good dressmaker. Aunt Sarah used to make our clothes when we were little. And Mrs Bowker and Miss Hargreaves, you remember Lizzie Hargreaves? Do you remember Harry Tinner’s shop? Well they used to live there did this sort that worked for Mrs Bowker and then they came to that high house in Montrose Terrace, the end house. Miss Hargreaves and her three sisters, they’re retired today, none of them were ever married.

Which is Montrose Terrace?

R- By the New Church, down Skipton Road, that high one.

That’s it, yes.

R- Well, I’ll tell you who lives there, the people from the wool shop in Frank Street live there.

Aye, Barbara….

R- Yes, I know.

Bowker, not Bowker, yes, yes.

R- Yes, well they live in that house where those three sisters of Harry Tinner’s come to live, when they sold the shop on Church Street and she left £28,000 did Lizzie Hargreaves.

It was a lot of money in them days.

R- Well I mean she’s been dead for about eight or nine years and she was the last of the three old maids. There were three sisters and they never got married.

How much housekeeping money do you think your mother would need to keep the house running. Do you know, do you have any idea?

R- Well my father was working, my two oldest sisters were working, my oldest brother and my eldest sister you know. I’m reckoning two step-sisters, you know me father’s two daughters before he married my mother. There was them and me father and me eldest brother and me eldest sister. Well, I should think they’d have about six or seven pounds when we were little. Because when I was born they’d all be working.

Yes and would they be tipping up? Or boarding?

R- They'd be tipping up perhaps till they got about twenty you know, and then they boarded.

Yes, that's it. Aye. So really in a way, once you'd reared, if you had a big family, once you got over the …

R- The children growing up, when the family started working.

Yes, it could be a good thing.

R- Well, you could be, you could, you were comfortable. Yes, you were comfortable.

That's right, yes.

R- I can never remember us being very poor. Because you see, there were four or five of them working.

That’s it, yes. It’s very interesting is that actually. Obviously, you’ll remember the first world war, you’d be nineteen when it started.

R- I was just nineteen and I was in Douglas.

On the Isle of Man?

R- I was at Douglas on me holidays and we came back and it was Bank Holiday weekend and war was declared on the Monday as we came back.

Well, I’ll ask you more about the first world war later. Just a couple of questions now about… Can you remember food being short during the first world war?

(30 min)

R- During the first world war, I remember it being short during the second, I was nineteen wasn’t I. Not really, not as bad as during the second world war I don’t think. Perhaps it didn’t last as long as the second world war did it?

No, that’s it. Can you remember queuing for food in the first world war?

R- No I can’t remember queuing for food.

Do you think there was any difference in the way the family fed during the first world war than before? Do you think you were better fed during the war than before? Or would you say there was no difference.
R- Between the first world war and the second do you mean?

No. Would you say there was any difference between the way you fed during the first world war than before the first world war.

R- Oh well, I should think not as good as we were before the war. I shouldn’t think so as far as I can remember. But you see, I was at that silly age, growing up when all you thought about was dancing and having a good time, boys!

That’s it, well we’ll get on to that! We’ll go now from food to the other essential, clothing. Did your mother ever make any of your clothes?

R- No I don’t think so.

How about knitting?

R- Oh she’d knit for all of us from being born I should think. She knit all our stockings till we’d been at school a few years. She was always knitting, she’s knit and crocheted all her life.

That’s knitting and crocheting. Did she ever do any tatting?

R- No.

Did she have a sewing machine?

R- Oh yes.

What sort?

R- A Singer. And my sister had it up to her dying about four years, three years since. A Singer sewing machine.

Aye. An it would still be a good machine.

R- It was still a good machine.

Aye. Did your mother mend your clothes for you?


R- Oh yes, yes.

Was she a good darner?

R- Yes, she was a good woman was my mother. Yes, she was. She thought a lot about all of us, she was a very sensible woman I should say.

A good mother.

R- Yes she was a good mother.

When your mother darned socks, did she do them with a mushroom? Can you remember?

R- Pardon? ... Yes, yes.

Was it a wooden mushroom?

R- Yes, and I still have one.

That’s it aye. Did you ever have any passed-on clothes?

R- Oh yes, when we were little, yes we did. I always remember my sister Olive next. younger to me, she talks about it yet, she says “I never forget going to school'” she says “Me pockets were nearly at the bottom of me frock! I felt right ashamed.” She says it were one of our Grace’s cast-off coats and she was about twenty years old. “It was a lovely coat, I’ll never forget going to school, the pockets were nearly at. the bottom!” She still talks about it.

You don’t forget these things, you don’t forget these things. And you have already told me that a lot of your clothes were made by…

R- Best clothes and then we had to wear hand-me-downs as well you know?

That’s it, yes

R- But if we got anything new we had it made.

Yes that's it. Now, what happened to your old clothes?

R- Well they were worn out we finished with them. They wouldn’t be worth giving away I don’t think when we’d finished with them.

So have you. any idea what did happen to them?

R- Well, I should think they'd be given to the rag man.

Yes, that's it. The rag and bone man.

R- Yes. Perhaps some of the good things were kept for patches, patching you know.

Yes. Andy if you gave, if you gave anything to the rag and bone man what would he give you back for them?

R- Oh, a scouring stone.

That’s it, donkey stone, that's it. Can you remember there being two sorts of donkey stone, hard and soft?

R- I can remember brown and white.

Yes, that's it. I'm not cure whether that’s what Ernie Roberts meant, he were talking about two different sorts, he said hard and softy and I wondered whether perhaps he meant brown and white do you know? [White was usually hard and brown or yellow was a softer stone.]

R- Well, there's, there was brown and white.

Yes, that's it. Yes I can remember you know. I can remember them myself. I can remember going for them myself, Can you ever remember anybody in Barlick, not necessarily at Forester’s Buildings because there wasn’t a causeway there, but not only doing the doorstep but the kerb edge as well? Have you ever seen it?

R- No, not the kerb edge.

(35 min)

Aye, I have seen it done, but I think it's only like on back streets in towns you know. They do say you know, that in Dukinfield there used to be one street where they used to blacklead the tramlines.

R- I have never heard that before.

I have heard that many a time you know. I don’t know whether it's true. I can imagine it.

R- Yes.

Blackleading the tram lines! Anyway we’d better not get on to that. When you went to school what did you wear for school?

R- Well, when we were little we wore pinafores you know, on the top of our dresses. And I remember when we went to school at first we had home knit socks up to there, not long stockings.

No. Up to below your knee?

R- Yes, and then home knitted ones.

And did you wear shoes or clogs?

R- Oh clogs, yes.


R- Clogs with irons on, yes. I always had mine with brass nails. They used to have brass toe plates. But Mrs Edith, Norman Bowker I have been telling you about and his sister. Well their father [Binns Bowker, 32 Church Street in 1896 and York Street in 1902, Barrett’s Directory] , there is a little antique shop now isn't there, just round the corner where they used to live.

That’s right.

R- Well, he had a little, the father had a clogger’s shop, and Edith always had little brass nails round her clogs and everybody else had brass toe plates, and I said yes, I says “The next pair of clogs I get I’m having brass nails round, I'm not going to be common like everybody else!” And I always had [brass] nails round mine after.

And when you went to school those clogs would have to be polished.

R- Oh yes, black polish, yes.

And who polished them?

R- Me myself. And I used to, when I was about fifteen, every Monday night I used to clean all the shoes in the house and in the summer I took them in the back yard to do them. Me mother says “Out you go in the back yard to do them!” I hadn't been told to do them, I hadn't been told to do but you know some of them wouldn’t bother to clean the shoes, some of the younger ones, and every Monday night I used to clean all the weekend shoes.


It's a very satisfying thing, cleaning boots. I like cleaning boots I do.

R- Yes I did. I used to clean all the shoes and I used to polish them with a piece of velvet.

That’s it. I cleaned mine the other day. Many a time I’ll go and get me boots and get out and clean them. And I always have brown boots, I like a good pair of boots you know. And I cleaned all me brown boots, and I have about four or five pairs and. I said to Vera, “Look at them, they look just like a row of conkers!”

R- Well I have spilt some fat on mine, look.

Aye, it'll soak away.

R- Will it?

Oh aye.

R- I washed it and washed it. Janet brought me some sausage up this morning and I said to Vera [Vera Graham, my wife used to clean for Mrs Clark and Janet, my daughter, did shopping for her.] “I have one slice of bread in the house. That’s all I have, and I’ve no meat, only what I have in tins. I’ll tell you something, you know Jessie, my younger sister? She’s getting very forgetful, she is. She is bursting with health and energy but she is getting very forgetful. So on Friday night I rang her up, because I meet her every Sunday, she either comes up here or I go down there for tea. Well I was going down on Sunday so I said to Jessie, “Will you get me some ham from the delicatessen shop just above.” They cook it themselves on the bone and it’s really delicious. And she said “Yes, I’ll get you some.” And I said “And a brown loaf from the shop next door but one I think it is. And then it’ll do for next week like because the shops are going to be closed.” [It was the annual holidays and most shops closed all week the first week.] So I went down for tea on Sunday and I said “Before I forget I’ll pay you for me ham and brown bread.” She said “I’ll get it out.” Well, she went in and no brown bread in the bread pot so I says “I’ll get me ham out of the fridge.” Well, there was no ham and there was about half a loaf of brown bread. She said “Oh well, I’m sure I got them.” So, she always makes her tea ready and laid on the kitchen table and covered up so I lifted the cloth up and there was two plates covered with ham and I says “Well, this looks like ham. Is this the ham you got for me?” She says “Oh, it must be.” So I says “What about me loaf? You rang me up and told me you’d got them on Friday afternoon. You rang up and told me you’d got some ham and a brown loaf.” Well she’d only so much bread so she said “Well, just leave me a couple of slices and I’ll get some in the morning.” She forgot you know, it went clean out of her mind. It’s sad you know, it’s very sad you know.. I mean, to be losing your memory, she’s only 77. She rings up every Sunday and I ring her up on Saturday. I’ll say “Now it’s my turn to come down Jessie, or it’s your turn to come up.” She rings every Sunday morning to ask who’s turn it is to come. She can’t remember, it’s very sad you know.

Oh it’s better than being, having bad health.

R- Oh but it’s not, it's not so nice, when you think you know. She was paying the rates twice two years since. She'd paid them you know. So after she paid them, she went up again to pay them you know. Well, it makes you a bit worried, you know? Doesn’t it?

Well, aye, yes. Anyway, did you wear a hat?

R- Oh yes, we all wore hats when we were young.

What sort?

R- Eh I don’t know. I remember getting a Merry Widow hat when I was about fifteen.

What's a Merry Widow?

R- Wide ones, like this you know.

Yes, with a wide brim.

R- Wide this way but not wide that. They were something new and they called them Merry Widow hats. They weren’t like big round ones, they were oval.

Oh, I see what you mean.

R- They were oval, long this way and not that. We thought we were somebody in a Merry Widow hat.

When you were going to school what age were you when you first went to school?

R- Well, I’d be about four I think.

Can you remember what length your skirts were then, when you first went to school. at four years old. How long were your skirts.


R- Oh they'd be down to there I should think.

Half way down, half way down. Below your knees.

R- Well, they'd be well below your knees yes.

Yes, that’s it.

R- Oh till, we never used to wear short dresses up to our knee. Because we used to wear knickers, bloomers we called them, with band round, you know, buttons on below the knees when we were young women.

Yes, that's it, yes.

R- Oh yes. and our skirt down to there about.

Yes, about half way down your lower leg.

R- Oh you never showed your knees.

That’s it, yes. Now, can you remember, when you were very young, were there a lot of people still wore what I call a full skirt. A skirt down to the floor?

R- I remember my sister wearing them. Oh yes, right to the floor and when they went out they used to hold the dresses, you know, the skirt, up like this to keep them from [dragging on the ground] if it was dusty or anything. They were long, they were right down to the shoe top, down to their ankles.

That’s it, yes. And, would you say then that it was usual for the, you know, the older women to wear long skirts?

R- Oh yes, everybody, all people, from about eighteen I should think.

Yes, how about the shawl?

R- Oh yes, they used to wear shawls when they went to the mill. I never wore a shawl but I can remember my older sister wearing one.

Would you say that wearing a shawl was almost a badge of the worker? If you wore a shawl were you automatically classed as somebody that was working?

R- Yes.

So in other words, beyond a certain social level people would never think to wear the shawl.

R- No.

Yes, that’s it.

R- And if they did, it would be a fancy one.

Yes, that’s it, an evening… Yes something like that.

R- Yes, a knitted one, you know? My mother used to crochet them you know? And they'd sit in the house with them on.


Yes that's it. If somebody was wearing a shawl for work, what would it be generally made of, would it be…

R- Wool, wool.

Yes, knitted or woven?

R- Woven. A fine cloth like, a fine cloth with a fringe on.

Yes, that’s it, yes. Those were the shawls I always remember but I was just wondering whether anybody wore knitted shawls.

R- No, not for work, not for mill girls. Mill people didn’t. I mean, if you had a knitted shawl it was usually to wear in the house when you were dressed up you know. My mother used to crochet them with fringes.


If your mother was dressed up, did she wear shoes or boots?

R- Oh they used to wear boots when I was little. And then they got to loose shoes you see.

Yes, because those boots would be buttoned?

R- Yes, buttoned boots. Yes, and I can remember when rinking boots came in, rinking, when roller skating came in. And they used to be, oh, some beautiful boots. My friend, she had some of the most beautiful brown leather shoes, I used to envy her of it. And we saw these shoes in a shop window and she used to get, she was an only child and she got beautiful clothes and my goodness, she got these beautiful boots and they were laced up top about there and then there were studs like. Do you remember them?

Yes, I’ve seen them yes.

R- Man’s boots, do you remember men’s boots? And they’d come about to there, beautiful soft leather, lovely. I can see them now, we’d only be about sixteen or seventeen.

Half way to the knees.

R- Yes, it’d be about up to there. Beautiful.

How much would a pair of boots like that cost then? Can you think? Have you any idea?

R- Oh they’d be…… [Tape ends}

SCG/13 January 2003
6987 words.


TAPE 78/AK/02 SIDE 1


Can you ever remember seeing a sheep fair?

R - Oh yes. And there used to be sheep fairs In Skipton, as well.

Yes, but Barnoldswick?

R – Yes, I can just remember it but it’s a long time, if I can’t remember I can remember talking about it.

Have you any idea where they used to have it?

R- No, I can’t remember, unless it was at the Seven Stars, I can’t remember.

That’s right, Seven Stars.

R- Was it there?

Yes. Well that’s what Billy Brooks says. Only Billy Brooks is a bit older than you, he is fourteen years older than you.

R- Yes, if I can’t remember, what I can remember is on the day they used to sell long sticks of white rock, with a streamer of white paper at the end, and they used to call It Barlick Fair Rock.

That’s it, Billy said exactly the same.

R- Well I remember that. Yes, I can remember that.

That's grand, that's it.


R- And they were only a halfpenny and they were about this length, [six inches].

Yes, can you remember at what time of the year they used to have that sale? Can you remember when it was?

R - Well I think it would be in the spring, I am not sure, I can’t remember to be sure. No, I can't remember.

Now, something else. What was Saturday night like? Can you describe what Church Street would be like on a Saturday to me, when you were a girl, you know, just beginning to take notice.

R- Well, there used to be one or two stalls on Church Street. Yes, toffee stalls. Yes, by where the old church, do you know where the old church was? [St James’] Well, there used to be one or two there and there used to be one, do you know where the Conservative Club is?

On Station Road ?

R - On Station Road yes. Well, there’s a road up to it and you can get into a side entrance. Well, there used to be a stall there, and when we were children my father always used to bring us all a stick of India Rock, and they were a ha’penny and they were good. Every Saturday night.

Was there anything else? Did they sell anything else in the street besides sweets, you know?

R – No. There used to be a fountain on there, on the top of Church Street, top of Butts. Have you heard of that? [The fountain erected by subscription for Queen Victoria’s Jubilee in 1897. Moved from Church Street to Letcliffe Park and then back into Town Square after the demolition of the Co-op building. Emma’s description is very accurate and the brass sockets above the bowl are threaded for taps.] Yes, a stone fountain, a round one with taps on and it would be about the height of this, nearly the height of this picture rail.


Aye, that's about seven foot, aye.

R- Perhaps not so high. Higher than that picture anyway, and it was a stone fountain, all carved stone and then it was about so wide round and it was a trough you know, and then the centre building and it was like an arch, like a temple at the top you know?

That's its aye.

R - In carved stone and there was a tap you know where you could run cold water.

So that's about four foot wide and was there a horse trough as well with it?

R- Not, no not down below. There was just this, and it would be about this height you know, we were children and we could stand on it and I would rather think there was a stone base as well if I remember right because we could see into this, and it was a round thing it would be about so wide round. And then there was a centre piece of stone that went up like a turret.

