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susie123 28-10-2011 14:57

My early life in Accy 1946-68
Having been confined to bed for a bit, passed the time reading some of the threads on this site and thought it was about time to make a contribution.

I grew up in the 50s and 60s and lived at various times in Owen Street, Queens Road and Whalley Road. My earliest memory is of the Festival of Britain procession on Queens Road so that would have been 1951. My grandad had a stall on the fish market, a family business since the late 1800s, and I remember going down town with my cousin on Good Friday and taking him his lunch in a basket. That was when the fish market was still in a shed.

It's always struck me, looking back, how many small shops there were in the area where I lived. Starting at the Whalley Road end of Owen Street there was the off licence at the top of Milnshaw Lane (still there) and Thornber's chemists on the corner of Knowlmere Street. My second cousin worked there, very long hours, and I used to go behind the counter into the pharmacy area where they had all the little drawers and bottles on shelves. There were also some rooms behind the shop, in one of which was a fireplace with a real fire also a gas ring presumably to boil a kettle. That shop became Everitts supermarket. Ernie Everitt used to sell fruit and veg from an open sided van round that area before that.

Going along Owen Street, on the western corner with Haywood Road was Gregson's, grocers, pies and ?bread. I remember taking a jug there to get gravy. Next block along Owen Street, north side was Sagar's cake shop - wimberry pies oozing with juice, such a local thing, haven't seen one for years. Opposite was Mr Nicklin's, newsagent and sweets, no shop front, just a converted front room. Going up Haywood Road, on the west side about halfway to the hospital was Mr Chaffer's bakers, and opposite was Leighton's greengrocers and Thistlethwaite butchers. On the northeast corner of Haywood Road and Garden Street was a Co op though I don't know what it sold and I seem to remember it closing down.

On the next street Aitken Street about halfway up from Owen Street on the west side was Mrs Hogggarth's, grocer, again just a converted front room, and opposite was Miss Clarkson's sweetshop. Then on Marlborough Road north of Queens Road in the first block on the west side was Susie's chippy, just a range in her front room. Susie was a big blonde woman. I've just looked on Google maps and there is a Sue's chippy marked in the same spot! The last two shops I remember were Cameron's baker on the corner of Lime Road and Marlborough Road and a greengrocer next to it. Then another chippy on the corner of York Street opposite Mary Mag’sschool, still there, used to take a basin and get a mixture, chips and mushy peas. This is making me hungry! And I always remember the steamy smell of the Dot Laundry on back Owen Street by the railway embankment.

This seems to me quite a lot of shops, especially bakers, in a fairly small area. Were other areas of town similarly well serviced?

My first school was Central Prep aka Miss Caulfields – she lived a few doors along from us in Owen Street and had taught my dad when he was a lad. When I first went around 1950 the school was in the Oak Street Congregational Church buildings, then it moved to Hargreaves Street behind New Jerusalem Church. I used to go home for lunch which meant trekking from one end of town to the other in the middle of the day as well as at the beginning and end. Although several of us did it in a group I doubt it would be allowed now without supervision! I then went to the High School 1957-64 under Miss Horne's regime and remember all the teachers mentioned on the High School thread, mostly with affection.

I used to go to the Arcs on Knowlmere Street on a Saturday (that offy on Milnshaw Lane came in very handy for illicit drinking!) On Fridays it was Whalley Road Congregational Youth Club - we lived opposite it at the time. I remember getting ready to go there one Friday when we heard the news of JFK's assassination. I also remember going in a coach to the Cavern in Liverpool one afternoon to see a group from Accrington. Having checked the 60s group thread I guess that must have been the Scorchers. I also went to the Majestic ballroom (Con club) on occasion, used to love Lionel Morton and the Four Pennies, also saw the Merseybeats there. Also went to the Meccas at Blackburn and Burnley where I saw Freddie and the Dreamers. And I used to go to the folk club at the Stanley Supporters Club where they used to have some really big names. I still like folk music today and prefer to listen to those acts than any of the modern ones.

Looking back at all this I wonder how I had time to do any school work but I did get some A levels and in1964 went to college in the great metropolis of Preston leaving most of this heady social life behind. Then in 1968 I left Accy for good and have lived in all sorts of places since, from North Carolina to Morecambe, where I am now. I come back for the odd visit but to me the town ain't what it was and it makes me sad.

Sorry for rambling on but maybe some of this has stirred other folks' memories. I look forward to finding out.

All the best to whoever reads this


garinda 28-10-2011 15:38

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
An interesting read.

