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Walking along Glendale Gardens the other day and seeing all the new houses I couldn’t help remembering how it was back in the 'olden' days when I  was a child.

On the corner of Elm Road the Salvaton Army still stands where we were sent to Sunday School and choir practice and my brother learned to play the trumpet.

Sunday School treats were a slide show of the starving children of Africa or a trip to the cliffs opposite Gypsy Bridge, where we played games and drank our pop and ate our jam sandwiches.

I lived in Lymington Avenue, on the corner was Despy’s the printers, called Super Speed Printing. If you peered through the window you could watch the printing press.

A little further on was a small group of shops, the bakery was my favourite, the bread was handed over the counter, no wrapping, but warm from the oven. I used to pick off the crusty bits as I walked home.

Just passed Southsea Avenue was the fish shop, Inge the butcher and Yeoman’s the oil shop where we went to buy paraffin for the oil stove and took our accumulator to be charged up for the wireless.

Next door was the stationer’s,  outside there was always a revolving rack of postcards, we used to giggle at the naughty ones, even if we were not sure what they meant.

Then on the corner of Leighville Grove was the off licence. The boys used to sneak into the back yard, take a few bottles, then go into the shop, return the empties and get the money for them, We used to to buy a bottle of ginger beer between us and sit on the crenellated wall    on the other corner and pass the bottle from one to the other.  No health and safety in those days.











Further along was the laundry (Lyndale's) and a hairdresser and the cobbler. I hated going there, the person serving always confused me as I never knew if it was a Mr or a Mrs.

At the end of the road was a big house, Tower House, home of the Mayor, it had  a huge garden and in the evening we could creep in and sit on the swing. Tower House later became a children’s home.

On the north side, coming from Elm Road  was more  Super Speed. On the corner of Lymington Avenue was a small dark grocer’s shop, then the Co-op Dairy, Glendale Cafe, the florist, another Grocer and Bumstead the Greengrocer.

Further along was Mr Hack the chiropodist, a hairdresser and a barber’s shop. Then came the Elim Church and Harveys the coal merchant.

I’m sure I have missed out a few important shops, I do remember that we could do all our shopping in Glendale Gardens, but  it was never as interesting as the bustling Broadway.

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