Have you any idea who put that there?

R- No, no I haven't.

Have you any idea who'd be in Church Street on a Saturday evening, because it used to go on into the evening didn’t it?

R - What, what?


The stalls.

R - Oh yes, they’d go on, as long as there was a customer they’d go on. Yes, yes. But that is a long time since, that’s seventy odd years since.

Yes, Can you remember when it stopped?

R- Well I think it would be perhaps after the first world war. I don't know. No, it'll be before then, long before then. Yes it would be long before then because you see they built some shops. When I was a girl, I'd only perhaps be twelve, they built those shops next to where the church was, Freeman Hardy & Willis’s. Well you see they wouldn't have stalls then, they wouldn't, you know they wouldn’t allow them then and that was, well that must be nearly seventy years since, between 65 and 70 years since.

Can you remember, was Wellhouse Farm still standing then?

R - Wellhouse Farm?

You know, there used to be a farm opposite the Commercial, well what they call the Barlick now, but the Commercial Hotel it used to be. There was a farmhouse there and I'm not sure of when that was pulled down. Because that's why those two streets are called Orchard Street and Garden Street at the back, because it was the orchard and the garden of the farm.

R - There used to be a farm where the new church is you know. You know where the garage is? Thompson’s garage? There used to be a farm there. Yes, there used to be a farm there and it was Jim Wright's farm and where those big shops are, just at the corner of Church Street going down Skipton Road?

Yes, where the American bar…

R - The Yankee Bar, yes. Well there were three little old shops there and one was a cottage, and then there was a little shoemaker’s shop and they called them McGuiness, they were Irish. I remember that as plain as anything because the young man, he and his father, he used to be sweet on my oldest sister. And they always used to be asking me about her and I was only a little girl you know and she was about eight or nine years older than me. There was this little clogger, shoe shop and it wasn’t, is this on? [the tape]



R - Oh I didn't know it was on.

Yes of course it is. Go on….

R - There was this little clogger’s shop, and then there was a cottage and then there was a butcher, Jim Wright’s butcher shop, and he had the farm and a house and that was on the ground where the new church is, just where Thompson's garage was. I remember that, and we used to call that hill Sagin Hill, just going up from the main road.


R - Sagin Hill that, it always went under that name, Sagin Hill. Why I don't know.

Ah, well, there’ll be a reason for it somewhere. What was the farm called, do you know, did it have a name?

R- No, I can’t remember.

I mean that'll be why they call that Croft up there won't it, because it would be Croft Farm?

R – Yes, yes. I don't know what it was called, but it was Jim Wright's farm.

Aye, it's interesting that.

R- And Croft House, is it Croft House? No, Croft House, you know, that cottage you know with the round end, you can see it from the road.

Now, I thought Croft, I thought Croft House was where Windle & Bowker is now. Norman Petty’s you know?


R - No, that isn't Croft House is it?

I think, I think they call that Croft House don't they? Which cottage is it that you mean, the one with the round end.

R- Well you know where Far East View is, behind the church, behind the new church?


R - Well there's a house away from the ... that's it. And I always thought that was Croft House.

It might, it might be Croft House because that is the Croft up there.

R - Yes, it is, yes.

Aye well, it can be very easily, there can be two Croft Houses. Anyway, don't let it bother you, you know what I mean.

R- No, but you know, because I used to mate with a girl from school and they’d a lovely garden and a summer house. You know, at the side of the house, but it’s just off the road is the garden but up to the house, at the end of the, not at the end of the house but the back part of the house. And then East View starts the cottages.

That's it.

R - You know Pickles who lived in the middle house down here? [ Jack Pickles as I knew him or ‘Gara’ as a by-name. Emma means the middle of the three cottages at the end of Park Road opposite the Dog.] well they lived in the first house, I can remember them, and his father was a carrier, he had a horse and cart. Eh, he’ll tell you all about it will Gara, and they called him, he was Garrett Pickles but everybody called him Gara Pickles, [Emma might be a bit confused here, Jack used to get called Gara and his father was called Garibaldi Pickles.] and he used to have a horse and cart and he used to go to Colne every week and a lot of people got their groceries from Bateman’s at Colne. They’d get a weeks groceries at once. I know my mother's friend, she did. And funnily enough their [Bateman’s] daughter was my cousin’s friend, this Bateman at Colne, and my cousin’s age now should be 93 in September. She is in Beams now, nursing home. [Beamsley?] Well, Dorothy, this Dorothy Bateman never got married and she died about two years since and left 90 odd thousand pounds. With groceries.


And why do you think people had the groceries…

R- Well you see, they bought such a lot at once you know that they got it cheaper you see? And it was brought to them and Gara Pickles used to deliver it.

(10 min)

If he went to Colne, would he take anything to Colne with him? When he was there would he take …

R- I don't know whether he would or not, I couldn’t say that. But I know he brought groceries back and I know my mothers friend [Mrs Fort], she used to get tins of tea about this height do you know, about this height and so square. It would be pounds and pounds in it you know. Well you see they got things cheaper if they bought in bulk.

I wonder sort of tea it were.

R- Mazawatee.

I think half the tea was Mazawatee then.

R – Lipton’s and Mazawatee. But I can remember because I know we had a tin for years that my mother got off Mrs Fort and it was Mazawatee, yes.

Aye, I can remember there used to be a sign in Stockport and you could buy it up to, well, I think after the Second world war you could buy this Mazawatee tea. I have mentioned it sometimes and, people have looked at me, you know, what? I mean, Mazawatee tea? That’s it, aye.

R- I know we always used to get Lipton’s when I was a little girl, yes.

Aye, Sir Thomas Lipton and his yachts. Aye, that’s it. And when you were at home at Forester's Buildings, before you moved down Gisburn Road, did you always sit down for your meals together?

R- Oh, yes, yes.

There’d be no such thing as somebody popping in and having their tea [when it suited them] and this that and the other. It’d be, your mother’d lay the table …

R- Well you see, we all came home from work together and the children, if we were children we probably had ours earlier. I think we did, when we came home from school. Till we got perhaps twelve or thirteen. Yes I think we did because there was such a lot of us, you know. When we were all at home.

Just run through, if you were all sat down at the table then, just run round the table and tell me the names and how old they were and who was at the table, you know, roughly.

R - Well you see, Joe was, how old would Joe be? Jessie is seven years younger than me Joe was nine [years younger] Well you see, they were only little children, they were very little children, I can't remember them sitting at the table till they got to be six or seven you know, and perhaps after they started going to school. And we’d have our tea before the work people came home, till we got working you see. And sitting at the table as children there were Joe my youngest brother, he died when he was twelve, and then there was Jessie, Olive and me. Now the others, next older to me was four years older than me so he’d be working when I was eight, half time you know. He’d be working half time. I can never remember him sitting down with us when we came home from school. And then there’d be Fred, Tom, Margaret, Grace and the two half sisters and me father and mother. There’d eight of them.


A fair family,

R - Yes. There’d be Fred, Margaret, Grace, Tom, Sarah, Ellen, me father and mother, there’d be eight. That were when they were all at home, but you see I can only just remember the eldest ones being at home. But I can remember next just us being at home. And then you see, they were me father’s, they were a lot older than my mother's children, 'cause me father had been married twice, he lost his first wife. [Emma is talking about her two stepsisters, Sarah and Ellen] And Sarah, I think she’d be, I should think she'd be ten years old when he married my mother because she was about, she’d be about eleven years older than my eldest brother. So they were a lot older and then they got married you see and there were just the others left. And then they kept getting married do you know? There was only three, two of them left when I got married. There was only Jessie and Olive because me younger brother died when he was twelve and I was seventeen, he was five years younger than me.

When they were working they’d be tipping up would they?

R - Oh yes. Till they, till they got 21 and then of course they boarded. You know, they paid so much and kept the rest and clothed themselves.

That’s it. And was that a fairly usual age that, 21?

R - Yes it was.

(15 min)

And that's where the thing comes in about ‘Key of the Door’ isn’t it.

R- Yes, yes. ‘Never been 21 before’! [This is a line from an old song]

That's it, yes, that's it. And, when they were boarding, what they consider to be boarding money for the week in them days?

R- Well, I can’t remember what they paid. But I know when I started boarding at first, well the wages would be… When I was 21, I can’t remember what they would be. Even I were married, you see I was 25 when I was married, because Billy was away at the war then I were married two years after the war finished, in 1920. I paid about 25/- for board. Our wages would be about 30 to 35 shillings then and when I finished work it would be about two pounds ten perhaps, for a woman, but I had five looms, and there weren't a lot of men that had five looms. Me and me sister had ten
Looms together, Olive and I, we 10 looms together and we were considered to be good weavers. We worked for Nutters at Bancroft, no, at Bankfield.

Now when you were at home, sat down at the table, did you always have a tablecloth on?

R- Oh, always, yes. When we got grown up we always had, when we were young we had an oilcloth, you know, a soft oilcloth one.

American cloth? What they used to call American cloth?

R- Yes, yes. But as we got older we had, my mother was proud you know. She was proud. She was a good mother.

Just an aside there, because after all this a conversation, Vera and myself, we were just talking the other day and I said to her, “Do you know, if you did but know there are children growing up today, probably 15 or 16 years old that have never sat down to a table with their family in their life, with a table properly set.” I said “Now, can you believe that?” And you know, there are.

R- Oh yes.


We find it difficult to realise, but there are a lot of people who have never sat down at a properly laid table you know? It's ally in front of the television now. Trays in front of the television. And I think that's something, I think it's very important that, I think it's something that has been lost.

R- Yes it is, yes.

People sitting down at the table, together, once in the day.

R- Yes, that's right. Well, it’s your family together.

That's it, it’s the family.

R - It’s your family together, yes. And we have always been a close family, and we still are. We’ve argued and called one another but we still, nobody else has to call them!

Were your parents fairly strict with you about table manners, you know?

R- Well, they, yes they were. We were, I think we were well behaved, yes I think we were.

That's the thing, isn’t it, you have got to behave yourself. That's it yes.

R- Yes, yes. And with my father, I have never heard my father swear in his life, no.

If you had done something wrong, that warranted punishment, what would the punishment be?

R- A clatter.

That’s it, Yes. [By ‘clatter’, Emma means a smack]

R- When we were young you know? Just a clatter.

That’s it. And did anybody say grace before meals?

R – No.

And, did you ever have prayers at home?

R--Have what?


R- No, no. We all went to Church, Chapel, even when we had to go to Sunday School in the afternoon, Chapel at night, and we didn’t always go to Church, Chapel on Sunday Morning, till we went in the choir and then we had to do. I went in the choir when I was about sixteen.

When you went to Sunday School, was there any other form of teaching apart from religious teaching?

R- No, it was only Bible.

That’s it, yes. Because at one time there was, Sunday Schools were Sunday Schools at one time weren't they?

R- Yes, yes. They were Sunday schools, yes. [This might not be clear. What Emma and I were saying was that ordinary school subjects were taught on a Sunday as well as Bible study]

That's it, yes. And if you had a birthday was it any different than any other day?


R- Well, there were too many of us to have a party but my friend, one of my friends, she was an only one - she always had a party, and I always went. And the other one she, well they had a shop you know where the man covered suites on Rainhall Road. Upholsterer.

(20 min)

Yes, Duxbury, yes.

R- Yes well, my friend, that was a grocer’s shop [Mrs Bracewell] and a very good grocer's shop, and they lived in the house next door. And I used to call every morning for my friend, she lived next door, ‘cause I went to the Wesleyan School and I always stopped at their house when I came home from school in the afternoon. And if I didn’t go home for me tea me mother always knew where I was 'cause two or three times a week I'd stop for me tea and if I didn't for me tea I’d always go up at night, after tea. And she was the kindest woman was Mrs Bracewell. that I ever came across in me life. I think she'd have had me every day if I, you know, if she dared have asked me. She was, she was the kindest person I ever knew and she was a lovely baker, and they were, they’d plenty you know, plenty. They’d a shop you know, and he left quite a lot of money. In fact, he was the managing director of Bankfield Shed, apart from his business. He was a business man, he’d a business head, and he never came out of that shop from. morning till night, only for his meals. He’d a very good business, a grocer's business and drapery. And she is still living is that, my friend. There were four girls of us went out together, and we all lived till we were over eighty. And Ada [Bracewell] and I are eighty three, it was my birthday yesterday, and her birthday is in August, and the eldest, next to the eldest, she'll be eighty-five in September and she never married.

How about Christmas?

R- Oh, we always had our stocking up at Christmas and I remember when I got a bit older going out with my mother to buy presents for the younger ones. Oh and I thought it was wonderful, you know, when I got to know, like it wasn't Father Christmas. We used to go out on Christmas Eve, the shops were open till 11 o'clock you know, till 11 o’clock at night, and always, they could stop open as long as they wanted could the shops in those days. Oh, and it were wonderful going out ‘cause you daren’t keep anything in the house ‘cause she felt sure we’d find it. You know?

Aye, when you say you used to go, you know the shops were open till that time, obviously the shops would have gas light.

R - Oh yes.

Yes. Was there gas lighting in the streets by then?

R - Oh yes, yes. I think I can always remember gas lights, I think so.

Yes. It's quite possible because the gas company did start very early on, you know, 1880 something like that, so, yes. [Earlier actually. There was a gasworks built with the New Mill and it sold some gas to nearby houses while it was a private undertaking. When Billycock Bracewell died in 1885 he was in the process of building what became the public gas works next to the Corn Mill.]

R- Yes, as far as I can remember there's always been gas lights.

That's it, aye.

R- We were out in the country, at Forester's Buildings, there were nothing past Forester's Buildings.

That's it.

R- No. The only cottages were those by the Catholic Church, those far cottages, and Crow Nest cottages down Coates, you know, next to Rolls Royce. And we were, you know it was, when I used to come home from Bracewell’s at night, you know, it was dark you know in Winter, I used to run all the way, frightened of anybody running after me.

Can, oh yes you said, you were on about that there’d only be one other building down there then, that’d be the old Coates Mill, can you ...

R- Coates Mill ? Yes.

Aye, but not the new one.

R – No, the old one.

Can you remember the old one?

R- Yes, I can, my sister was eight years older than me, Grace. Well, her young man, he worked in the office there. Yes and they call, it was, there were a few of them, there were few of them that owned that mill, three or four. But he worked in the office did, my sister's…

Do you know, can you remember, any of the names of the people that were connected with the Coates folks?

R – Yes, yes I can. There were Nelson Duckworth and he used to live down here in Mitchell Terrace and his daughter died nearly a year since, and she used to be my Sunday School teacher, and he was one of the


partners. She never married didn’t Lillian, she was a quiet little person. Then there was somebody called, from Earby I think it was, I think they called him Pickles from. Earby. But there were two or three, but I remember Nelson Duckworth quite well and he's been dead donkey's years.

Yes. And that mill…

R- It was cotton weaving.

Yes. Can you remember Coates, well of course you can remember it working. Have you any idea when Coates Mill, the old Coates Mill that used to be the water mill [was demolished]?

R - Oh no. I can’t remember that when it was a water mill.

(25 min)

No, but it used to be a water mill.

R- Oh, did it? I didn't know that.

Now just let’s make sure we are talking about the same mill. I don't mean the Coates Mill that's Carr’s Printers now. Is that what you were talking about?

R – Oh, yes.

No there used to be an earlier Coates Mill you know.

R –Well, I don't remember that.

It used to stand down in Victory Park.

R- Oh no I can’t remember that.

And I know it was standing in, now, wait a minute, no, 1892 it was demolished.

R- Yes, I can’t remember.

It was demolished in 1892. No, that's my mistake, I've been leading you up the garden path there, It was 1892 that mill was demolished. Yes, but anyway that’s, I mean that's interesting about Coates because there's very little known about who … Coates is one of the mills in Barlick that nobody seems to know very much about you know?

R- No. Oh well, my brother in law, he worked in the office there, and there were two or three of them.

Yes, Do you, can you ever remember, do you know about a firm that set up there, they were Earby lads that set it up…

R- Pickles’s?

No, now wait a minute, it was the something manufacturing company, oh deary me, I can’t think, not Seascale, oh a funny name, the Seal Manufacturing Company.


R- No, how long is that since?

I don't know really, I don't know really. I have an idea they went on till not long since. Anyway it doesn’t matter if you don't know, it's just something, you know, I have to just chase these things up a bit to try and nail them down you know. It means many a time that I’m confusing people because I don’t know what I'm talking about. I’m trying to find out about something that nobody really talks about now. Yes, anyway, it doesn't matter. Can, well obviously you did have musical instruments in the house because you used to play the violin didn’t you. Yes, that's it, and then there was your father.

R- Pardon?

