I could see the lake frozen over and thought it was worth the hike.
I was born in 1955 and when I think back over my memories I smile and have a feeling of hurt, knowing that that’s all they are – just memories.
I lived on the Chirton Grange Estate, North Shields and I can remember when I was 11yrs old and walking down Beach Road, heading for Tynemouth boating lake. It was a rough snowy winter and the whispers were that the lake had frozen over. When I finally arrived there I could see the lake frozen over and thought it was worth the hike. After a couple of hours playing on top of the lake, I was starting to realise that I had a return journey all the way back home. The thought of walking up the hill on Beach Road was on my mind. I was thinking, “If only I had some pennies to get on the bus straight into Chirton Grange”.
Other memories include the store horse pulling a large four wheeled container. One day it pulled up outside of my front door and I ran out to greet it, with a crust of bread to feed the horse, thinking that was another good deed I had done. But as I walked back into the house (a little chuffed), my mother’s voice sounded angry as she said, “Do you think bread grows on trees?”
I also remember playing out in the summer nights till late and waiting for your call to come in. If you were lucky your first call would be, “Five more minutes and then I want you in”.
Tynemouth Lake in Winter
Photograph from Newcastle City Library Photographic Collection