Marie Phipps (b.1918)

It was much about the same – except for the extra buildings (Burbage). We used to come all in the fields and that, we used to go right down to the Soar brook and play – we used to play for hours down there. Used to sit with tramps under the bridge and they wouldn’t hurt you. If they’d got their sandwiches with them they’d open the paper and share them with us. Half past four they’d say, ‘Now then boys and girls come on, your mams’ll be looking for you, and don’t stop on the way.’ We were off all day – our mothers had no fear .

We had to do as we were told, you daren’t cheek my dad neither but my mum were more so than my dad. I was always suffering from nerve trouble and that. They need to give us all sorts, Fennings powders, fever powder…every morning we used to have brimstone and treacle – for your blood. It weren’t very nice but they used to give it to you, and they used to make us stinging nettle tea…we used to take it as pop.

Up by the station, you know where the new bridge is now there used to be a old bridge, used to go up the steps to it. There was a lot of stone steps up one side and down the other end. Youngsters used to go down there in their courting days. We used to play down there haymaking time, when they used to make the hay and that, we used to have hours on it. Did we help? We hindered! They’d stack it up and we used to go round and chuck it all about and they used to run after us and clout our ear holes if they got hold of us. We used to have some fun.

Gladys Mansfield

Lived in Castle Street at the outdoor beer licence. They had got a little room at the back called a cosy room – it was only a small room – and some of the old ladies used to go in there for a little drink but it wasn’t classed as a pub exactly, you know. It’s still there now, it’s a butcher’s shop in Castle Street, you walk right through to the other end, to the top of the hill…down that alleyway and the police station used to be straight opposite then.

When I was young it was church, church dances and G.F.S. – Girl’s Friendly Society – my husband were in the Men’s Fellowship.


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