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I was born in Laburnum Grove in 1945 and remember fondly my wonderful childhood in The Groves. Car free, so we would play in the street. Masons removals in Frederick Grove gave the kids a huge tow rope and we used it for skipping; girls and boys all ages and sometimes the mums and dads. We would play ollies, top and whip, hopscotch, hide and seek. At the back of the town hall was the Corpy yard and stables for the horses that pulled the carts to collect the rubbish. Hicks' bakery smell - oh delicious: my dad drove the first electric van for them. Ellis's dairy in Chestnut Grove on the corner: my uncle was the cow man and my aunt the dairy maid, the fresh milk was delicious. Alcloths shop on the corner of Frederick Grove and Chestnut Grove: tiny little shop filled with everything.

We had trips out on a charabang to see the lights at Blackpool and to Southport and Chester Zoo. Flasks of tea for the mums and dads, bottles of water for us kids and packs of paste sandwiches and if we were very lucky a Penguin biscuit. A gang of us would go into Victoria Park and nick apples from the posh houses - oh we got belly ache from them. Before the Catholic school was built in Chestnut Grove it was a bombed site called The Wassey and we would have big bonfires on 5th November The dads would build the fire and look after it, and the mums would do potatoes and chestnuts and then the fireworks.

The shops on the High Street - Mr Watterson's chemist, he made the best mixtures for anything, fabulous coloured bottles in the window. Lloyds paper shop, I used to wait outside for the Echo to be delivered every night before my dad came home. The police station, I can remember my friends dad taking kittens in there to be put to sleep in an oven - oh horrid.

Kellitts store on the corner of Jack Lowe's snicket, you could buy 2 ounces of butter and they would cut it then pat it. I always wanted to do that as I got older. Chandlers was next door, and you could buy a pennyworth of soap if you took a bottle and your mum was going to do the cleaning. Next was Chester's butchers a shop with two doors, then Toppings fruit and veg, then Home James Coaches and then the Lamb hotel. I remember Mrs Homes chip shop next to the Town Hall.

I went to Holy Trinity school in Prince Alfred Road. The headteacher was Miss Garton. I just loved her and I was a pet, she would have me in her office knitting dishcloths. We had a school orchestra and I was the conductor, we had the May processions and would all ride on the back of lorries that had to be cleaned by our mums. We would start at school and then up the High Street, along Church Road to Holy Trinity church for a service, and then back to school. Christmas parties at school, when we had to take a plate, dish and spoon and were able to wear our best clothes.

It was sad when we had to leave there to go to our new schools. Friendships broke up and new friends were made. I went on to Olive Mount whilst others went onto grammar schools. I left Liverpool 40 years ago and have never regretted the moves around the country. However, after finding this web site, for the first time in 40 years I am homesick. Well done to those that have made this possible.

(née Wright)

July 2007

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Page created by MRC 19 October 2007