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Growing up in New Brighton

from Anon

Floral Pavilion - New Brighton

Source

Floral Pavilion

I grew up in New Brighton between 1945 and 1964 when I was 19. To the person who asked about the convent, it was Maris Stella convent and I went there for my first year of school, before transferring to Vaughan Road School (and what a hellhole that was!) I was fascinated to read all the comments. I had completely forgotten about the illuminated animals in Vale Park, as well as the floral clock. My sister and I went to Nesta Bellis Dancing School for seven years and every year we were in a concert at the Floral Pavilion. Those were fantastic times! I married a boy from Ormiston Road (we lived on Dudley Road, just up from the Hotel Vic) and we moved to Ottawa, Canada.

 

I have been back home a few times since then. Five years ago I took my oldest son to see the flat we had grown up in. That felt very strange. My sister and I used to go to the Kraal all the time. We loved the all nighters! We also used to see the groups at the Tower Ballroom as well as going to the Cavern and the other Liverpool hotspots. I worked for one year at the Gordon Smith Institute for Seamen on Paradise Street in Liverpool and one day a German frigate called the Scharnhorst sailed in - with hundreds of young German sailors aboard! It was a seventeen year old girl's dream! I brought one of them home to meet my family, and show him New Brighton.

 

When I emigrated to Canada we sailed on the Empress of England from Liverpool to Montreal and I remember standing on the deck watching New Brighton slip away. I was excited but also very sad. However it seems as if we lived there during the "good old days", and that things started to deteriorate soon after we left. Thanks for the site and for the memories!

 

Many thanks for your memories

 

The Inviting Shore: Social History of New Brighton: 1830-1939
More Memories from New Brighton

I would also like to say that the person who said Vaughan Road School was a "Hell Hole" went to a different school than I did! I was there from 1959 to 1965 and then went to Withensfield school in Manor Road from 1965 to 1969 when I left at age 15 to start work. Summer holidays consisted of going to the Tower and spending a day there or going to the sand hills, Red Noses, New Brighton baths, Bidston Hill for the day, we would go out in the morning and be back for tea [and we survived without mobile phones]. Going to Liverpool was an adventure when I was small as we would go on the ferry and feed the sea gulls and then come back to New Brighton on the train. I also remember the joke shop by the Tower [around Egerton Street ??] I remember the winter of 1963 and ice flows on the Mersey and a couple of us going from school trying to jump on them as they flowed past, we never did and I suppose just as well as we would of been swept away. I remember the Tower burning down and my dad meeting me when I finished my paper round to go down and watch it burn [worked in Warburton's paper shop form age 13 to 15] My sister and myself were extras in the film "I Thank A Fool" I got hold of a copy few weeks back and found us both on it. I moved to Cumbria in the mid 80's but still go back to New Brighton now and then, its changed a lot since I left and not all for the better But a lot of good memories of growing up in New Brighton during the 60s Dave

I too lived in New Brighton as a kid in the sixties. Here's some quick memories: When I went to the fort for the first time there was an exhibition of Nazi war crimes: ovens, Nuremberg executioners with ropes around their necks, except for GŲring, etc. I remember the horror to this day. I still don't know why young kids were allowed in to see it. I remember the shooting of "I Thank Fool" very well. Lots of free sandwiches. I've never checked out the film to see if I'm in it. Some friends and I snook in to form part of the crowd. We were in about three takes but got tired of doing the same thing over and over again, so we looked for adventure elsewhere. I imagine that we did not even get as far as the cutting room floor. But I might recognise a few faces. I was already fond of Susan Hayward. When I was 8 I saw "I Want to Live" in Manhattan on a Saturday morning, because there was no restrictions for children. When I moved to New Brighton less than a year later they showed the same film, but I couldn't go: it was for over 16's. Puritan Britain. So it was off to the ABC in Liscard with minors on Saturday morning. Other stuff: Ear aches in the New Brighton swimming pool. Beatles and Kinks concerts in The Tower. Working on the bingo and the rifles. Successfully banging the slot machines for pennies. Anon