R- My father taught me my first violin lesson when I was 14. He taught me and my youngest brother violin lessons and he used to play at the Sunday School. There was him and Harry Purcell, well his father is Tom Purcell and he married Sally Hacking. Well, Sally Hacking’s youngest sister, she played the violin at the same time and she went to, do you know Mr Peckover? But my father taught my brother the violin and they used to play… There was Jenny Hacking, Sally’s youngest sister, my brother died when he was twelve so you can tell he wasn’t so old. And my brother Joe and my cousin Arthur Petty, they all played the violin. Can you remember Arthur Harper?


R- Don’t you? He lived in Mosley Street. Well, his wife played the piano and she was courting but she wasn’t married. She played a little harmonium and they played the violin for the hymns at the Sunday School.

That’s it, aye.

R- And then of course I was about fourteen, when I got to be nearly fifteen and I wanted to be going out and I thought my father spent too much time with Joe and so I gave it up. And when I was twenty I went to the orchestra concert, they used to be marvellous concerts, they used to get really tip-top talents you know for a solo singer or violinist. And I went and I thought yes, I’m going to start again and I was twenty and I went to Mr Peckover. He was supposed to be, well he was a marvellous teacher and he was also an examiner. And I went and it was just before I met Billy. Yes, I’d be playing the violin when I met Billy, I’d be nineteen when I met Billy ‘cause when I was twenty I thought ‘I’m going again’. [?] And I went to Mr Peckover and within three months I was playing in the orchestra.


Yes. Now you played somewhere else as well didn’t you.

R- I played at the pictures, at the Majestic.

Now, when was that Mrs Clark?

R - When was that? During the war, during. the first world war. [If Emma was twenty this would be 1915 or later] And we just played on Saturday night. There were about ten of an orchestra, and then my music master and his wife and Marion Hawes, she was a beautiful pianist, a concert pianist. She was a beautiful player and she used to play every night, she was a pupil of Mr Peckover. They played every night, this was in the silent days of course.

Yes, that’s right.

R- And they played every night those two, violin and piano. And then on Saturday nights there was a little orchestra, about eight or ten of us and if there was a special picture on we played all week. And I got half a crown for one night, and that was, that was a lot, of money in those days.

It was for a week wasn’t it?

R- That was half a crown a night!

Yes, well I say for six nights.

R- Oh if I played a week I was in clover!

Aye. Can you remember any of the films that were on. Did any of them stick in your mind?

R- Oh Camellia I think, there was, that was one. But you see we hadn’t time to watch them you know when we were playing. And I could go to the pictures any night I wanted for nothing. And I could take a friend.

And that was, was it well attended then, the cinema?

R- Oh yes. It used to be packed on Saturday night. Packed. And during the week as well it was, you know, always about three quarters full and more.

Yes, because they used to change the programme on Wednesday didn't they?

R - Yes they did, yes

That's it, yes.

R- And when I used to go to my knitting party, Billy always went to the pictures, he loved the pictures. When I used to go, that was when the children were bigger you know, when the children got bigger. Andy he always, he always went to the pictures when I went to the knitting.


And in those days it’d be gas lighting in the cinema would it?

R- Not in 1915 it wasn't. I don’t think so. No, it wouldn't be gas. I can remember the first mantle being put on in our house, did I tell you about it?

Yes. Yes that's it. Yes, I know the reason why, I asked you that because actually I know that it was electric at the Majestic because they had their own gas engine, in the cellar.

R- Yes they had. No, on the ground floor. Yes, because we used to go in there at the side door you know to hang our clothes up. We didn’t go through the pictures, we went in at the side door and they called him Jimmy Brown the man who looked after it and he used to live in one of those cottages by the Greyhound. Jimmy Brown. And oh, and he used to sell bicycles, make, do them up, and I bought one off him and it was three pounds I remember that as plain as anything. And my sister in law and I, her husband was away at the war and Billy was away at the war and we went to St Annes on them, our bicycles. And it was an old thing was this of mine, I came back, there were no brakes on, I came all the way from St Annes without brakes.

You were dangerous, you were dangerous, there you are…

R- I was a right tomboy!

Yes. Now when, I don't know when the Majestic was built. [1914] Have you any idea when the Majestic itself was built?

R- Well, it was built before the war, it must have been because I was 19, well I'd be twenty, well that’s 63 years since and it was before then.

Because I do know who built it, it was…

R- Matthew Hartley.

That’s it, Hartley. Now, I do know that. I don't know whether it’s when the Majestic was built, or after the Majestic was built, do you know anything about him buying some stuff off the liner Majestic when they broke it up?

R- Yes. He bought some woodwork from the Majestic, the ship called the Majestic. Yes, I do remember that.

Yes. Can you remember what he did with it?

R- No, wasn’t it… I did know at the time.

Well, I know about this because I've seen the place, I don’t know what he, I only know one thing that he did with the woodwork that he got from the ship. I know he got a lot of stuff from the Majestic when it was broken up, I have an idea it was broken up at Barrow but I’m not certain. But anyway, one of the things that he did 1 know because I’ve seen this room. He lived in that row of houses just across from the Majestic didn't he, that side street that goes up there.

R- Yes, yes, at one time.

And Teresa Hartley, I don’t know whether she is still alive, I think she died just recently. She'd be some relation to those Hartleys, she lived in a house up there, I was once in that house and I went to the bathroom and the bathroom was panelled with panelling out of the Majestic, out of the ship. But the funny thing about it was, with being out of a ship the panelling isn't square because you see there’s very few rooms that are square in a ship.

(850)(35 min)

And the panelling was actually out of line slightly. But the bathroom was panelled in mahogany from the Majestic. I bet that room's still done like that, panelled.

R- Well yes. And didn't he buy the, you know, there is a figurehead in front of the… did he buy that?

I'm not sure but I know he bought a lot of stuff.

R- Yes, I have a feeling that he did, I might be wrong, but I have a feeling that he did.

And somebody once told me, whether it's right or not I don’t know, but somebody once told me, you know the handrails on the steps in the main entrance to the Majestic?

R- Yes, yes.

They tell me that those came off the Majestic as well.

R- Yes, I wouldn’t be surprised.

Anyway, I’ll probably find somebody that knows for sure one day. It’s only a little thing, but it's interesting, you know?

R- Yes. I tell you what I, we once heard, I don't know whether it's true or not. They said he was in Ireland and he was, he’d no money at all. He just had a penny in his pocket and he threw it in the sea and he said “I’ll start from nothing” Now that, whether it's true or not, but that’s was something we heard once. He’d no money and he had just a penny in his pocket and he were by the sea and he threw it in the sea and he said “I'll start from nothing” and you see, that was before they built the Majestic. How he started I don't know but that was the tale that was going, when I was young.

Well the Majestic really is a marvellous building because, tell me if I’m wrong, but there was the cinema, the ballroom, the billiard hall…

R- Yes. And there was a Gentleman’s club.

Aye, now where…

R- The Gentleman’s Club, and the entrance was up Fernlea Avenue. There was a Gentleman’s Club, they called it the Gentleman’s Club, I remember that.

And there was also, tell me if I am right or wrong, an inside market downstairs wasn’t there?

R- Yes there was, I remember now, there was a market down there.

Yes. That would be under the ballroom wouldn’t it?

R- It would be, yes.

And when you think you know, it was a marvellous building.

R- Oh it was and then he built all those post office buildings.

Yes that’s it, yes. Yes, what are now the Station Chambers.


R - Yes he did all that block.

Yes, that's it. Anyway, there you are. Can you remember any newspapers coming into the house. You know, did your father have regular newspaper?

R- Oh we used to get the Northern Daily Telegraph. And then we always used to get the Sunday Companion, a weekly, it was like a religious paper you know. My father, he were brought up, there was nothing else only the Church and Chapel where we came from, I told you all about it - didn’t I - last time?

Yes. That's it, aye.

R- And you see, they were all religious.

Did you ever get any papers yourself you know like ...

No, now I think me brother, eldest, me brother Fred, older than me got a comic paper. but I'm not sure. No, we never got any papers.

Did you ever see any of Arthur Mee’s papers? You know like the children’s newspaper?

R- No, no. I don't think there were any when we were young. [Arthur Mee founded the Children’s Newspaper in 1919.]

No. I don’t know when those started.

R- No, I don't think there would be, not when I young, I don't remember. When I was in my teens now, there used to be a girl’s paper, and Polly Green, she was a, you know Polly Green was what they call teenagers now, she’d be about sixteen and there was always a story. I think it was called Polly Green's Magazine and it was, there were nothing dirty or anything in papers then you know? They were all stories about what girls did and boys, meeting boys you know, no sex you know, no sex in those days.

Well, there would be, but it wasn’t talked about.

R- No no, there was no sex talked about. When they kissed one another you know, but, nothing, nothing else.

Can you ever remember seeing the Police Gazette?

R- No.

I think they called it the Police Gazette, I’m not sure. That was the, you know, it was the paper that all the murder cases were in that…

R- Oh yes. I can remember Doctor Crippen, that case. Can you remember, have you heard of it?

Oh yes, yes. Belle, Belle…

R - Belle Elmore. [Crippen’s wife Cora’s stage name who he murdered]

Is that, was that her name? That’s it.

R- I can remember that and I’d be in my teens then. [Crippen was hanged in November 1910 so Emma would be 15]

Aye, Can you ever remember a theatre company coming to the town?

R- Yes. Leyburn’s Theatre, and they used to come on the Station, where the post office buildings are now. Yes. And it used to be two pence to go, on a Saturday afternoon for children.

And what did they play in.

R- A big, a great big wooden hut, it covered nearly all the ground.

And they brought that with them?

Oh yes, and it would, it would be there, I don't know, perhaps six months or something like that. And I always remember seeing Maria Martin and The Red Barn mystery.

That's it. That’s it.

R- I remember seeing that and then there was another I saw. I only went twice because we weren’t allowed to go really you know.

Can you think of the name of this other?

R- Of this other?


R- The Colleen Born, the Colleen Born. The Face at the Window, that was one.

Yes, Saved by a Woman. Can you remember that?

R- No.

That was the one that Ernie could remember, he could remember Saved by a Woman and the Red Barn Mystery.

R - Yes, The Red Barn Mystery. Yes

That’s it, yes. Now, apart from that can you ever remember any other drama players coming to the town and playing?

R- No. I can remember the first time I ever went anywhere. I wouldn’t be very old. I wouldn’t be above six or seven I don't think. It was at the Queen's Hall, and it was a magic lantern, slides, and it was a penny to go. Now, that’s the first entertainment I’d ever been to apart from the Chapel.

Now, tell where, the Queen’s Hall was.

R- Where it is now.

Yes, well tell me about it.

R- The Conservative Club.

That’s it yes. And now in those days the dance halls in the town were, there was the Majestic, the Queen’s Hall…

R - And the Albert Hall under the Liberal Club

That’s right, and then there was the Co-op Hall as well wasn’t there?

R- Yes, there was the Co-op Hall, yes.

I didn't know till Ernie Roberts told me this week that the Co-op Hall is now a squash court.

R - A what?

Squash court.

R - Oh, is it?

Aye, I didn’t know.

R- No, I didn’t.

Ernie says he is not going to go playing there, but he says it is a squash court. Aye.

SCG/18 January 2003
7,237 words


TAPE 78/AK/02 SIDE 2


Can you ever remember your mother getting any sorts of a woman's magazine?

P -. No. The Sunday Companion. That’s all.

And did anybody in the family belong to the library?

R - Not when we were young. Happen there wouldn't be a library here then when we were young.

How about the Mechanics Institute?

R - Oh well, I used to go down there from the night school, we. had cookery lessons down there.

Where was night school?

R - In Gisburn Road School. Evening classes, I tried that school, I went three years to the evening classes, and we had our cookery lessons down there.

The Mechanics Institute?

R – Yes, by the Gas Works, down by the Gas Works it was.

Ah now, that's a different one, this is a different one then.

R- Ah, well, we had to go down there.

Yes? Because the one that I was talking about is where what's now the Town Hall on Jepp Hill.

R - Oh no, well we used to go down to, at this end of the Gas Works, the Gas Works building it is, it was, and we used to go down there for cookery lessons.


Yes, What other things were there, what other things could you do at evening classes?

R – Oh, English, Household Management, which is like Domestic Science now, Household Management, which included cookery and Needlework. English, Needlework, Household Management. Not Arithmetic.

That's it. Would you say that there were, were there all sorts of people went or were there more women than men that went to them?

R - No there were part, I think they had classes for men ‘cause I mean, we hadn’t any men in our class, they were all girls.

That’s it. Can you remember if there’d be any books in the house?

R - Oh yes, we were all good readers. Her Bennie, you know that was a, can you remember, have you heard of that?

I've seen it.


R – Oh, it was a very sad story was that. I’ve ready it many a time and cried every time I read it. It was about a little, a little, do you know they were waifs on the streets of Liverpool and it was a brother and sister and the little girl died. And he turned out to be quite all right. He got a job with, as a little boy clerk with a solicitor I think. And one day there was a cheque missing and he couldn’t think of anything but what this boy had stolen it and he were heart broken and he ran away and he got work on a farm and they thought the world of him because he was a right honest little boy. And one day there was, a gentleman came to this farm, he were a friend of theirs, and he started telling about this little boy did this gentleman, he was in quite a big way you know. And he started telling about this little boy. He says ‘and a year or two after he’d run away, this little boy, he found this cheque in a book and he said you know he had been very unhappy about it. And when he was leaving this little boy said, ‘Well I am Bennie who used to work for you.’ Well I used to sob my heart out about this Bennie you know, he’d lost his little sister and then he was accused. Anyway, he married his daughter so it was all right at the end. But I’ve never forgot that story.


Can you remember any of the other books?

R - Yes, I can but I can’t remember the titles and we always used to be reading.

That's it. It doesn’t matter, it doesn't matter. I’ll tell you one that my mother used to have…

R - East Lynne, East Lynne.

That’s it, Mrs Maryatt [Mrs Henry (Ellen) Wood actually]

R - And Uncle Tom’s Cabin.

(5 min)

Aye, how about Christie’s Old Organ?

R – Yes, Christie’s Old Organ.

There was one. I can never remember the title of it, but there was one and it was a very, very popular book at the time I know, and that was a real tear jerker about this man who lived in a cottage on top of a hill and these two lasses used to go and try and befriend him. Now did they call it something like Winter’s Folly?

R - Oh yes? No I have never read it, I have heard of it. No, no, I haven’t heard that.

Winters Folly, that was it. Yes, aye. And were there anything like, you know, an encyclopaedia or…

R- Yes, Wide World Magazine, I think there was Wide World Magazine and do you know, that was a thick magazine you know? It was a good one. I remember that.

And so every body In your family would be able to read and. write.

R - Oh yes.


Did you know anybody that couldn't read or write?

R - No. No.

And how about toys?

R- Toys? Oh well we didn't have a lot of toys, we always had one or two you know, we’d always get a toy at Christmas, a doll or something like that, an apple and orange and nuts and things like that. Oh yes we were, we never went short of anything, never went short.

Can you ever remember having anything like a toy or a doll that you thought a lot about?

R – Oh, I can remember having dolls, yes I always wanted a doll.

Aye that's it, aye. And if your mother had any spare time at home, what did she used to do?

R – Knit. She was for ever knitting. When we were young she used to knit all our socks and stockings and she was always knitting?

Did she knit on long needles or did she use short steel needles?

R - Steel needles for knitting stockings and socks.

Can you ever remember her using a knitting stick?

R - No, no.

Do you know what I mean, don*t you? Knitting sticks aye.

R – No, I don't know what you mean.

Oh it’s like a, it looks like, do you know these scimitars, these swords, you know, scimitars with a curved blade, it looks like a small one of them about a foot long made out of wood and it has a hole in the end for a steel needle and they used to put it under their arm. You know how some people knit with one needle under their arm don't they?


R - And use the thumb. Yes.

Yes, my mother knits like that with one needle. I think she puts it, I think she puts it under her left arm and she holds one needle, some people knit with two needles like that don’t they?

R - Yes I always, I always, but I used to cast on with me thumb. You know, I used to cast on with me thumb, but always knit with two needles, but she used to do a lot of crocheting and she 'd crochet beautiful shawls. Oh, and put a lovely fringe on. I always remember Shirley when she was about, she was only about four and auntie Grace, she was, she was eight years older than me. Well, in the first war, in the last war, yes in the last war, well her husband had to go, had to join up and he was about 40 and her daughter was married and she used to, she said “Can Shirley come and sleep with me?” You know she was nervous, and I said “Yes” She said “And then she can go to school.” She lived in the Avenues, and she said “I'll get her ready and she can go to school” you know and then she can come home for her dinner and her tea and then” No, no “She can come home for her dinner and then go there for her tea and stay all night.” And so one night she says to her ''Now then Shirley, it’s getting ready for bed time, it’s getting bed time.” She says “Oh, I don't want to go to bed yet Auntie Grace.” and she says "Well, you know you have to get up to go to school in the morning.” And she says “Well I'll go if I can have your red shawl on and a candle.” A candle. You see when we used to go to Dale Park they had candles upstairs you know, they had no gas, no electricity, they have lamps downstairs and she thought it was marvellous to have a candle to go to bed with. And she said “Auntie Grace, well I’ll go if I can have your red shawl on that grandma knitted and a candle. And that was only forty years since. Yes. She was, she is 45 now


she'd be about four then, she’d just started going to school. And we always laughed about her wanting a candle to go to bed, and of course they had electricity!

