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A life in Sheffield in the 50’s (Part 1)

(10 Posts)
DerekY Mon 08-Aug-16 18:41:04

I was born in the Upperthorpe area of Sheffield in 1949 near the back of the Royal Infirmary Hospital in September. My father had been a painter and decorator but he had just started as a tram driver for Sheffield Corporation and my mother went to work at Leppington’s Cutlery Company in the office. At that time we lived on Cross Addy Street in a terrace house shared with my mother’s grandmother. The houses at the end of the road in Addy Street were back to back 3 story terrace house(which were also in our yard also although they were not back to back houses. Hence there was a great deal of people in a confined area.
Our kitchen which we tended to live in faces three garages. We thought that the owner of the corner shop was well off because he garaged his car in it. One of the later owners was a chap who was always on the last minute push to go anywhere. Usually when he reversed the car out of the garage he always had a puncture and had to continually pump the tyre up and it was not always the same one. This went on for ages he would never get the punctures repaired. The toilets were all outsides in one long block as the yard we were in had 10 houses along with the garages and two workshops. The owners of the corner shop put a lock on the toilet door along with others as it wasn’t the first time they had gone to the toilet and found a stranger sat there. We were not proud in those days you’re now asked to recycle paper but then it was done automatically. The “Star and Daily Mirror” were always ripped into quarters to use after you had been to the loo. You were rich if you could afford toilet paper such as Izal which was as bad as using the papers.
The second garage was owned by Harold smashing chapped he owned I think a couple of houses the corner shop and chippy in the yard. When I was younger he and his wife Rose ran the Fish and Chip shop and became firm friends with my mom and dad as they got older.
The 3rd Garage was rented by a chap who lived out of the yard. Although at that time cars were a pretty rare commodity he owned a three wheeler Bond. What made him noticeable was that he could not drive it in as the garage was long and narrow with the door on the side. Therefore because the three wheeler had no reverse he gear on to get it in and out of the garage by either pushing it in or pulling it out. This was by holding the emblem on the bonnet to guide it.

Willow500 Tue 09-Aug-16 13:05:37

My aunt moved to Sheffield after the war which was where her husband came from with my cousin who was a small boy. They moved to a prefab in Totley and lived there for many years. I loved visiting although hated the journey which in those days seemed to take all day as there were no motorways. My cousin married and lived in a terraced house in Woodseats similar to the one you describe - the toilet was outside too although not shared with other houses by then which would be the late 50's. I was once left to babysit their 2 small girls (I was only about 8 myself) and locked myself out going to the loo - a neighbour had to get a ladder and get in the back bedroom window to let me in. That cousin now 81 still lives in Sheffield with his wife and their family live nearby. Still like Sheffield and live not that far away these days.

DerekY Tue 09-Aug-16 13:30:20

A journey by Tram across the city to Millhouses Park was a good half day out.

wot Tue 09-Aug-16 13:38:10

Very interesting reading these posts.

Willow500 Tue 09-Aug-16 17:50:43

Oh yes Millhouses Park - I'd forgotten about that. We had a car so I was taken there to play if we visited. I can still remember to this day constantly asking my dad if we were nearly at the 'lino shop'? I knew once we got to the corner that shop was on we were not far from my aunts. Happy days.

Kateykrunch Tue 09-Aug-16 18:19:30

If you are interested in more Sheffield, then log on to Sheffield Forum it is a fab read, interesting, brings back memories and some of the posters on there have great sense of humour.

MargaretX Tue 09-Aug-16 19:10:04

Very interesting. I lived the first 30 years of mylife in Sheffield and traveled across town by bus and tram to Abbeydale Grammar school in the 50s which took an hour so don't understsnd how it took you half a day to Millhouses park.

I lived at Southey Green , near Longley Psrk which looks to me as if it is a Golf course now. When I finally got my own bed-sit I lived on Ranmoor Road so got to know how the other half lives. I worked as a steel analyst after leaving school

I live in Germany now.

Greyduster Wed 10-Aug-16 17:12:45

I was born and brought up in Sheffield in a tiny terraced house in industrial Heeley in the 1950's. As I said somewhere else on here, my children were appalled that we lived in such awful conditions but I explained to them that they weren't that awful. We were clean, ate well, and had community. We played in the streets and were safe. Everyone knew everyone else's children and looked out for them. We had wonderful local parks - Meersbrook and Graves within walking distance and Endcliffe and Millhouses a short bus ride away. The leafy enclaves of Endcliffe and Millhouses were a different world to us of large houses and gardens. We didn't have a garden. But the parks and woods were for everyone and are still a joy. A really special treat was to be taken on a bus for a day out in the Peak District; Fox House, Padley Gorge, Castleton. Bilberry picking on Totley Moss! My DD and her partner and my grandson now live in Millhouses, and GS now plays in the park. I moved away when I was 17 but when DH retired from the Army, we bought our first house at Norton. We now live on the South Eastern edge of the city and it is lovely. We have travelled all over the world, but this has always been home. It is now, of course, a much cleaner city than it was when I was a child. The rivers we played in, that we little better than sewers, are now pristine, with trout, grayling and even salmon.

DerekY Thu 11-Aug-16 17:23:28

Did you ever go to the paddling pools at Rivelin it was packed on a sunny day. Also not forgetting Millhouses Park

Greyduster Thu 11-Aug-16 18:00:07

The splash pool at Rivelin is still packed on a sunny day - GS was there last week. The only paddling I do there now is wading in the upper reaches of the river fishing for brown trout!🎣. Where the paddling pools were in Millhouses park is now a new fish pass to allow brown trout to migrate to the lower stretches of the Sheaf. When I was a child there were brown things floating in the river, but they definitely weren't trout shock! The old lido swimming pool at Millhouses was good - there was talk of building another but I don't think they could justify the cost.