The town where I grew up…

Hard one this…”give me a child until he’s 7″…because until then I lived in a suburb of Manchester called Droylsden…I remember the house, a small 3 bedroomed semi…the garden seemed huge!…it wasn’t! My very very very best friend lived at the bottom of the garden, just through the privets…she’s a well known wine critic now, Kathryn McWhirter. God I loved her! The area we knew was very small…our gardens, the square, the main road which lead to some shops…the other way me & my mum used to walk to a field in which was a goat, thrills! Well it was then! Down another road lead to the war memorial & a small park. I have a photo somewhere of me trying to do a forward role!

My world fell apart when Kathryn & her mum & dad moved to Bakewell in Derbyshire…Oh how I missed her! Sometime after this, on 5th Sept 1960 in fact, we also moved…to a new estate on the outskirts of Manchester called Middleton. Hold on, to be precise, Alkrington, Middleton…the posh bit! My Grandma & Granddad moved in with us, life REALLY changed! Ah, back to Middleton. I was enrolled at St. Peter’s R.C Primary School, started in junior 1 should have been top infants! I slowly grew to love Middleton. I think it was my age, I was old enough to wander, well you could way back then! I soon got to know my immediate area, then the fields, then Alky Woods…the world seemed SO big!

By the time I was 14 warm, close little town was wearing off me. My Gran had passed away, sad to say I didn’t miss her, my sister who has Down Syndrome was beginning to “bug” me. The town was changed into AN ARNDALE…it lost it’s character.

I planned my escape! At 18 I went to college in Rugby, I loved it! It wasn’t as clean or as well to do as Middleton, but I was free to be me!!!

Forward 1973…the boy I loved left me, I finished my course, my dad got cancer……I came home, never wanted to leave the Midlands, met & married a young man who came to work for my dad whilst he was in hospital…I had my first daughter in Aug 1974, my dad died in June 1975. Guess where I live now?! Yup, Middleton! We have been here since 1977. My two daughters have been brought up & gone to school here, we’ve owned a butcher’s, I taught for over 25 yrs in the town, 20 in the same one. My husband is still my husband, our eldest still lives with us, the youngest not far away in Blackley with her fiance. We live in an area of Middleton known as Boarshaw…I like it!

If I had the money I’d move tomorrow to Lytham St. Anne’s…but I can’t & wont ever be able to, so, Middleton it is!

I didn’t really answer did I? But it felt good writing it all down!!!

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