Yes. That’s it, aye. If your father had any spare time, what would he do? In the house?

R - Oh he never did any work in the house. He says, now what was his saying? I'm not going to keep dogs and bark myself.

(10 min)

I don't blame him with all those children! It’s, it's just about right. And what time did you get up in the morning?

R - To go to school? Oh, about eight o'clock.

And what time would you go to bed at night?

R - About nine. When we got …

That's it, yes.

R- Yes. When we got about ten or so you know, something like that.

And had you any pets?

R - Me brother always had a dog.

I remember you saying about that.

R- And he always had rabbits you know. We had like an out building at the back and he always kept rabbits. But I was never interested in rabbits. But he always had a little dog.

And, did anybody in the family smoke?


R - Me father smoked a pipe ‘cause I always remember going in the kitchen once and taking it and smoking it and oh, and I was sick. I wouldn’t be so old, I thought I'm going, he’d gone to sleep in the chair and I thought “I'm going to have a smoke at that pipe.” And oh and I was sick.

That’d cure you!

R - And when I came back they said “What’s the matter with you, you look sick.” I said “Yes, I feel a bit sick.” But I never told her what l’d been doing.

And did anyone, did anyone in the family gamble?

R- I don’t think so. No, no.

No. Now can you. remember when you had your first wireless set? Which was the first wireless set you saw, can you remember?

R - The first wireless set I saw… You know Watson's Garage? [The red brick building at the end of Skipton Road facing what used to be the Co-op] Well, Eddie Bradley had that. My brother in law’s brother in law. Billy’s brother's wife’s brother. They were manufacturers at Bankfield where Rolls Royce is now, they had a thousand looms.

Who was that?

R- Bradley’s, and he used to live at Highfield House where Mr Farmer lives now, the specialist. Rolling in money. Billy and I used to go up there tennis playing, tennis court with everything. Money was no object. I don't know whether I should be telling you this or not, it's personal you know. Would you like to stop it? Or does it matter? Would anybody hear it?

No, you are right, No, no, it’s right. No, I mean if you don’t, no if you don't want to tell me. Don't bother you know, it’s right. I mean it's just the radio you know, the wireless sets you know.


R- Yes, well now, well it’s common property is this. They were manufacturers and they were the biggest manufacturers in Barlick were Nutters and Bradleys. They went into Bankfield Shed when it was built.[1905]

That’s it.

R - And they had a thousand looms each, within one or two of a thousand. ‘Cause they had so much to pay more if they… [Emma never finished this sentence but I have a suspicion she was referring to membership fees of the Manufacturer’s Association or something similar.]

That's its aye.

R- And Billy's brother married Mr Bradley's daughter and, and they had a son, they had a son. Well, when Billy came back from the war, I mean he joined up about six weeks after I met him, and of course he wanted me to write to him and that was how it started. And I didn’t want to settle down really, I never thought of being serious when I went with him. But I always thought he was very nice you knows but, ‘cause we used to have such a good time, you know…

Aye, that's how these things happen.

R - We used to go out with a lot of boys and girls. We went out with a crowd of boys, there was about six of them and four girls there was and we went everywhere together. And they were right nice lads, in fact one was Sidney Brooks’ brother, Harry Brooks. Well he was, he died in the war. You know Robinson Brooks, and they were a right nice lot of lads and if we, if there were any dancing on they wouldn't go out if we weren’t going, and we wouldn't go if they weren't going. We used to go out with them every Sunday, every Sunday afternoon we used to go down to Stock Beck. We didn't go with them, but we met, all met there then we’d meet them down Gisburn Road on Sunday night. We never went with any of them and lots of people used to say “Which is your boy Emma?” I said “There isn’t any of them my boy, we only go mates with them” which we did.


And what was I going to tell you? Oh well, after Billy came home from the war well we used to spend all our Summer evenings up there playing tennis in the tennis court, they had money for anything. Well, Eddie had to go [to the war], that was George’s wife’s brother, he had to join up. There were three brothers with Bradley Brothers [I think they were Christopher Edwin, Arthur and Watson.], it's called Bradley Brothers [the weaving firm at Bankfield] and they each had a son. Well, Ella’s [Ella{?} was George Clark’s wife] brother had to go because he was the eldest and his father fell out with the other two brothers because his son had to go. And isn’t it silly? Anyway he got paid out, he fell out with them and he says “You'd pay me out.” and he got paid out which, he was better off than any of them you know because they went bank did Bradleys and they’d nothing. He [Arthur Bradley]never put anything in his wife's name, he’d just nothing. [Emma is talking about the practice of putting certain assets in the wife’s name to preserve them from being taken as assets of the business in bankruptcy of a non-limited company, a common practice. Bradley Brothers wasn’t a limited company] And his warehouse was packed to the top with cloth and he was told times without number “Get your cloth sold!” and he’d say “Oh, I’m not selling my cloth, I’m waiting till prices go up.” But they went down, they kept going down and the bank closed on them, they had nothing. Well, Eddie, this is George's brother in law, he {the father]was out of the mill then you see and he built that garage for Eddie, he built that garage for Eddie and it is a good garage that was, after the 1914 war. And he put him a thousand pounds in the bank which was a lot of money then and a thousand pounds worth of stock. And it, that was just when the wireless was coming in. Well Eddie had an office upstairs, all he did was spend his time up there fiddling with wirelesses. And he got married, they got married him and Elsie and well they invited us.


They lived, they never had a home of their own, him and his wife they lived with the. parents down Gisburn Road so they invited us down one evening for supper, me and Billy. Well, the dining room table was full of batteries, but full of batteries. That was the beginning of wireless and all we got was a few squeaks. All we got was a few squeaks and he was twiddling this and twiddling that, and then, and then there were like a bit of a ‘twerp’. He said “That's like a bloody canary!” Now that was my introduction to wireless.

Eh, goodness gracious me.

R- And I said, I used to think “Well, Elsie will have a lady's life.” His wife, and she’s had to work all her life. She is still living, he died, he’s been dead about seven or eight years has Eddie, but you see he was a spoilt boy.

Yes, that’s it.

R- He’d too much money, you see they had too much money and they thought it’d go on for ever but it doesn’t you know.

No. It doesn’t. That’s one of the things that started me off doing this you know. In the days we are talking about when cotton was, well cotton was king. That’s all there was to it.

R- It was the main industry in the country was cotton.

They never thought it would finish, they couldn’t see the day when It’d finish. Well now you see, Rolls Royce, Silentnight, they’re the kings now but they’ll finish as well

R- Oh yes, sometime. Oh yes it’s like everything, it's an old Lancashire saying you know 'In three generations, clogs to clogs.’ Have you never heard it?


That’s it. Yes. Clogs to clogs in three generations. And another one, ‘Up like a rocket and down like the stick.’ Anyway, apart from the first radio, which evidently wasn’t a great success, can you remember when you heard the first radio that was working?


R- Well, now when would that be? Now Eddie was married before we were, and that’s the wedding present, that silver cake basket that they gave us. And we were married in 1920 and so they were married before, so it would be about 1920 when we heard them [The ‘twerp’ I think] And then I think it would be about twelve months after that before I heard the first radio. I should think so. Well we were married in 1920, November, it would perhaps be 1922 when I heard me first radio.

That’s it aye. When did you first buy one yourself? Can you remember that?

R- Well it was when we lived in the top house in Ash Grove, and we, now we lived in Ash Grove, we married in 1920 and Dorothy was born in l926, so I should say, oh no, I don’t know about wireless, I’m talking about a gramophone now.

It doesn't matter, it doesn't matter.

R - I can’t remember.

Not it’ll, it’s funny, do you know I’ll tell you something. We’ll be talking about something else happen next week or a week or two later and we'll get around to it and you’ll remember, you'll know then. It'll come back to you.

R - I can't remember,

No, don't bother about it, no, that's all right. And, well you have already said about riding your bicycle to St Annes. Which must have been a fair outing in those days.

R - Well my sister and my sister in law took our luggage, they went on the train.

Oh, well that was a big…

R- We’d gone for a week.

That's it, yes. How about going for walks?

R - Oh well, it was the only thing we did in our young days was go for walks. We had to walk over Brown Hill and Gisburn Old Lane down to, you know, to Brogden and back down Brogden Lane. And when Billy used to come home on leave, his parents, his mother, his father lived at Barrowford and his mother died when he was 18 and he went to live with a friend of his mother's, a Mrs Broughton.


And his father got married again and lived at Barrowford. And when he used to come home on leave, well he took me home for the first time, when he came home from leave the first time because I'd never met his parents. And we used to walk to Barrowford and back in a day. Yes, we used to go in the morning when he was on leave and have dinner and tea there and walk back at night. I used to be dead nearly when we got back home!

Aye, But it hasn't done you any harm has it?

R- No evidently not.

There you are. Can you remember anybody in the family going fishing?

R- No, no. No fishermen in our family.

No fishing, Not your father?

R - No.

If he had any spare time did he go for a walk?

R- Yes, he used to go for a walk and then he’d go out for a pint at night sometimes. Down to the Syke. And then he used to be the choir master at the Chapel.

Ah, so he’d be fairly busy.

R- Yes

That’s it. What sort of people would you say, you went to the Wesleyan didn't you?

R- No, Baptist.

Baptist, sorry, Baptist. What sort of people would you say went to the Baptists. When I say what sort, you know, well what sort of people were there?

R- Well, there were a lot of money people went to the Baptists, there was the Robinson Brooks family, the Slater family that had the mill at Salterforth, Whiteoaks, they had the mill next to Robinson Brooks at Westfield, they were Baptist. Stephen Pickles,

(25 min)

you know what they are. Stephen Pickles, they had plenty of money you know? It was Stephen and Harry Pickles then, it was, you know, the old [this must have been Stephen1856], well they’d be a hundred now and Fred Pickles died, it’d be four or five years since and he’d be in his middle seventies. So yes, there were a lot of money people, and then there were just ordinary working people you know.

That’s it, yes.

R- Shopkeepers and I should say they were quite a nice class of people yes.


R- And we had to go to Sunday School you know. Morning and afternoon and. Chapel at night. Sometimes I used to go to the New Ship Chapel with my friends, they all went to the New Ship, Independent Methodists and I used to go with them sometimes. Now I used to ask my mother. She says “Yes of course you can.” She says “You can’t expect three of them to come to the Baptists.” And I used to like it, They were a more homely lot at the New Ship, not a lot went to the New Ship.

That’s it, they were, that's it. Can you ever remember any of your family being connected with the Temperance Movement?

R- No.

Did you ever sign the pledge?

R- No.

'Cause there were a lot of people, young people who signed the pledge.

R- Yes, yes. No, I never needed to do, because I wasn’t, I never …

Well no but, you know, I mean, a lot of people signed ...

R- Yes, yes.

Did anybody ever say anything to you about the evils of drink?

R- I don’t think so.

No. Can you ever remember seeing women going into pubs?

R- Not when I was young, no. I remember being at Douglas once when I was about eighteen or nineteen you know. We met some boys, and we were staying in a boarding house just by the Castle Mona Hotel on the front. We met these boys and they were nice boys from Keighley. And they said “Would you like to go in, in the Castle Mona bar for a drink?” I said “I've never been in a public house in my life!” They said “Well, you can go and have a lemonade.” You know, they were just going to have a beer. They’d be about 20 you know? Two years older than us. I'd be nineteen. I think it was the last time I went to Douglas before the war. So we went in, my friend and myself, and I were frightened to death of any Barlickers who was coming in seeing me in a bar.


But were there any other ladies in there?

R- Well it was afternoon. I can’t remember but 1 were, I just thought I hope to goodness no Barlicker is coming here and finds me in a pub. Me mother would, I don't know what she’d have done.

Can you ever remember, do you know of anybody whose lives have been spoiled by drink? You know ...

R - Well, I'm going to tell you a personal thing now, Billy's father was a big drinker, he went through a lot of money and yet he, I liked him. But you see, when he got married again, he was a very clever business man, they were manufacturers in Barrowford. But when trade came bad he couldn’t face it, and he used to go in to drink then. He hadn’t the willpower to put up with it. And he used to go into drink for a few weeks at once. You know? And I know it's a personal thing is this, and yet he was the most entertaining man, I’d always liked him. And when he got married again she was a right strict, you know, right bossy and she kept him off drink and I admired her for it. Although she was a masterful woman and she was a big smart woman and he was a big smart man. They were a very smart couple. But she kept him off the drink.

Isn’t that a marvellous thing, that she could.

{I’ve omitted some personal details here as they don’t really concern us, sorry, but Emma would have agreed]

R- And those two, Billy's step brother thought the world of him. They thought the world of him. And the youngest boy, Mr Clark used to take him up into Scotland on his holydays and he were only about eighteen was Arthur the youngest. Eh, and they had a motorbike and sidecar then and they did enjoy it and Arthur thought the world of him. And they, both boys did, he was a really grand fellow. It was just his drink you know? When he got into drink

Of course there were quite a few of them. I've heard people talk a lot about Aaron Nutter.

R- Oh yes. Ephraim.

Oh now. That's it. Well, I might have got the name wrong.

R- Aaron. Yes there was Aaron, but he wasn't one of the sons you know? He was a relative. Aaron wasn’t one of Nutter Brothers.

That's it, yes. But Aaron used to, he used to like his drink.

R- Yes I think, yes I think he would and he was a right grand fellow, too. Yes.


Do you say so? Somebody told me, it was Billy Brooks, he told me a story about Aaron Nutter and a man that Billy calls Tom O’Teds. This Tom O’Teds was a friend of Billy Brook's father. They used to work together when they were weavers. And he tells about Aaron Nutter and Tom O’Teds getting drunk one night. And they came out of the pub and they were in the main street and he said Aaron Nutter stood there in the street and started singing “I care for nobody, no not I, and nobody cares for me.” And Tom O’Teds says to him, he says ''Well I wish you and your nobody'd keep quiet, you are making too much noise!” And he said it finished up - he says - it got to fighting. And he said they were friends. It’s a good job the police didn't call.

R- Eh, I remember him yes, and very well. Yes, he had two daughters.

Aye. So what relation would he be to…

R- He was some relation, I don't know what …

To the Nutter family?

R - Perhaps he’d be cousin to the father, to Jim Nutter, old Jim Nutter. He may have been. He were related to them but he wasn't one of the Nutters, James Nutters sons.

That's it. You see one of the, it isn't the only reason that I wanted to do some recording with you, but one of the reasons why I wanted to do some recordings with you is because you know a lot about the relationships of the Nutters to each other. And you see my main stay there was poor old Sidney, You know, Sidney Nutter.

R – Yes.

And you see Sidney died you know?

R – Yes, now which, who was his father? Was it Tom? Tom Nutter?

Now I'm not really certain but Sidney always said that he wasn’t one of the Nutter millions. He always used to say that, it was a little private joke of his. He always used to say “I'm a Nutter, but I'm not one of the Nutter millions!” And evidently his father was never, you know, they weren’t part of the main stream of the Nutter family like the Jim Nutter and Wilfred and… I have an idea that Eughtred Nutter is either his brother or his cousin. I’m am not sure which.

(35 min)

R - Well if it’s his brother he is one of the Nutters. You see Tom and Ted Nutter who lived at Grimestopes..

That's where Sidney used to live, at Grimestopes.

R – Well his father was one of the Nutters, but you see they were both drinkers were the fathers.

That’s it. He's always said, he’s told me that, and his father was a terrible drinker.

R – Yes, they both were.

Yes, and he says that's the reason why he wasn't further into the firm.

R - Yes, that's right and he died fairly young. Now, I remember when he were dying and I was away on holiday with my friend and we were at Hemsworth and her uncle was the station master there. And Tom Nutter died while I was there and I was twenty. So that’s 63 years since, this July, since his father died. [1915]

Aye, that's it,

R - Now how old, how old will he be now?


Well, Sidney were, his father must have died just about when Sidney was born then, because Sidney was 62 his last birthday so…

R - Well he is Tommy Nutter’s son. Yes, and they lived next door to one another. 'Cause Ted Nutter, I knew their boys ‘cause there was Harry, Fred and Arthur. So he was Tommy Nutter’s son. You know Norah Nutter? Do you know, have you ever heard him talk about Norah Nutter? That was his sister and he was born, you know, quite a few years after the others.

