My First Memory of a Christmas Morning

My first memory was of a Christmas morning, possibly my fourth year

My father had died from the Spanish flu in December 1918 leaving my mother with a baby coming and myself.

For some reason, we had to leave our top floor flat and sleep downstairs in someone’s spare room. This was in Northumberland Square in Whitley Bay.

My first memory was of a Christmas morning, possibly my fourth year. On the mantelpiece was a wooden doll, a Dutch girl with legs which moved. This, with an apple and an orange, were my presents from Santa Claus. The doll would be quite a price nowadays.

At New Year we went to stay at Lloyds Bank House at Blaydon where we really had our Christmas. Santa Claus was always generous there: books for me and one year a huge doll for my sister Peggy. I remember all the passengers on the tram back along Scotswood Road commenting on it.

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