I was born in 1956 and lived in New Brighton until I moved away due to my dad's job in 1969 aged 13. My dad worked in Liverpool and my grandad was a captain on the Wallasey ferries. I have been back a few times as my friend's parents still live near Vale Park. I lived in Victoria Road - opposite the railway station and remember steam trains shunting wagons there. My schools were a Montessori near Mount Road, Mount Road Infant, Vaughan Road Junior then Wallasey Grammar in the first year that the new one opened. I remember summer holidays on the beach, playing sandcastles, swimming in the sea and having picnics. My dad always maintained that the New Brighton sands disappeared as a result of the Seaforth Container Port being built in Liverpool. He said that it affected the current of the Mersey and it dumped all the sand into the Mersey - making dredging more difficult. As I got a bit older I'd have a pass for the swimming baths and go to New Brighton, Guinea Gap in Seacombe and also Derby Pool (which was always freezing even in summer). I used to walk back home with a friend from Guinea Gap baths to home in New Brighton. We must've been aged 11-13 and I doubt kids would be allowed to do that these days. We used to walk as we could use the bus fare to buy some sweets or have a go on a ride at the fair. Going down to the bottom of Victoria Road was quite an adventure, with all the gift shops, arcades and lots of people. I remember a joke shop somewhere behind 'Vicky Road' towards the old Tower. Also a superb fish & chip shop in the days when the food really was wrapped in the Wallasey News or the Liverpool Echo. Am sure it tasted better! I recall going down to the prom to watch the Empress of Canada and other Canadian Pacific liners come in. Also remember watching in awe when the Royal Navy came in too! Used to see submarines and other naval craft come in to go to Cammell Lairds. I used to go and play on the Red Noses on the prom and loved to watch the motorbike racing on the prom too. I recall the races were usually a week or two before the TT on the Isle of Man. Me and some friends took great advantage of the steep roads in New Brighton e.g. Portland Street, to go hurtling down them on home-made skateboards. The trick was to go as fast as you could then jump off them - kicking them backwards before you go to the main road. When I went back 'home' in the mid-late 70's it all looked very sad and run-down. I'm delighted to see that it's on the up again. Many things have gone and much has changed - but it's still a great place! Anon

Thanks for another great set of memories

 