Yes, that's it, yes,

R - He was born on the same day and the same time as Norman Clark, and that was Billy’s brother’s son, and he died when he was 39 did Norman(?) did George Clark’s son and they were about the same time.

Yes, well, we'll get further into that later because I'm very interested in the relationships of some of these families because, you know, it was a very close-knit, the manufacturers themselves were a very close-knit body of men you know. I mean, there was, a lot of them were in different firms with each other, they were all …

R – Yes, yes. Well we were, Billy and I were very friendly with Rupert who lived at the Homelands. We used to play every Saturday night, bridge with each other. And Billy and Rupert went to Burnley football match, they had a ticket in the stand, for the stand, and they went every Saturday afternoon to Burnley football match and then either his wife’d come down here or I'd go up there and then sometimes we’d go out for a meal instead of having tea.

That’s it.

R – We’d go out to Stirk House or Thornton Manor and then come back and play bridge for the evening and we always played till twelve o'clock dead on, finish. And about nine o'clock Rupert’d say “Who'd like a cup of tea?” Always went to make a cup of tea at nine o’clock. And then we’d have our supper, about ten. Yes.

Aye, Football widows, Football widows.

R - Yes, Well, Saturday afternoon that was and we had a few weekends away with them. And we went to Bournemouth with them for a week once, with Rupert and his wife.

Now, to get back to Barlick, can you ever remember street entertainers? People going round singing or…


R - Only at Christmas, choirs going round you know, choirs going round singing at Christmas. No, I don't think I can, No, I remember them Barrel Organs. Can't you?

Oh yes I’ve seen a barrel organ, yes.

R - Oh yes. They used to come round and oh we thought it were marvellous. Barrel organs and collecting you know? Sometimes they’d have a monkey.

Yes. Were those the ones on wheels or the ones on a stick?

R – Yes. No, on a wheel, on wheels. Yes you know, they used to wheel them all round the town.

That's it, yes. Knife grinders?

R - Pardon?

Knife grinding?

R - Oh yes. They used to come into the mills. Yes. You know, if you wanted your scissors sharpening, yes.

That's it, aye. Yes, Ernie tells a nice little story about a knife grinder in Barlick and they used to call him Flagger. And he was too poor to afford a grinding stone so what he used to do, he used to take the knives and go round the corner and sharpen them on kerb stones.

(40 min)

R - Oh well these were proper ones you know, they had the machines. And they used to come round to the mills and you always got your own scissors back. It's amazing how he could remember them.

Yes. Now, because I mean, every weaver would haves at least one pair of scissors.

R- Oh yes. You couldn’t do without scissors and a reed hook.

That’s it, yes. Andy what did you think about Barlick in those days? You know, Barnoldswick, what did you think about it as a place to live?

R - Oh we thought it were grand. I never thought about anything, anywhere else. Only we lived from one year to another for a holiday. We used to have to save up a year for a holiday.

That’s it yes. Just coming back to something there you see, saving up for a year for a holiday. I've talked to people who said that there were a lot of people in those days who used to save up for a year to go on t’rant, to get drunk.

R - Oh well, I've never heard of that.

Oh yes, there is more than one told me that you know. I mean, you know, this was when things were really bad, you know. Because they always used to say, there used to be a saying in Salford you know, that the quickest way out of Salford was four pints of ale.

R - I've never heard that before.

Now you can understand it you know. People were living in miserable conditions you know? And they’d save up for a year just so that they could go out and get drunk and stay drunk for three or four days.

R - Oh goodness!

And that was the same as a holiday for them.

R – Well! Never heard of that before.


Andy can you remember going to any weddings when you were young? Say, before you started work?

R – No.

Or funerals?

R – No I can’t remember going to a funeral because our grandparents and all our relatives lived away.

That’s it. Of course they did, yes. Aye. Where did you enjoy going most when you were a child? If somebody came to you one morning - I'm not talking about annual holidays now - if somebody came to you one morning and said “Emma Jane, you can have a treat today, where would you like to go?” What do you think you'd have said?

R - To the seaside I should think, Yes.

Aye. Aye that’s it. Go to the seaside for a day. Because of course they used to run trips by rail out of Barlick each week didn’t they?

R - Oh yes, they did at the holidays. You know, your weekly tickets you know, to go Saturday and come back Saturday.

How about day excursions at weekend?

R - Yes I think they used to do that when I was in me teens. I can’t remember when I was little. They used to be able to go to Blackpool you know? To Blackpool, and it was so much and you could go into the Winter Gardens and come back, it was only sixpence to go into the Winter Gardens and dance all evening and come back on the train. I've never been but I know, I know we’d been to Douglas, well I hadn't been that year, I wasn't old enough to go, my mother wouldn’t let me go because my four, three friends were going, well there were four friends then and the parents were going and three of them. Two of them, their parents weren't going but two of them the parents were going, but I hadn't to go. My mother wouldn't let me go although the two parents were going. So I had to go to Llandudno with me sister Grace and her husband which I did. And what was I going to tell you? Oh, and these, two of these girls they got on with two boys from Lancaster and they wanted them to go to Morecambe you see, these two girls, and they said “Oh well, we have, there's four of us you know, we have two friends we never go anywhere without” “Well bring them as well.” So we went to Morecambe for half a day. I think it was a half a crown, something like that. Saturday afternoon, got back on Skipton Station at night about a quarter past eleven you know, to catch the Barlick train, to change at Skipton. No train, it had gone twenty minutes before. There we were stranded at Skipton, half past eleven at night. Well, we didn't know what to do and there was a young man, he was on the train and he came from Colne. So well, there’s nothing else we can do, we shall have


to set off and walk. So we walked from Skipton, it was four o'clock in the morning when we got home. And we went to my friend’s house and we all sat up you know, we daren’t, none of us dared go home by ourselves, we were terrified being out at that time. Never been out at that time, ever. And we sat there till breakfast time. And you know we were half asleep and of course as we had breakfast down we went home and my mother were frantic you know, she couldn't tell what’d

(45 min)

happened. There were no telephone, no one of us had telephone in those days. And she says “Where ever have you been?” I says “Well the train had gone when we got to Skipton.” And of course she believed me and of course she couldn’t do anything else only believe us. She said “Well, where have you been?” I said “We have been at Maggie's, we have been at Maggie’s. The fire hadn’t gone out when we got home, you know it was just a bit of fire, parents probably stopped up perhaps till twelve or so waiting for her coming home, 'cause she was an only girl. And anyway we got over it, we got over it. It was all right as long as they knew. But they were very worried when we hadn’t got home you know?

Aye, that's it. That’s one of the advantages of having a telephone as you are saying isn’t it. I mean you can let people know.

R – Yes, yes. And the young man walked with us, he walked with us. And I says “I daren’t go past that churchyard at Thornton” I says “We’ll walk on to Earby and come back over the fields.” Which we did. I daren’t come past that churchyard you know how you are when you are about sixteen, they used to talk about ghosts walking about in church. “Oh.” I says, “I daren't go past that churchyard at Thornton.”

SCG/20 January 2003
7,004 words.


TAPE 78/AK/03 SIDE 1


R- Well, there’s, you know where Steeles live?

Yes, that new bungalow. [Opposite Bancroft Farm on Manchester Road]

R- No, no. Before you get round the corner to Homelands which is at the corner. [?]

Yes that’s it.

R- Well, Jim Nutter built those and he built the two further down, and I think those were the first two that were built. And then those up Manchester Road next to Fred Steele’s bungalow, this side, he built those and he built Grimestopes, he built all his sons one but for Ephraim, because Ephraim lived at Glen View I think, Ephraim was the eldest. Yes he was.

And Grimestopes is down at Coates isn't it?

R- No, down Gisburn Road.

Gisburn Road, that’s it yes. Because - now wait a minute – ah, that’s it, because those houses up there that we are talking about that Jim Nutter built, those would be some of the first houses in Barlick to have electric light because that electricity came from the mill.


R - Oh, did it? But the mill weren’t built then. [Bancroft]

No, but when they built the mill… Because they didn't get public electricity till about 1930 did they? [September 1929] Andy when they built the mill, those couple of farms, Bancroft I think it was and Moses Lea, Newfield Edge and those houses up at the top there were on 110 Volts DC from batteries in the cellar at the mill. They were charged up during the day from the engine because I went into Newfield Edge oh, about three or four months ago. I was talking to the lady there and I noticed that there's some electric light fittings that aren't used and she said that they didn’t take them out because they were so beautiful, they were all brass. And I had a look

at them and I said, “Do you know these are DC fittings.” You know, very old fittings. You know there are two sorts of electricity, AC and. DC, well we are on AC now, and they were 110 Volt DC. That’s what that’d be there and I bet that come from the mill as well.

R- Yes, probably.


Anyway, I’ll tell you want I want to ask you about this week. There’s two things in particular. One of them is when you started working and the other one, I think we’ll start with it. It’s a nice pleasant subject for ladies, It’s really about the condition of woman in those days, you know, the sort of circumstances that women had to put up with in those day. Because I think meself that they were you know, that they were a lot different than they are today. You know, for instance I think I've asked you before what sort of a life you think that your mother had.

R – Yes, bringing up a big family yes.

Yes, that’s it.

R – Well, when my mother, when we were little children you see there were no amusements in Barlick at all. Oh, it was Chapel, Sunday School and Chapel and things connected with it. That was our life really you know? There was no other enjoyment only going for walks. But that’s between 70 and 80 years since you know?

Well yes but, I mean, the thing is that things were like that then, and I mean nowadays, people are used to all sorts of labour saving devices aren’t they. But in those days I think I heard you say that your mother didn’t even have carpet sweeper until she went down Gisburn Road.

(5 min)

R- Oh I can remember getting our first carpet sweeper and we thought it was marvellous. Even in them days we had to take the carpets up and beat them at spring cleaning. I mean, they don’t take


the dust, they don't go through you know and draw the dust out, they only take the top off.

That's it, yes.

R - I still have a carpet sweeper.

Oh, we used to as well.

R – Yes, just to take crumbs up you know#. If you don’t want to take your vacuum out.

Of course I've always thought the trouble with vacuum cleaners is they take the carpet and all don’t they?

R - They what?

They take the carpet and all don’t they?

R – Well, I don't know, we always said dust in your carpet wears your carpet more than a vacuum does because it takes the dust out you see? Whether that’s for, so that people will buy vacuums or not I don’t know.

Your mother really was relatively lucky wasn’t she because…

R- Yes, you see when she married my father he had two daughters who were growing up you see. Now, my sister Sarah was eighteen years older than me and then there was another sister older, perhaps two years older, so she’d be twenty you see, but that was when I was born you see. They'd be practically working when my mother married my father. You know, they’d be not so far off working.

So I mean, in some ways that would make it easier for her, but I mean a lot of women were in a position where, in order to keep the home going, they had to go…


R- They had to go out to work yes, they had to go out to work.

That’s what I mean, yes.

R - And then if they had any children they used to have to take them out at six o’clock in the morning to be nursed with somebody else. And then they paid these people who looked after the child. And then they’d call for it at night. But I mean, that never happened to any of us because you see my mother was in that position that she didn’t need to go out to work because me father was working and the two oldest sisters were working,

Yes, that’s it. And did you know anybody that did childminding?

R- Oh I know lots of people who looked after little, young children before they could go to school yes. Oh, I’ve seen women carrying babies at six o'clock in the morning you know, before six o'clock because work started at six o’clock in those days you know? And it was murder. Wicked!

Well it was.

R- I was heart broken you know. I used to go to my work every morning asleep. You know? I used to go with me sister you know and I had my arm in hers and I was asleep.

At what age did you start work Mrs Clark?

R- I started at twelve, going half time.

When you started, what mill did you start at?

R- Nutters at Bankfield, I never worked anywhere else.

Yes, Nutters. There’d be Nutters and Bradleys in the same shed weren’t there?

R- ‘Cause my husband’s brother married Miss Bradley [Ella] you know.

Aye, that’s right.


R- That’s why we spent all our courting days up at Highfield House. It’s called Deerstones now. When Bill Bailey went to live there he changed the name from Highfield House to Deerstones but it was Highfield House when it was built. Beautiful houses you know? But big, they’re too big. But they’re beautiful houses, you needed a lot of money. I used to think it was heaven on earth up there because they’d money for anything you know.[January 2003. I have been getting very confused about Highfield House and decided to nail down where it was. Emma had led me to believe it was down Gisburn Road somewhere but in fact it is at Coates just off Greenberfield Lane on the left about 150 yards from The main road and Moorfield on the corner. I went down there this morning, knocked on the door and asked. There are two houses there built by the Brooks family, there is no trace of the tennis courts.]

And what was it like going to work first thing in the morning in the dark to the mill?

R- Oh well, it was dirty roads you know, no tarmac roads and when it was wet the road was filthy. Oh it was horrible. I thought so. Yes, I did. I didn’t dislike weaving really but I didn’t like the life.

How did the, and you were working down there, how 1ong were you, when you went half timing you’d be a helper weaver, tenting, wouldn’t you?

R- Yes, well until after I learned to weave, yes, and then I got half a crown a week.

Who paid you that?

(10 min)

R- The people I tented for. It was a married couple and they had ten looms between them and I was supposed to run the two you know? But they were there to help me you see, I was only just learning to weave you see?

In point of fact you were being paid by them and not by the management.

R- Oh no.

That’s right, yes.

R- But then you got looms of your own you see, but you couldn't have looms of your own till you’d left school. Well, I didn’t leave school till I was fourteen because I’d stopped on, I’d been off that much, I used to run away.


You’ve never told me about this!

R- You see my friends, their mother used to say “Well, it’s a nice afternoon, you can go for a picnic.” And I thought well if they can go, I’m going! And I never used to tell me mother and if you hadn’t got your full attendance you had to go for another year to school.

Oh! Is that right?

R- Yes, but I mean, I didn’t mind, I liked school.

Oh so you actually left school when you were fourteen.

R – Yes.

So you wouldn't get, officially you wouldn’t get your own looms until you were fourteen?

R- No, and then I got two looms and I hadn’t two looms long and then I got three looms and then I got four. And then my sister and I had five looms and there aren’t many men that had five looms in those days, not a lot.

So your sister and you were running a ten looms set between you? Now that was a lot in those days!

R- Yes and during the war we were on six each because you know there were such a lot of men gone to the war.

Yes, well that's something that I want to talk to you about later, about the war, what went on during the war. Now, when you were in the shed weaving, you'd have to carry your own weft would you?

R- Oh yes, and got your own pieces into the warehouse as well. Yes.

Yes? Plait them on the loom?

R- Pardon?

Plait them on the loom?

R- Yes.

That’s it, yes.

R- And take them into the warehouse, put them on the table and then you see they’d book them down. And you had a card you know? You got a card when they put your warp in.


Did you ever get called into the warehouse for a fault? Can you remember?

R- Once, only once.

Tell me about it.

R- Well, I’d gone without, I used to wear, I had to wear glasses you know? And when I was going to school, the school inspector, perhaps about two or three years before I left, they used to come round did the school inspector to examine your eyesight. Well they found my I was short-sighted, I had good sight for distance but I was short-sighted. Well, I had to wear glasses in the mill. Well I’d gone without me glasses this day because I never wore them, you only wear them for going to work, and I’d let an end run down about a yard. Perhaps the only time I was ever called up you know and I said “I haven’t me glasses, I couldn’t see.” But I’ll tell you something, Liza, she had a son called Harold and he had two looms next to me had Harold, he was learning the business. [This is confusing. Liza Nutter was one of James Nutter’s daughters and she married John Slater. I think Emma has made a mistake and the lad she’s talking about is Liza’s brother. The only other alternative is that there was another Liza who was wife to one of the Nutter sons. All is well! Later on she corrects this and makes it clear it was Harold Slater because she’d married a Slater.] He had two looms next to me had Harold, he was learning the business. He’s dead now, he died, oh he’s been dead above ten years, nearly twenty years I should think. Oh and he was a right nice lad you know? And he’d be perhaps two years older than me and he had two looms next to me. Well, he wore glasses and this morning I could see he were struggling away you know and he hadn’t his glasses on. And then he came to me and he says “Do you mind Emma, do you mind taking these ends up for me, I can’t see them. I’ll run your looms for you while you do it.” And he was the boss, you know, he was one of the Nutters. His mother was Liza. And so I did. Anyway, when I came back to me own two he’d let the ends come down. But it wasn’t so bad, he couldn’t see it you see.