Thank you.


flashy 28-10-2011 15:50

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
How lovely, welcome to Accyweb, enjoy

Michael1954 28-10-2011 16:40

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
An excellent post!

jaysay 28-10-2011 17:39

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
Very very interesting

TubbyLes 28-10-2011 18:43

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
How come women always remember the shops.I lived on t'other side o't tracks in William St.,and all I remember are steam trains.

Retlaw 28-10-2011 18:45

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
So you were one of the noisy little oiks, that used to run up, and down in the school yard shouting, and screaming, throwing things over the wall into our back yard. I lived in Hargreaves St, next to the school.:tongueout


jaysay 28-10-2011 19:01

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68

Originally Posted by Retlaw (Post 943075)
So you were one of the noisy little oiks, that used to run up, and down in the school yard shouting, and screaming, throwing things over the wall into our back yard. I lived in Hargreaves St, next to the school.:tongueout


No Retlaw that would have been his sister:D

Bob Dobson 28-10-2011 19:49

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
Susie. I was enjoying your walk around the streets of my young days, even though you missed out Booth's baker's shop near the Iron Bridge. I felt sure you were going to be a St John'ser. You are a few years younger than me, but those five years didn't seem to have made a deal of difference in the town of our early years. Recently I met Leonora Leighton whose dad kept the shop you mentioned. Ken Sagar was probably my very first school mate.Not only that, but I got a whiff of the trains Les mentioned - great.

violet 28-10-2011 19:51

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
i also lived on owen st 1960/1970 i also remember most of these shops lived across the rd from miss caufield what was then called the poor side knowmere st with cliff & elenor 5 bob an hr private lesson with a guy called donald knight good days good fun & yes i had a couple of babychams unknown to my mum & dad violet

susie123 28-10-2011 20:38

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
Hello everyone and thanks for the warm welcome, glad you find my memories interesting. Bob, I thought there was a shop I'd missed, just about where you placed Booth's, yet another baker, but couldn't recall it. All the others I could picture vividly, and I recall the name Leonora Leighton, quite exotic sounding in those days.

TubbyLes, the reason I remember the shops is that I ran errands to most of them! And I do remember the trains, standing on the Iron Bridge waiting to be enveloped in a cloud of steam as one passed underneath.

I've also been reading the old thread about the deck which brought back more memories. Someone asked about McKno's tailors on Blackburn Road. My family is related to the McKno family in some way, not sure how, but my great aunt trained there as a tailoress before WWI. I have a photo of her with the other apprentices.

As for the deck, I have arranged to meet many boyfriends there in my time, and yes there were railings in those days, on the corner of Broadway in front of the Town Hall. Also spent many an hour in the Blue Dahlia over a frothy coffee in glass cups and saucers. That was before I used to go in pubs, later when I did I remember the Blockade at the bottom of Edgar Street and the Derby.

Didn't go in the Melbo cafe though I've stared at it often enough. It was on Melbourne Steet opposite the Manchester bus stop which I used to stand at many times as we used to go to Manchester on Saturdays quite a lot. Finally the Astronaut pub on Union Street, didn't go in there myself as a rule but my parents organised my 21s tbirthday party there. That would have been in 1967 by which time I wasa student in Preston and only coming home at weekends.

littlepom 28-10-2011 21:37

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
Thanks for the memories. The deck, Knowlmere Street, mine was cherryB in the phone box on Knowlemere Street. Couldn't dare go to a pub as well as being underage my grandma had the Globe on Blackbutn Road. My dad used to have the garage in Edgar Street opposite the Princess and Empire.
I also knew Lenora Leighton, they were the only people that I knew with a telly and went to their place to watch the Coronation. Will have to talk to Bob later.
Oh some lovely memories came up. Spent hours in the Melbo drinking Vimto.
Thanks Susie.

Retlaw 28-10-2011 22:05

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68

Originally Posted by jaysay (Post 943084)
No Retlaw that would have been his sister:D

Sirri Iriot. What the eck are ti on abeawt. :D:D


cashman 28-10-2011 22:51

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
Booths bakers susie, the daughter Pauline was in my class at St.Johns n still lives local, her younger brother David i think lives oer Anglesey, twas a very interesting post n glad yer feelin better.;):)

JCB 29-10-2011 09:56

Re: My early life in Accy 1946-68
Hello and Welcome Susie .

That was an interesting account of your area in your younger days .

As to your question , certainly my area was well served by small businesses . I think most of the town was in those days .

Violet mentions a Miss Caulfield . Does anyone know if she had anything to do with dancing classes ? I recall that my cousin , as a schoolgirl , went for dancing lessons , and the name Miss Caulfield rings a bell . We used to go to concerts which the dancing school put on , possibly somewhere near the New Jerusalem church off Sandy Lane .

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