Comments

I went to Vaughan Road in the 60's and walked through Vale Park every morning and night. Nice school, the person who wrote the first bit has got it so wrong. Anon
I also went to Vaughen Road school in 1951 to 1955.It was a wonderful school. I remember the Tower Grounds and the dance hall, Bill Gregson on a Saturday night was wonderful, If I could go back for just one night I would, the fireman's ball and the panto ball were fantastic. Thanks for all your letters to this page, it has given me a lot of pleasure reading them. Anon
fabulous, I was also brought up in NB and went to Maris Stella, Wellington Road, also Nesta Bellis then Clarendon High School in Liscard, Sue Wignall
I remember days out to New Brighton in the late 1970s, even though its only a stones throw from Liverpool it always seemed abit exotic, thinks it was because it was a bus and a train ride away or sometimes a bus, ferry, bus ride away. It used to be packed with day trippers. I vividly remember donkey rides along the promenade from the fair next to the Lido to the Pier and back and swimming in the sea/Mersey on the marine lake side of the Fort. My Nan would lay on a massive, or so it seemed to me, picnic .My mum would constantly fret about us catching sunstroke saying we would catch the sun a lot easier by the sea, as if we where abroad and not just the other side of the river. When i was abit older i would go with my mates and we would spend every last penny on the Mexican Hate and Ghost Train in the Palace in door fair. I went back to New Biff very recently and the beach is better than ever, especially on the river side, a lot cleaner, but the rest of it looks sadly quieter. Both sets of my grand parents loved the place, my dad told me about a last day out there just before the war broke out and my mum remembers going in the 50s ,on cattle boats because the ferries where so full. She remembers being dared to jump off the high board at the Lido{ Never Again!} and going on the Figure Eight at the Tower Grounds {Never Again!}. I know live in the city centre and have a great view of the Light House and Fort and the beach, its really re awakened my interest in New Brighton, funny how you can feel a real connection with a place without never having lived there
Who ever wrote the piece about Vaughan Road School being a hell hole must have been attending a different school then me. I was there from 1952 to 1959, and the teachers there were brilliant. One especially was Mr Noel Molyneux Waugh who taught me in the last two years of my junior school. I can say that through his teachings I learnt to play chess, develop my love of poetry and Shakespeare, write in a fair italic hand and appreciate art, and make me the person I am today. Elaine Davies (nee Paterson)
Your can read about Maris Stella school here
With all these people that attended Maris Stella does any one know when it closed, and what street it was on? rmcintyr6 Canada
I am 69 years old and attended Maris Stellar Convent from 1945 to 1951. My family emigrated to New Zealand in 1953. My name was Beryl Tonge. My contact is louisfamily @ extra.co.nz
My Father and his brothers and sisters grew up in a house on Magazine Lane in Wallasey, as a child I played in Vale park and walked the prom with my paternal family.. It is a beautiful place and very special to me. I returned 15 years after my Grandparents died and my own children were growing up and I introduced them to the place of my childhood.. magical for all of us. EB
My wife went to Maris Stella prep school in 1950-52. When did it close, an was it by the train station? Thank You rmcintyr6
Really enjoyed the trip down memory lane. I too was raised in Wallasey, but when I was 11 I went off to St Anselm's in Birkenhead and all the great girls I knew went off to Maris Stella !
I too grew up in NB AND AM NOW 65, STILL LIVING ON THE Wirral I TOO ATTENDED MARIS STELLAR CONVENT FROM THE AGES OF 5-11 AND ALSO WENT TO NESTA BELLIS DANCE SCHOOL CAN REMEMBER DANCING IN A COUPLE OF SHOWS AT THE FLORAL PAVILION WHICH INCIDENTALLY HAS BEEN REBUILT. I REMEMBER WATCHING THAT FIRE WORK DISPLAY SITTING ON THE VERANDA OF OUR HOME ON WELLINGTON ROAD, AND MUST HAVE BEEN STILL A TODDLER. MY MOTHER WHO IS 87 REMEMBERS THE "NEW" PROM BEING BUILT AND THE BATHS, AND RECALLS THE SAND DUNES WHICH PRECEDED IT AT THE BASE OF ATHERTON AND PORTLAND STREETS. I COULD GO ON, HAPPY DAYS!
I'm 60 years old, went to New Brighton Maris Stella Convents, Primary and Secondary. Living in Ireland but trying to connect with a school friend named Annamarie Mellon, not seen for 45 years!
After the war there was a giant firework display at New Brighton Baths - I was terrified that the "stars " would fall on me and had to be taken home . Strangely I grew to love fireworks displays and now wild horses won't keep me away ! As a teenager growing up in Wallasey New Brighton was the centre of our summer holidays . My best friend at the time worked for the prom photographer - possibly Bob Bird - and it seemed a very glamorous occupation at the time. My first marriage proposal was made on the pier - I said " no thank you " - I was 16 at the time !!! Is it me or was it always sunny in New Brighton ? If it wasn't it certainly feels as if it was . Although it has changed out of almost all recognition on a summer morning walking along the wall of the marine lake if I close my eyes it almost seems I can hear the noise of the fairground and smell the diesel used to run the machinery and the sweet overpowering flavour of the candy floss .......... ah - those were the days !

Heavens above I also attended Maris Stella convent school at New Brighton and also the Nesta Bellis dancing school. I am now 62 years old. To the anonymous writer, please get in touch. My email address is swchoir @ gmail.com I've lived in Australia for 40 years. Cheers, Marie Drscoll

 


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Memories of Wilkies Palace, Funfair, New Brighton