And he was a right nice lad was Harold, in his teens. And he once asked me to go for a walk with him when he was about seventeen but I never went because I believe he was getting to be a bit of a star then. And he finished up, well, he got to drinking and his mother were very upset about him. And then, eventually, he got married, he married a nurse and, he used to live, you know where I told you where Jim Nutter used to live?

(15 min)

Yes, opposite the mill in that end house.

R- Yes well he used to live at the other end in that house when he got married did. Harold. And oh he got into a right drinking… Anyway he got married and I think they had a bit of a rough time. Anyway, they left Barlick and then they had a baby and he just turned round and he was different altogether. He never touched drink or anything. I think they lived near Blackburn somewhere, no, not Blackburn, Bolton, somewhere on there. He died quite young, he wouldn’t be above fifty I don’t think and his wife died of cancer two years since. They went to live at Blackpool and she was a nice person, she used to play bridge with us when she came over, she was very friendly with Mrs Pickard. And when she came over, Alice, Mrs Pickard, asked her to play with us. She used to have a box here to put her cards in. Her arm was like a big pudding and she'd to have a cushion and she’d pick her cards out to play bridge. She was so brave, she knew what was happening to her and yet she never grumbled about it and she died two years since. She lived in a nice semi at Blackpool and she had a son and he was engaged and she said she wanted to live until he got married. They got married and she died about a year after and she was so pleased that her son had got married. She was a very nice person. Sorry to interrupt you.

No, no. That’s right enough. The world doesn’t stop for this. And so while you’re working at Bankfield, when you first went to work there you’d go in, it’d be 1909 wouldn’t it? You were fourteen.

R- I was twelve when I went at first.

Yes but I mean when you were full time?

R- Oh yes.

Yes. So when you were going full time that’d be…

R- Well, I was born in 1895.

Yes, so that would be 1909. Yes, So the number 2 shed that they built, they’d be building that while you were working there?

R- Which other shed?

Well, there was the big shed they built in 1905, that Nutters and Bradleys were in wasn't there? And then they built that shed that Sagars went into, Sidney Sagar and the others.

R- Oh yes, who were the others? There were a few of them. Baxter and Whipp and yes, Sidney Sagar, he had, I think he had 400 looms or two hundred looms.

That’s it, so while you were working there?

R- Oh yes. That was built after I started working.

Yes, 1910 that shed started.

R- Oh did it?

Yes. So I was just wondering whether you'd…

E - Which shed?

Sidney Sagar. Aye, 1910, I know that date’s right because I have an old letter book of theirs, of Sagars and it gives the date when the engine started.


R- Yes it would be because I was working full time when it started.

That’s it, I was just wondering whether you could remember anything about them building it.

R- Well, I can remember them building it but that’s all.

Yes, that’s it.

R- There was Sidney Sagar and there was Baxter and Whipp. Who else was there? I can’t remember anyone else.

Aye that’s right. Was it fairly common for a manufacturer’s son to learn how to weave?

R- Well, he learned to weave to learn the business that’s all.

Yes I realise that but it’s like starting from the bottom isn’t it.

R- Yes, they had to learn from the beginning.

Would you say that was fairly common in those days?

R- Well in my day it was. Harold Slater, his mother married a Slater you see, she was Liza Nutter and her father was James Nutter and she married John Slater, well they used to call him Johnny. He was a cloth-looker at Nutters was her husband and Harold was learning the business and he’d to learn to weave see?

Aye. Did you have loom sweepers in those days or did you sweep your own?

R- Oh we swept our own. We had to do everything ourselves.

That’s it. That’s right. Was there a canteen?

R- No, there was just a boiler where you could go and brew your tea for breakfast. You took your own tea and your own mug. Some of the men used to have what they called kits. [Brew cans]

Yes, that’s it.

R- With a lid on but we always had our own mugs and took our tea and milk and sugar. [I can remember small double ended tins like oval mustard tins which held tea at one end and sugar at the other.]

Was that free that water or did they charge you for it?

R- Oh no, they didn’t charge for it.

Oh some mills did. Yes, aye.

R- No they didn’t, no. They were a good firm to work for were Nutter’s. If you did for Nutter’s they’d do for you. It was a good firm to work for.

Now at that time there’d be Nutters Brothers as well, another firm, wouldn’t there? There was James Nutter’s…


R- James Nutter and Sons.

Yes And then there were two more firms of Nutters weren't there. WD & E Nutter’s…

R- Yes, that’s right, they lived up here. Yes.

Yes? And there was also Nutter Brothers wasn’t there.

R – Yes, but that was Rupert &. Randall.

Yes. Now where did they weave, can you remember?

R- Yes, I think it was at Wellhouse Mill as far as I can remember. Was it at Earby? Did they have a place at Earby?

That’s it. Some of the Nutters did weave at Earby at one time but I’m not sure just when.

R- Yes, I think they were Rupert and Randall, the two youngest.

Yes, now I have heard it said, I don’t know whether it’s right or not, that it was Nutter Brothers who started to build Bancroft.

R- Yes it probably would be. I can remember the father dying [James Nutter] and I’d be only in my early teens. [He died on February 14th 1914 so Emma would be 19.]

And yet it was James Nutter and Sons that moved from Bancroft. [This was wrong] That’s the story I’ve been told. Now I don't know whether it’s true or not. I haven't asked anybody else but what I’ve been told is this, just see whether you know anything about it. They told me that at that time James Nutter was weaving down at Bankfield with 900 looms.

R- Yes, nearly 1000 looms.

Well that’s it, yes. Over 900 , that’s it. And I was told that Nutter Brothers actually first conceived the idea of building Bancroft Shed only then, when they started to build it, they weren’t going to call it Bancroft Shed.

R- Oh, weren’t they?

They were going to call it Newfield Shed.

R- Oh yes, like after Newfield Edge.

That’s it, Newfield Shed. But I think that from the impression I get, they realised that they’d bitten off a bit more than they could chew.

R - Well you see the war came, the war came and they were held up.

Yes, and what they tell me is that Nutter Brothers came to an arrangement with James Nutter and sons and James Nutter’s took over Bancroft and Nutter Brothers moved into Bankfield in place of James Nutter’s. Now whether that’s right or not I don’t know. I keep asking. And so you don’t know anything about that?

R - No.

That would be after the first world war. Yes.

R - Yes, well, after the first world MW you see I was married in 1920 but I still worked at Nutters at Bankfield for nearly four years, until 1924.

[Latest information about this question in 2003 is that James Nutter and Sons were one of the original tenants in Bankfield no. 1 shed when it was built in 1905. Rupert Nutter and Co was weaving at Grove and Albion in Earby and as Nutter and Turner at Sough Bridge mill. James Nutter formed the original concept of building Bancroft Shed but his death seems to have caused the handover of the project to Rupert Nutter. It looks as though he went in with his brother Randall and formed Nutter Brothers at this time. This was a new firm and was separate from R Nutter and Company. Nutter Brothers are mentioned as running Bancroft in a report in the Craven Herald dated 23 April 1930. It was at about this time when R Nutter and Company ran into trouble and failed and it seems that it was at this time that Wilfred Nutter took over Bancroft trading as James Nutter and Sons, the old firm which was in Bankfield with 900 looms.]

So that’d be James Nutter and Sons at Bankfield and you were working for them there until 1924.

R- Yes, early 1924. I went, when I got married I said I was going out to work and I did. Mind you, I gave up the first week we paid the house off.

Well, that’s interesting because that mill started in, I think it was winter of 1920. [Christened on March 13 1920 and started soon afterwards, see Jack Platt evidence] Can you remember anything about Bancroft starting?

(25 min)

R- No I can’t. My brother was an overlooker there.[Fred Greenwood.] He went from Bankfield to Bancroft because he lived in one of those bungalows that face down to Salterforth. He was an overlooker there.

That’s it, so that means that Bancroft Shed started before James Nutters left Bankfield.

R- Oh yes.

So it looks to me as though it could have been Nutter Brothers that started Bancroft Shed.

R- Could be but I wouldn’t know.

But of course it’s no use saying it if we don’t know. So, you are weaving down at James Nutters at Bankfield and you’d met your husband.

R - I met my husband in 1916.

And then he had to go away to the war.

R- Yes, it was at the Liberal ‘At Home’ and he fell madly in love with me although I say it myself. I couldn’t get away, everywhere I were, he were there!

Aye, it sounds like a serious case!

R- Oh I know, we used to go out with a lot of, about four or five boys. We’d gone out with them from being about 15 and one of them said to me, well it was Sidney Brooks’ brother, Christopher Brooks’ brother, he were one of them. He says “Are you serious with Willy Emma?” I says “Oh, I don’t know, I never thought of settling down yet.” He says “Well, he’s a nice lad”


I says “Oh, yes he is, he’s very nice.” Anyway he had to join up at the end of March. I only knew him six weeks before he joined up. Anyhow, he wanted to write to me and all the rest of it and it went on from there.

So he joined up in March 1916, now was that conscription or…

R- No.

He volunteered?

R- Yes. Him and Frank Barrett you know. You know Frank Barrett the laundry man? Well his father and Billy and another young fellow were all pals and so was Eddie Bradley, Billy’s brother married Eddie Bradley’s sister. But he wasn’t going to join up but these other three wanted to get into the machine gun corps. They all had motor bikes and they were interested in things like that. They could have gone long since but they wanted to get in this corps and they’d to wait a bit. They went in in March, I know it was March, the end of March. So I’d only known him between six or seven weeks, I liked him but still you know, I couldn’t say it was really serious. But you see it goes on and I couldn’t have had a better man. One of the best of husbands was Billy.

So he went away to war and you were still weaving during the First World War. Was there food rationing during the First World War?

R- I can’t remember. See, all we thought about it were having a good time.

If you can’t remember it, it doesn’t matter.

R- I can’t remember.

Now can you remember anything being short during the first world war? Did the war have any effect on you? Did it have any noticeable effect on you, did it stop you doing anything that you usually did?


R- Oh yes. Well you see we didn’t go on holiday like we did before. No, not the same. I mean, it was terrible. It was a terrible thing was the first world war. I mean, there were next door neighbours, their boy died. You know they were mown down in France weren’t they, they were just mown down every day you know. There was somebody you knew or somebody that your family knew, some of your family knew. It was a terrible time. And then that horrible flu came you know. That horrible flu, and scores of people, young people in Barlick died. I had two friends of mine, not that I went out with but two people that I knew very well, they both died with it. And we were all in bed with it at home, four sisters and me father and mother and I'd never been as ill in me life as I was, never. And, what did they call it? Asian flu? [Spanish actually]

What year was that?

R- That was nineteen, I think that was 1918, 1917 … It was 1917 I think. It was before the war finished. Yes, I think it would be 1917. It was horrible, I’d never been as ill in my life and there were funerals every day.

It was so bad?

R- Oh it was shocking, shocking. People said that you could see funerals going down Skipton Road every day. Just for a period. Well I know me and me girl friends, Billy was away at the war of course. One of them had a brother in law that lived at Gisburn, he was a policeman at Gisburn, and we often used to go for the day, four girls of us. They used to love us to go, because it was quiet you know, there were no buses or anything in them days. And we used to set off in the morning and have our dinner there and tea, four of us, and they used to love us to go.

You walked there of course?

R- Oh yes, there was no other way of going. And I felt on top of the world that morning. And after dinner I didn’t feel so well at all. I don’t know how I ever walked home that night. And as soon as I got in me mother said “Up them stairs you go!” and I was in bed a week and I’d never been as poorly in my life. I was weeks and weeks before I could walk fast at all. I was walking right slow. I was off my work for a month and then I slowly came to and I’m still living


That’s it. And while you were at work then, did you ever join the Weavers Union?

R- No.

Did anybody ever ask you to join?

R- No. I don’t know but we never did. But there was a strike on at one time but we worked.

When was the strike? Can you remember?

R- Oh I can’t remember when it was. It was before I was married but I can’t remember when it was, what it was about or anything. But we didn’t strike because we didn’t believe in it. We didn’t believe in unions because the unions were only just beginning then you know.

That’s right. And when there was a strike were the looms filled up? Did other people come in?

R- Oh no, not everybody, no.

No? But I mean, were there enough tramp weavers to fill the looms up?

R- No, there were quite a few looms stopped.

Can yon remember tramp weavers waiting in the warehouse?

R- Oh yes.

Tell me about that.

R- Well, they used to come in, it started at six, the mill, it started at six in the morning you know. And sometimes there’d be half a dozen men, and if someone didn’t turn up for work they’d put a tramp weaver on for the day. They used to live at the Model Lodging House down Butts. That used to be what they called the Model Lodging House where a lot of these tramp weavers used to live. Yes and they’d come and stand and if there was no work, well, they’d go home, they’d go back. Sometimes there’d be one or two, you know if anybody was ill and couldn’t come top work, but you hadn’t to do. You’d to have an excuse for not going and you hadn’t to be late. You know Ted Nutter, he always used to be standing and I were always late. I were always last up at home. Me father used to get up early and make toast for us all and I used to, I couldn’t waken. I was terrible, awful and all the others were good getters up but not me and I slept with me sister and she’d get up but Emma wouldn’t waken.


You sound a bit like Vera.

R - I couldn’t waken. And me father used to say "I get up at half past four and five o'clock to make you lot toasts and you can’t get up.” And they used to 1augh at me. I used to stand in front of the mirror to do me hair with me eyes shut. Oh it was hard work. To me it was cruel having to go to work at six o’clock.

(35 min)

It was.

R - Yet when I got there I was all right. And Ted Nutter used to be, he used to always be there before six and if you were late you’d get in a bit “Come, come, come” and that were all he used to say “Come, come, come”

And that’d be, they’d be on gas lighting down there then?

R- yes, mantles. They used to come round you know with a long taper, the tacklers.

That’s it. Aye. And I was just going to ask you sommat then. Gas lighting. I’ll come to it again. And in Winter, was the shed warm when you got in?

R- Yes. It was warm but not always warm enough do you know? Sometimes it was cold.

Yes. What was the heating system down there, was it overhead pipes?

R- Steam. Yes, steam from the boiler.

That’s it, yes. They were all the same, overhead piping, all warming the roof up and nothing going on to the looms. Aye. You that was what I wanted to ask you. Now tell me something, when you were weaving you’d be weaving with mule cops wouldn't you?

R- With what?

Mule cops, you know, paste bottom and paper bottom. You know, the weft.

R- Oh there were no paper inside the cops when we were weaving.

You were on paste bottoms then. Yes.

R- They were, it were the cops you know and you just had to work your way up.

Yes, that’s it. And if you didn’t broach your cop properly…

R- Oh yes you could make a mess of it. And you could make a lot of waste and you had to take your waste in every morning and it was Aaron Nutter you know [inspecting the waste] He was a relative of the Nutter family, not one of the brothers or anything but he never used to say anything to me. And me father was a weaver and he used to go out with Aaron at breakfast time, a few of them and Johnny Slater, Liza’s husband he used to go with them as well. Me father, Aaron and just a few of them and smoke at their pipes you know. But Aaron never, you know, and I didn’t like to have a lot of waste. ‘Cause I tried to be a good weaver you know. Well, I must have been because there weren’t many women had five looms. I didn’t like to have a lot of waste but if it were bad weft you couldn’t help it. You know, sometimes some makes of weft were better than others. There were Croft and Clover, I don’t know whether they are still going.

Croft’s still going.

R- Is it? Well we had Croft and Clover and one of them was better than the other. The other you know, you’d to be very careful or you couldn’t get your shuttle, your, you know, the steel pin, [shuttle peg] you couldn’t get that up the same.

Ah well, they were going anyway up to, we were still getting Croft up to not long since. Well nowadays you never know, they are going out just like that.

R- Yes. There were nothing only weaving here you know. Nothing, not another thing. There used to be Pickles engineers you know at New Mill. Well, they used to call it New Mill It’s, what do they call it now?


R- Wellhouse yes. Oh it was always called new Mill and Barrett’s laundry used to be there.

That’s it.

R - Before they built that one down Gisburn Street.

Yes, that’s right. And did you notice any difference during the First World War, was it noticeable that there were less men working?

R- Oh yes, definitely. Because you had to, I mean, definitely because a lot of them had to go. Next door to us they had three at the war and the middle one died, he was about my age, Frank Sagar. And he was one of the very early ones to go, and although they had a big family they were very upset about him, he were a nice lad.

Well. It was a terrible thing, I know.

R- Eh it was dreadful.

One of the good things that did come out of the First World War in a lot of peoples opinion was that it did a lot for women. Would you agree with that? You know what I mean don’t you? It brought women, perhaps not so much in Barlick because there’d always been a tradition of women working in the mills, but in a lot of places it enabled women to go out and take jobs that they’d never have been able to have before.

R- Yes, I suppose it would yes.

Would you agree with that?

R - Not In Barlick I don’t think ‘cause there was nothing else in Barlick. There was nothing only weaving in Barlick.

