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Everything posted by Alan

  1. Agreed, Saints had the lucky breaks, and that was the main difference between them
  2. I'd rather that they saved the market hall that predated that monstrosity
  3. Yes, that prop was irritating me too
  4. Thanks Phyll. It seems to have shrunk to the size of three or four football piches
  5. What a pleasure to watch Saints beat Salford on SKY last night. I even enjoyed watching Leigh nearly beat Wiggin. I've tried watching rugby union but it's such a tedious spectator sport, I end up reading the previous day's papers instead. And as for soccer - aka wendyball - I just want to put a brick through the TV screen at some of the blatant attempts at penalty-milking
  6. In the 1950s we used to cycle out to Holliday Moss through Rainford to indulge in a boyhood passion of birdwatching. It was a magical place, full of all kinds of wildlife and coppices of birch trees and ponds full of newts and frogs etc. Does it still exist?
  7. Just been watching a fascinating short feature on BBC about the restoration of an area in Northumberland known as the Border Mires. Basically scores of acres of woodland are being cut down to enable the restoration of ancient peat beds, which are apparently far better at carbon storage than trees.. The programme brought to mind the numerous peat bogs in and around St Helens of my youth. Rainford, Sutton, Kings and Holliday Moss immediately came to mind. There were many others too. Question. Do they still exist? If so, are they protected?
  8. When I was a child, a common allegation was that one of the house's owner/occupier's had put their housemaid "in the family way".
  9. I hope it's a Listed Building and has therefore some degree of protection. Viccy Park Museum, along with the surrounding park, featured large in my childhood
  10. Mens public urinals around the older parts of St Helens
  11. Jumble (or rummage) sales. Usually held in church halls in aid of scouts etc. I have clear memories of being taken to one in St Mary's church in Keswick Road in the 1940s. Rows of trestle tables covered in old clothes, curtains etc with scores of women thumbing through the stuff
  12. His song and dance act when he arrived at Nelson's Dockyard in Antigua really made my day
  13. Is Salford Chairman John Wilkinson still living? Two other Board members whose names suddenly came to me are John Oakes and Graham Mc Carty. Also Les Bettinson
  14. As opposed to the earlier quotation which was from my book on St Helens published 5 or 6 years ago, the following reference to the smells of St Helens is from a book that I've yet to get published: (Strange thing about the bus journey (No. 6 Trolley bus to St Helens Junction) is that I can still vividly remember the smells that permeated the cigarette smoke-laden air on the upper deck. In fact I’m sure that in those days you could navigate the route by smell alone. As the bus made its way up Duke Street you got the warm comforting smell of Bowley’s bakery on your right closely followed by the cooked meat smell of Whittle’s pie shop on the left. When you turned into Baldwin Street you caught the herbal smell of Beecham’s Pill factory off to your right in Westfield Street. Progressing along Church Street, you got the smell of hops from Greenhall and Whitley brewery to your left. Next up was the more unpleasant smell of coal gas and tar from the Gas Works at Peasley Cross and the producer-gas from the UGB works behind it. Then as you passed the two hospitals, you got the traditional hospital whiff of disinfectant and chloroform. The real winner was however after you’d turned left into Robins Lane when you hit the unspeakable rotten egg smell of the Sidac Works. If you survived that pong which seemed to originate from a small multi-coloured pool fed by an equally multi-coloured stream that in my child’s mind’s eye came from the bowels of the factory, you were almost home and dry with just the welcoming smells of Royle’s Bakery awaiting as you closed in on your destination. If you were lucky, the destination would be marked by the hot oil and smoke smell of a steam-engine at the Junction Station.)
  15. Given the industries of the town, it’s hardly surprising that an abiding memory of those days is of an assortment of smells, good and bad. I’ll try to strike a fair balance. Some of the smells we lived with still come to mind. Probably the worst of these was the hydrogen sulphide (rotten eggs) stench from the Sidac cellophane factory that we passed on the bus on the way to our paternal grand parents in Sutton. Just as the bus approached Sutton, on the left-hand side, was a sort of small multi-coloured lagoon with an equally multi-hued stream flowing into it. Heaven alone knows what chemicals it contained but, boy, did it stink! Equally nauseous pongs came from the gasworks and all the Producer Gas plants that fuelled the glass factories. There was one stream that ran through Parr that was little more than an open sewer and was fondly known as The Stinking Brook. Other less offensive smells that were an everyday part of life in St Helens were the smell of hops and malted barley from the Greenall and Whitley Brewery in Hall Street, the sweet herbal cinnamon smell from Beecham’s pharmaceutical works near the town-centre and the smell of yeast from a yeast wholesaler in Dentons Green Lane. I can clearly remember a strong smell of mothballs or naphtha at the northwest end of St Helens. I think it came from the newly developing Kirkby Industrial Estate but I’m unable to pinpoint its original source Another smell that stays in my memory is the smell of coffee being ground and smoked bacon at Horace Cole’s up-market grocery store almost next door to Mrs McCulley’s sweetshop at the Lingholme Corner. (He later opened another in Greenfield Road that his new wife managed). A very distinctive smell of that era was in the three main hospitals; the Providence behind the Theatre Royal, Whiston near Rainhill and the St Helens Hospital on Peasley Cross Lane. No matter when you visited or which area or ward you entered, they were all defined by the pervasively sweet smell of chloroform. Then there was the “Sallywhite” bleach mixing works in Albion Street close to Boundary Road. The precise location escapes me but the strong acrid smell of the chlorine bleach lingers on in my mind. The nicest smells from childhood include the privet blossom on the overgrown bushes in Queens Recreation Park, lilac blossom from gardens in Dentons Green Lane and the Lily of the Valley and Dorothy Perkins roses in Grandma Grundy’s back yard. And of course there were also the enticing smells from the town’s many bakeries, including notably for us, Skellands at the bottom of Boundary Road and Bowleys just around the corner in Duke Street.
  16. The raft on Carr Mill Dam was raising the sluice valve to replace it. Apparently by doing it this way they will not have to drain the dam
  17. When did the building become commonly known as The Mansion House? It was always known as Victoria (Vicky) Park Museum when I lived in St Helens
  18. Why are they bothering?
  19. Beats the smell of old slurry we get most winter days here as the neighbouring farms muck-spead their fields
  20. Another Phoenix if the mythology is correct
  21. I donated £20. Just read that he's raised over a million quid. Well done Kevin Rob Burrow: Kevin Sinfield raises £1m-plus in marathon challenge for MND research - BBC Sport WWW.BBC.CO.UK Kevin Sinfield raises more than £1m after he runs seven marathons in seven days in support of Rob Burrow, who has Motor Neurone Disease.
  22. Kevin Sinfield's 7 marathons in 7 days in aid of research into motor neurone disease and in suport of a victim of the disease - Leeds's legendary No. 7 Rob Burrows - has certainly hit the BBC TV News headlines today with some heart-rending interviews. A tragic story with an heroic angle and great publicity for our game Rugby legend to run seven marathons in seven days WWW.BBC.CO.UK Leeds Rhinos' Kevin Sinfield is embarking on the challenge to raise awareness for Rob Burrow and MND.
  23. HORT, do you have any photos of Pilks City Rd Silvering Shop?
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