Independence

Dad acquired a dilapidated old  BSA1 bike in around 1955. I’ve no idea where he got it but it was unrideable. Father and son worked many nights in the back yard to renovate the machine. I loved the sense of freedom I got riding with friends to the beach or nearby hills.

We loved to cycle to Grangetown to watch the coke ovens being emptied. There was a line of coke ovens very close to the road. We waited in anticipation for one of the doors to be opened and the huge block of white-hot coke was pushed out and then tumbled into a hopper. As the coke hit the air, it burst into flame and sprinklers doused it in billows of steam. If the wind was blowing in the wrong direction, we got rained on from the condensation.

Years later when I started work I saved up to buy a smart powder blue Douglas 7-speed racer with derailleur gears and dynamo lights.

Teresa Brewer – ‘Let Me Go Lover’  1956
You don’t want me
But you want me
To go on wanting you
Now I pray that
You will say that
We’re through

Next: Washing day

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