Yes that’s it. But it was really accepted that women did go out to work wasn’t it in war time.


R- Yes, Either you went into a shop or if you wanted to, if you were clever and went to the grammar school and went in for teaching. Well that was different you see but the usual thing was for ordinary people to go into the mill and there were some decent people in the mill, very decent people.

(40 min)

Oh yes. Just the same as there is now. Yes.

R - Yes, there is.

Would you say that as far as the manufacturers were concerned trade was good during the first world war?

R- What was good?


R- Oh yes, I should think so yes, I should say so. Because we ran six looms you know because there were so many men off, me sister and I had twelve looms. Not for a long time, perhaps for twelve months or so when such a lot had to go. To keep going you see.

How much a piece were you getting then, do you remember?

R- No I can’t. Well, the average wage for four looms was about 24/- So perhaps we’d make 34/- or something like that.

Aye. So you'd only be on about 4 shillings a piece at that wouldn't you?

R- Fourteen?

I say, about f our, I say you’d only be on about four shillings a piece at that.

R- Oh yes.

Because that’d be like six pieces.

R- No, six shillings if you had four looms.

Yes but I mean for each piece.

R- Oh yes, for each piece.

Because I mean, if you were really lucky you’d get two pieces off each loom in a week wouldn’t you.

R – Well. It just depends on what kind, you know.

Yes, but if it was an average sort and you were really lucky you’d get about six pieces of four looms in a week wouldn’t you.

R- Yes I should say so, yes.

So that’d make it about four bob apiece wouldn’t it.

R- Yes, that was the average wage was 24/- in the First World War.

And then of course the war ended in 1918 and Billy came back.

R- Billy came back. It ended in November and he came, he got a Christmas leave and he thought he’d get his demob but anyway he had to go back. But he was back in less than a week. He had to go back to Germany and he was back in less than a week.

In 1916 they went off and volunteered, they wanted to join.

R- Yes, oh yes.

And what did he have to say about it when he came back?

R- Well eventually he was in the Tank Corps you know. Was the …

Machine Guns.

R- Machine Gun Corps, it was the tanks and I know he just came home after he joined up, he came home after seven weeks and he said then they’d never been out of camp for over a month. There was something very secret going on. He never told me what it was and when it came out it was the tanks. He said it was a dead secret. And he said when the tanks went out the first time he said the Germans were staggered. And he didn’t come home then till I think it was about September when he came home, August perhaps. That was his last leave and he didn’t come home till twelve moths the following Christmas. So that was just over a year before he came home on leave. And of course we had corresponded all the time and when he came home on leave…. Oh I’ll tell you something now. He only come home for, he’d travelled all Friday night, he wrote to say that he’d be home on the Saturday. He was travelling all night and he’d come down for me and he’d be at the top of our street at two o’clock. So I knew he was there you know. I waited till about five past two but Billy was waiting. It was lovely weather so we had a lovely walk, that was all there were to do in those days. And he left me, his father had got married again and was living at Barrowford. Before he joined up, Billy was living with a friend of his mother’s and George as well but George got married before Billy joined up. So I left him at teatime and he said he’d be down again at about quarter to seven, top of our street. Well, he never landed. Oh well, and Jessie, my younger sister, she was about fourteen at the time and her friend, they kept going to the top of the street to see if he’d come. I said Oh well, I’ve finished with him, I’m not going out with him any more. I wouldn’t have cared but all my friends had gone out. I didn’t know where they were. So at nine o’clock, about a quarter to nine, I thought oh, I’m going to bed. He hadn’t turned up so I got undressed and went to bed. And about nine o’clock Olive comes in, she says Billy’s outside. And I said well he mun stay outside! She says don’t be so silly, he were travelling all night. She says he was travelling all night and he told Mrs Broughton to wake him at half past five and she’d never wakened him. He’d overslept…. [End of tape]

SCG/22 January 2003
7216 words.


TAPE 78/AK/03 SIDE 2


R- I’m sorry if I’m wasting all your time.

No you are not wasting nowt. You mustn’t keep saying that because you are not.

R - Aren't I ? No?

No, I wouldn't be here if you were wasting my time, you should know that. No. Now, so the war’s over and Billy got demobbed. He is back, and you being a bit stubborn, you're being a bit stubborn and you’re still in the mill and this is 1918. And of course you and Billy then would be courting wouldn't you?

R - Yes, we courted till 1920, we were married in 1920, November.

Yes. Now when did you get engaged?

R - Oh the first time he came home on leave. The first Christmas he came home on leave.

So you were engaged from, that’d be, was it Christmas 1916? Was it before you had the flu?

R – Yes, it was before I had the flu.

Flu was 1917 so that’d be Christmas 1916. So you were engaged for four years?

R - Yes, before I was married.

Yes, that’s what I meant, you had four years engagement.

R- I’d be 21 when I was engaged and I was married when I was 25.

Yes. Now would you say that was about an average age for getting married, 25?


R - Yes somewhere about. You see the war stopped, we’d probably have been married before if the War hadn’t come, perhaps a year or two before. You see he was only at home two years before we were married, we had to save up and ….

That’s it. Well that’s the interesting thing you see, now so when you came, when Billy actually came back after the war, was there a reason, you’ve just mentioned one, but I want you to tell me about the reasons you see. So there’d be a reason why you didn't get married straight away when Billy came back from the war.

R- Well, we had to save up you see. He went and his brother, [to the war] and his father… I’ve told you all that before about his father taking, he’d retired you know, and George was on the Royal Exchange …

Yes, well tell me again, it's right, you know it’s…

R - Well you see, Billy’s father was a cloth agent on the Royal Exchange at Manchester and George was with him ‘cause he was married was George you see. And then he was, when he got George into the business, well Mr Clark retired and he said “Now, when you get settled into it you take Billy in.” Of course the war came you see and Billy didn’t go into, on the Royal Exchange because the war came and George had to go and Billy had to go and Mr Clark went back and kept the business going. Now when the war was over and George came back his father says “Now, well you take Billy in now and pay him a wage.” And that’s what he did when he came home from the war.


So both of them went in together.

R- On the Royal Exchange yes. And George paid Billy a good wage. Well it was five pounds which was a good wage then, it was about double what a weaver would get you know? More than double. And so we saved up and we got married and we fastened the house. I said to Billy “I’m going out to work you know.” And he said “You’re not.” I says “Oh yes I am Billy, I’m going out to work till we have paid the house off.” “Well I shan’t agree unless you get off your work to do your work at home.” I says – “I mean to do that, I am not going to work at night!” And he says “All right, if you want to do it.” Which I did.


And which house was that Mrs Clark?

R - Top house in Ash Grove. By, the church, you know?

Yes. That’s it, yes.

R - And I think we paid £300 for it. I think It was £300 and I paid, we’d pay, and I put my wage in every week and we lived off, you know, what Billy had. And then as soon as we paid it off I finished. Oh and I were happy when I finished working.

(5 Min)

You would be, you would be, yes. Now in those days, how easy was it to.. Well I mean nowadays you hear people say that it can be difficult getting a loan off a building society, you know to buy a house. I assume that you bought it through a building society? Yes. And nowadays, unless you’ve got a certain income they won’t take you on will they. You know, they won’t take you on. Were there any difficulties in those days?

R - Well I should think there would be but you see we had, we were in a good position you see? Billy had a good job and I was working and likely for being so.

Yes. Which building society was it? Was it local?

R – Skipton.

Skipton? That was the one? Was that the only building society in Barlick? Skipton?

R -I don’t, I think it would be. I can’t remember any other.


And did they, have an agent or was it a solicitor that ran it for them or did they have an office?

R - They had an office in Ellis Street. You know where Ellis Street is? Up to the Wesleyan School.

That’s right, yes.

R –Yes. Well, the bottom house there, and it was there then.

That’s right. And so you stayed at work until you’d paid for the house. Now tell me about Billy’s job, what exactly did a cloth agent do, what was the business?

R - A cloth agent, he has to go to somebody who wants the cloth. You see, they’re buying the cloth. Now the agent goes round to the manufacturer and gets the cheapest price he can. And then he goes to the buyer and says “Well, I can get so much.” You know. And of course he takes the lowest price if he can rely on the manufacturer and then they get so much a piece commission on every piece that’s sold.

That's it. Yes.

R - Now George had a very good connection ‘cause he was with Sassoon’s of India. Have you heard of them?


R - Sir Philip, Sir Philip Sassoon and Sir Rupert Sassoon. They were big manufacturers in India, cotton manufacturers. Well you see George, when he booked cloth, he’d book thousands at once whereas an ordinary man, an ordinary manufacturer he’d perhaps book a hundred or two hundred pieces. But George’s were always in thousands. He had a marvellous business.

So Sassoon’s, they were weaving in India weren’t they?

R - They were weaving, they had mills in India.

{It all got a bit confusing here but the gist of what Emma was saying was that the agent got the cheapest cloth he could and sold it to his customers. In George’s case, a lot was cheap imports from Sassoon’s mills in India.]

R - But they were big cotton manufacturers in India.

Yes, that’s it, aye.

R - They were very wealthy.

Yes well a lot of people don’t realise how many British Firms and British Managers as well were weaving in India even then.

(10 min)

R- Yes, my Billy’s brother, he was out in India. He was engaged to a girl and her uncle and aunt were out in India and they got Arthur out in India as well. And they were working for Sassoon’s as well. But that didn’t make any difference to George’s business. I mean, they weren’t his relatives that were out there, it were only Billy’s step brother who was engaged to the daughter.


And so the cloth agent, really would be doing the same job that the Manchester men did that went from the mills.

R - Well the agents went round the manufacturers and asked how much they’d weave this cloth for, they knew, they gave them all the particulars of the yarn and length and everything, and then they’d go to the one who’d do it the cheapest you see?

Yes, that’s it. but they wouldn’t ever buy, for instance Billy, would Billy ever buy weft for somebody.

R- No. They just got commission on the cloth that was woven.

That’s it, yes. Because the Manchester man from the mills …

R - They went to get the orders. Well a cloth agent’s there to give them the orders you see. To give them the prices.

That’s right. And so Billy would go each morning from Barnoldswick?

R – Yes, on the train.

What time. What time was the train he caught?

R - I think they went at eight o’clock, eight or nine. No, perhaps nine. And I think the Royal Exchange opened at ten and they used to get home at half past five.

Yes. And did they, all the time that he was at the Exchange did he always go from Barnoldswick Station?


R – yes, always.

No, the reason I asked that is because I know that in later times I have heard people say that they some of the Manchester men didn’t like the idea of changing at Earby. So they used to go by car to Colne and get the train from there. And I know I have heard that, you know that actually they said that this was wrong because it meant that the Barlick branch line, which they all depended on, lost their trade in the mornings. And so Billy’d go in five days a week to Manchester. So he’d know Manchester well.

R – Yes, and then when the slump came of course George couldn’t afford to keep him going.

When do you reckon that the slump started?

R - Well it started soon after we were married. Soon after we were married, about 1921. And that’s when the slump came. And George, although he’d a lot of money, he spent it you know. He was a spender was George and so was his wife. You see, his wife, they’d always had plenty of money, Bradleys manufacturers, they didn’t know what it was to want anything. And George was a spender. Well Billy wasn’t Billy was steady. He was. But George were ‘Hail fellow and well met’ you know, and a spender. So he couldn’t afford to keep [Billy on] So by Easter, George couldn’t afford to keep Billy on so he had to look for something else.

Aye. And was that decline in the trade that started then, was that the time that Bradleys that were weaving at Bankfield, was that the time that they got into trouble? That was later?

R - Oh no, it was after that. It was after that.

Yes. Now that doesn’t matter, I was just wondering whether it was the same time.

R - Now Kit [Kit is short for Christopher and I think this is the evidence that the Bradley Brother who fell out with the other two, Arthur and Watson, was Christopher Edwin], you know, were George’s father in law. Well there were three brothers in that, in Bradley Brothers there were three brothers. Two of them had the main shares and then there was the younger brother, he lived in Skipton Road. Well, he hadn’t as much money in, he had part in but not like the other two. They didn’t know what to do with the money they'd that much. They'd everything and I used to think it was heaven on earth up at Bradley’s.

And that was all out of cotton.

R - All out of cotton. And when the war came, one of them had to go and it was Kit’s it was Ella’s [son], it was George’s brother in law that had to go [Eddie Bradley] And his father fell out with the other two brothers and got paid out. So he come off best o£ all [when Bradley Brothers banked]

Yes, you’ve told me about that.

R - And the other two they went bankrupt and they’d nothing, not a penny.

And when would that be about? Just roughly.

(15 min)

R - We were married in 1920, I can't remember.

It’s all right, don’t bother. Don’t let it worry you, it’ll come back to you.

R – I’m just trying to think, ‘cause George’s wife died when she was 52. I always think she died of a broken heart.

No, it doesn’t matter, don’t let it worry you. What did Billy do then, Billy has got to look for something else now.


R – Well, I’ll tell you what Billy did. George says why don't you go up into the Lakes and take some cloth with you? You know pieces of cloth. And we had a beautiful oak gramophone and he traded that for a motorbike and he went up in the Lake District with three whole pieces of cloth on. And he sold them all at the first three houses. ‘Cause we had some friends up there and he [George] says “Go to Martindale’s, and, and see what they say.” And Mrs Martindale says “Just what they want up here!” Because you see there were no cars in them days, very few cars you know. Well we used to go, they never used to see anybody only the grocer from Barrow in Furness which was 20 miles away. And people just round about.

Those three pieces of cloth he took, were they grey cloth or finished cloth?

R - Grey cloth.

Gray, cloth, straight out of the mill.

R - Sheeting cloth from Albert Hartley’s.

Aye. What width would that be then Mrs Clark?

Oh, it’d be full width, sheeting width. And he sold them straight away and so he decided to buy a car, and we bought a Ford, a new Ford car on hire purchase. And he used to go up once a month.

Can you remember how much the car was then?

R - I think it was about, just over a hundred pounds. And we’d paid for it in a year you see? And so he bought this car and he went up for a week every month to stay with the Martindales, and they were great friends, they introduced him to people they know and he got a real good round. And then he used to go round the Dales at other times and he got to selling all sorts of things you know, drapery and all that kind of thing. And oh we did that I should think. It put us on our feet and then buses started running. He says “My trade’ll go down here. I’m going to get rid of this lot.” And he went up to Malham, took up everything he had and advertised it and sold everything in a day. And he said “We'll look for a business now.” We went to Southport, we went to Liverpool and Dorothy was a baby and then he went up to Barrow. I didn’t go to Barrow, it was too far to take Dorothy, she was only, she'd perhaps be nine months or something like that. And then George came one day. You see George weren’t making anything you know? You see there was nothing doing, and he said “There’s a lorry and work for sale at Bankfield.” This was Nutter’s originally but they only had 400 looms and it was Maurice Dewhurst. You know Maurice? Up at Springs? Maurice, he was the Secretary and Mr oh…who was it? He came from Bentham. Did you know Annie Fairbanks? Oh well, it was this man from Bentham and they had it. And the lorry was for sale, and the work with it.

And they’d been carting for the manufacturers at Bankfield had they?

(20 min)

R – No. This was their own money, this was their own lorry. And they were just carrying their own cloth.

Oh, who was this, was this Nutter’s?

R- This was a firm and they were there after Nutter left Bankfield. And they hadn’t many looms you see. They hadn’t enough work for this lorry which was a big Leyland, a good lorry, and the garage was at the bottom of Crow Nest Road. You know, going on to the playing field.

Yes, I know what you mean yes.

R - And it was £600 was this. Now I’m telling you this, I don’t want anybody else to know – It’s not on there is it?


No. No, it’s on but I mean, it’s going into the [archive], nobody’ll know about this for a hundred years.

R - And so we paid for the, for the lorry £400 and George says “Get it Billy, I’ll drive it for you. But we’ll have to look for some more work. There isn’t enough work to keep one lorry going.” Because it was a big Leyland but it was a good lorry, it wasn't very old, about two years. And so we said we couldn’t pay for the garage [right away] but we’d pay for it in a year. So they gave us a year to pay for it. And we did but you see we had to look, they had to look for more work. Billy, we often laughed about it, Billy says the first day we went out we came back with one skip on! That’s how we started at haulage and we got to five lorries eventually. And you see, they were well known, and we got some very good firms, we got all Bankfield. We got all Fernbank, there were Ellison’s, Cairns and Lang, Mannock Gill and Hartley Edmondson’s. We got all that for…

They were all at Fernbank.

R - They were all at Fernbank.

What year would this be about Mrs Clark?

R - Well it would be, we were married in 1920. Billy were on the Royal Exchange for only about four or five months and then he was going round [with cloth] four or five years, about 1926 I should say. 1926 or 1927.

1926, that's it aye. And things wouldn’t be good then, not by a long chalk.


R - Oh no, cotton wasn’t good. And we paid for it and then trade came better you see. ‘Cause we got, we did all Clough Mill, you know we did all Slater’s at Clough Mill ‘cause they knew Billy and George you see? And that helped a lot.

Aye well, somebody you can rely on.

R - And then Albert Hartley, all Albert Hartley’s which is Haighton’s now but it wasn’t as big a firm then you know? [1952 M/c Exchange Directory. Two firms are mentioned as being in Crow Nest Mill: Albert Hartley Ltd and M Horsfield and Son Ltd. They have the same representatives on the ‘Change and so were the same firm. The reps were F I Haighton and T Hall.] So we did all the work, we brought the yarn in and took the cloth out. Of all these firms we did everything they had. And then we had Horsfield’s, we’d Windle’s which was at, we called it New Mill, Wellhouse Mill, yes.

Wellhouse. But Horsfields were at Wellhouse as well weren't they?

R – Maurice Horsfield yes. Robinson Brooks, we did all their work, that was at Westfield Mill.

Aye, Robinson Brooks yes.

R – Yes, they did all their work, in and out, all the yarn and all the cloth. And we did part for Widdups and we did part for Bancroft, Nutters. And we had one or two more.

Andy was there … sorry.

R- It’s all right, I’m trying to think of who else we had. Anyway, we got to five lorries eventually.

Yes. Was there anybody else in Barnoldswick doing the same thing then?

R - Oh Wild Brothers, yes Wild Brothers. They started before we did.

Yes, now tell me, where did Wild Brothers start?

R - Cobden Street and it were Wild and Hyde when it started, there were two of them.

Yes. Tell me something, over near Bancroft, in between Bancroft and Gillian's cottages, in that field, there is a concrete flat and there’s a petrol tank underneath there. An old petrol tank, and somebody once told me that Wilds first started over there and whether that’s right or not I don’t know. [This was right, see Jack Platt evidence]

R - Oh well they might have done. All I can remember is them being down here.

Yes well, of course. I mean, you know I’m only interested in what you know. What you know. I was just wondering whether you could ever remember a garage across there.

R – No. I can’t, no.

It doesn’t matter. But it is still there, there is still a little old petrol tank underneath in the well.


R – Yes. Because we lived in Ash Grove when, you know when we started in the haulage business.

In the haulage business, yes.

R – Yes, we didn't come… Well we've just been up here [at Highlands] 45 years. Shirley was seven months old when we came up here. Well, Dorothy was born while Billy was going up in the Lake District because I remember taking her up, we used to go with him you know and stop a week with him at Martindale’s. Oh and they used to love us to go and the daughter lives in Skipton now. They are both dead Mr & Mrs Martindale but the daughter is in Skipton. She comes, they come over quite a lot and she told Dorothy, she says “You know Dorothy, I could do anything for aunty Emma and uncle Billy, they were the highlight of our life when we were children.” Because there were nobody ever went you know, only just neighbours and that. They were half a mile from the nearest bus station when the buses started running. And five miles from Haverthwaite Station.

That’s it, yes. And how long did they go on with the haulage business?

R - Oh till he retired, till he was sixty, well he was 63 when he started being ill and he went to a specialist and he was Mr ?, I forget, at Keighley. He was a nice man, oh he was a nice man. And he says “Well, you know, your heart isn’t good Mr Clark. Can you take things easier?” Billy says “Well yes I could. I could just go down, I’m a haulage contractor. I could just go down and see the men off in the morning.” He says “Well, do that and rest all afternoon.” Well he did that and he was 63 and it was about May, April, and he says “Come again in six months and he went again in six months and he says “Well you’re not any worse Mr Clark but keep on doing it. When will you be 65?” Billy said “I shall be 65 in June.”


What year was that Mrs Clark?

R- 65 in June. Well, he’d have been, how old would he have been? He’d have been eighty… he would have been eighty five this year so it's twenty years since.

(30 min)

Well that’s twenty years ago. 1958.

R - And Kenneth Nutter, you know Kenneth Nutter who was with Gotts, you know, Gott’s Garage now. Well, he was Rupert Nutter’s son was Kenneth Nutter.

I didn't know that, aye.

R- Yes, Kenneth Nutter, and we were very friendly with Rupert and his wife, we had played Bridge with them every Saturday night for years. We would go up to the house one week and down here the next and after his father died he came to Billy and he said “What do you do to get a licence for haulage?” Billy thought it was a bit cheeky of him when we were in haulage. And he says “Oh you can’t get a licence, not unless you can prove you have the work for it” Which you couldn’t. I mean it wasn't like it was when we started. Of course we had the work when we got on but you couldn’t get a licence to start a business unless you had the work for it.

That’s it.

R - So he says I’m going let the cotton go. And he let his cotton go.

This is Billy?

R – Billy, he let the cotton go, he sold part of it, he sold part of his cotton and he did part for Rolls Royce and he did part for a firm at Gargrave and he said I'm going to let me cotton go. And so he sold the cotton, he didn't get a lot for it because you see there wasn’t, trade wasn’t good then, you know. So Kenneth Nutter came. So he says “I’ll ring Kenneth up and tell him that I’m going to sell my business, and [see] if he is interested. He came to see me about it.” And so he rang him up and Kenneth says “I’m very interested, I’ll come up and we’ll have a talk. have a talk.” And he decided there and then he’d have it. And he got it very reasonably. Billy Says “You know you’ll have to look for some more work Kenneth. You’ll have to look for some more work. It isn’t the business that it used to be.” And he had a brother who was a, he had a very good job with Rolls Royce up in Scotland and we had done part work for Rolls Royce up at East Kilbride.


That’s it. what did, what name did that business go under when Billy had it?

R - W A Clark.

Yes. Did they change the name when they got it?

R- Oh yes they would. What did they change it to?


R- Yes, Stockbeck. Well you know, when they got it, our lorry were in quite good condition and he wasn’t [open with us] he never told us that Colin Alderton was in with him. Never told us, we didn't know, he just talked as though it was his. We had

(35 min)

no idea till quite a bit after that.

That’s it. It’s funny is this you know because now you are talking you know. Because of course you know I was on long distance lorries for years. Now you are talking about something that I know something about as well. Those two, they just ruined that business.

R - They spent thousands of pounds on new… but instead of looking, getting some work and looking for work they spent the money on the lorries, buying new lorries and spending money down at the garage and putting the toilet in. Billy never had a toilet you know, he used to go into the mill to the toilet, because he used to carry for you know Albert Hartleys. And they spent money hand over fist and it was all Colin Alderton’s money. ‘Cause his father’s wife told me after, ‘cause you know she was Robinson Brooks’s daughter was Colin Alderton’s father’s second wife. She knew what our business was like because we’d done all their work from starting. And she said to me, “You know Colin trusted Kenneth, he believed everything he said.” I says “Well, we made that business pay.” She says “We know you did but it was Kenneth and Colin trusted him.” And he was a right rotter was Kenneth you know? You know what he did? Ran away you know with Bill Bailey’s daughter.

Aye. And then they got mixed up with racing cars and all didn’t they.

R - Oh yes, And he was a right rotter and his other brother, Jack Nutter, he was just the opposite, oh he was a grand fellow.


And Billy said… Do you know what Billy said to me? He said “If he can get in with his brother and get work, they'd be made up in ten years. They aren't like me, I have had to pay for all my repairs and things. Theirs will get done at a quarter price and if they can only look after that business right they'd be made up in ten years. [Because Colin had the garage] Because they had everything, the petrol and - of course we had a petrol pump but they’d get it cheaper than we got it.

Well funnily enough not necessarily.

R – Well, when they sell it.

No, it's a funny thing is that you know. I mean… I'll tell you something now. Tyres, lubricating oil and fuel, it was always the same, there was what they called, Billy would have known about it, there was what they called ‘fleet rate’. And if you could get on fleet rate it was always an accepted thing up to about 10 years ago that a haulage contractor that was on fleet rate could buy his diesel and his oil and his tyres cheaper than a garage could buy them wholesale. It was a funny thing that.

R - Oh no, I don’t think so. We couldn’t, Billy had to pay for his tyres, he’d get a commission on them…

Yes but you could get a very good discount because I mean, you know, we used to get it in 1958. We were getting it then you know. I mean it was amazing the discounts we used to get. And I know the garages at one time, they raised Cain over this job because, especially lubricating oil, we could buy oil cheaper than a garage could buy it you know, we could get it, I think that’s still right because…

R - Had you a pump for it?

No, you know, lubricating oil because…

R - We had a petrol pump*

Yes, that’s it. But it’s funny is that you know because I never know where Stockbeck suddenly appeared from. And it was always a bit of a mystery. And, at that time I was running into Glasgow regularly. And I was also going into East Kilbride regularly.

(40 min)

R - Oh yes. Well we ..

And I got to know a bit about this haulage firm and I knew enough about them to know that they ware wronguns, they were running wrong.

R - Yes yes. Oh they lost a lot of money did Colin Alderton.

Aye, it’s a pity I didn’t know Billy then. Because I could have told him a thing or two about what was going on up there. I’ll tell you there was all sorts going on with that firm. Because at that time I was doing a lot of work for clearing house In Glasgow. I was doing a lot of work for Sterne’s the refrigeration people. Do you know Sterne’s refrigerators? And I was doing a lot of work for them and that was all out of East Kilbride where the Rolls Royce place is. And it was largely due to the bad service that Stockbeck gave Rolls Royce that they started to carry all their own engines.


R - Oh yes. Before Billy finished he had a contract for three months for carrying engines from East Kilbride to Barlick. And it lasted three years it lasted three years and at the end of that time that was when we sold our business. And Billy said “Now, if you’ll only look after things.” And he had a brother who had a very good job with Rolls Royce, he says “Now if you can get Jack.” But you see they must not have been able to do it. [It must have been Jack Nutter who had the job with Rolls Royce, Kenneth’s brother.]

No. They could have had all that work if they had used their heads, you know? Anyway, that’s Stockbeck. Well, that’s interesting is that because it was always a mystery to me, that firm was always a mystery.

R - Eh I remember Kenneth coming up here and talking as though it were all his money, not a mention of Colin Alderton.

Yes, and Colin ... No. Colin used to live up at Marton then you know? And we were running out of Marton. Because Colin was living at Marton next to David Peacock’s house. And, aye, well that’s, in fact I used to pass the time of day many a time with Colin. But anyway, so that meant that, Billy was carrying for the manufacturers in Barnoldswick from 1926 until 1958 so really he’d be carrying for them right down the decline, he’d see it happening all the way.

R – Yes.

And did he ever say anything about the way things were going in the cotton industry? You know, did he ever…

R - Oh we knew how, how cotton was going. We should have had to give up before then if we hadn’t had Rolls Royce. We kept doing part, we had no contracts only this last contract we had which was for three months. And it lasted three years. Or else we should have given up before then I think.

The thing that interests me is, did Billy ever express any opinions about what was happening in the cotton industry? You know, did he ever, did he have any opinions about what was causing the decline?


(45 min)

R - Well, it was foreign competition, cheap competition you know? That was what it was. Foreign competition, Japan and India you know? We’d gone out to teach them you know and then they took our trade.

Yes, you see one of the things that a lot of people don't realise is that Japan actually overtook us in textile exports before the first world war. And some people have put the date when the decline started at 1914 when the first world war started and that was when the exports to India started to drop off. The peak years for exports to India which was the main market started to drop off in 1914, And so…

R – Yes. I suppose it would because you see George had a marvellous connection with…

yes well there you are, with Sassoon’s yes.

R - Sassoon’s yes.

And, it was the Japanese started to step in in India and that was what did it.

P - Yes, are you cold Stanley? Are you cold?

It’s not all that warm now the sun's gone.

R - No it isn’t because you see I'm sat in the sun.

No you are right.

R - And you haven’t you know, I have a woollen, I have a woollen…

Oh I’ve got me good cotton shirt on.

R - Oh have you?

Aye, woven in Lancashire, it says so at the back of it. And these shirts are a case in point, it was a manufacturer who had these shirts made up about 20 years since. And for some reason he never sold them. And a friend of mine that dresses windows, a young lady who dresses shop windows in Burnley happened to know this fellow, and he was selling these shirts at two pound each

R- Oh well.

And, you know, collar attached.

R – Yes, they'd be good ones.

Oh they’re beautiful cotton.

R- I mean cotton's a terrible price now.

I'll tell you something else and all, the shirt lap goes down the backs of your legs!

R - Not them little short ones.

Not nowadays, not nowadays. Ernie Roberts once said something to me, he said that he remembers a chap saying in about 1930 when things were bad you know. He said if only they’d put another inch on’t Chinamen’s shirt laps, he said we’d be all reight! But, so, a lot of these manufacturing families would start to feel the pinch, in the thirties they’d start to feel the pinch. Now


can you remember which was the first mill, not the first firm but which was the first mill in Barnoldswick to stop weaving?

R- I don’t know.

Well now I’ll just prompt you a little bit. I don’t really know but I have a fair idea. Before the war, who was weaving at Butts, can you remember?

R – Pickles’ for one, before the war, Pickles’ and Horsfields.

Now, there was a fire at Butts wasn’t there at some time. Can you remember anything about that? There was a big fire there.

R- Yes, I can't tell when it was.

It doesn’t matter. Now wait minute, there’d be Butts, Clough was still weaving. So really the first closures in Barlick were probably during the second world war when they concentrated the mills then. You know they, during the second world war there was, Wellhouse was a tobacco warehouse wasn't it. You knew it was a tobacco warehouse?

R - Yes

Bankfield went over to munitions. Now wait a minute, there was another one went over to munitions which was Calf Hall.

R- Calf Hall?

Calf Hall was munitions as well wasn’t it during the second world war?

E - I think so yes, I think it was. Yes, I think it was.

Now who else?

R- I don’t know.

There was the Rover Company weren’t there?

R - They came to Bankfield.

That was Bankfield, the Rover Company wasn’t it? And they also …

R - And their offices were down at Bracewell Hall.

Is that right? I didn’t know that.

R- Yes, their offices were down at Bracewell Hall, yes.

Aye so Bracewell Hall’d be standing then, yes.

R- And then after that it was taken over with Smiths as a restaurant and a dance place you know?

Now. I’ve heard them talking about going dancing at Bracewell.

R- Yes. And they used to have dances every Saturday night, the Ambassadors Dance, it was very popular. And they used to make, it was a restaurant as well and then they used to have boating on the lake. They had swimming pool, we used to go down there swimming.

And when was that?


R – Well, it was after the war.

After the second world war? Aye, I didn't know that.

R- Well, was it after the second world war? After the first it were, when we were in business. Because I remember George Clark picking us up when we were coming home from, you know, on one of our lorries.

That's it, yes.

R- How long is it, how long is it since Billy retired? He was 65. Well, he’d have been 85 now so it’s twenty years since.

Yes, So just after the war it’d be 40 years since.

R- So it would be after the second world war.

That's it, yes. What happened to Bracewell Hall in the finish? Because it’s not there now.

R - Then they must have pulled it down mustn’t they?

Yes, that's it. Aye.

R- I can’t remember. And I was down at Mrs Boothman’s last Saturday you know?

Aye, that’s it, New House Farm, Bracewell.

R- She used to live here you know, [Heather Leigh, Tant and her moved there from New House Farm] and she lives by the church now.

Oh, has she moved back down there? [To Bracewell]

R – Yes, she’s in that house up to the farm.

Oh Anthony’ll be dead now is he? Aye, that’s it.[Anthony Boothman, always called ‘Tant’, used to farm New House at Bracewell.]

R – Yes, Billy’s father and mother were very friendly with Boothmans when they lived at … A great big farm it was, I can’t think, Coulthurst lives there now and it’s a beautiful house.

Stainton Coates*

R - Stainton Hall, Stainton Hall yes.

Stainton Hall was it he had ?

R - Either Stainton Hall or Stainton Coates.

Stainton Coates is where the Coulthursts live.

R- yes. And it’s a very big house.

Yes, that’s it.

R – And Billy’s father used to have a shoot there. And he was very friendly with the Boothman's family. And I was talking to Mr and Mrs Boothman before Anthony died, and I said “I have a photograph of Billy's mother taken with all your family.” They said they’d like to see it and I said they could as long as I got it back. This is when Anthony was living, and she was a right little stout woman was Billy’s mother, just like George, George was little and plump. And she’d evidently gone with Mr Clark you see and he used to go shooting there. Andy so I let him have it I says “But I’d like it back Mr Boothman but I’ve never got it back and I would have liked it back because Billy's mother’s on it and there's all the family. There were four sons weren’t there?

Well there would be.

R - One was a butcher and, and oh Billy used to, and we went one Sunday evening. We went with George’s brother in law.

SCG/25 January 2003
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