Friday, 26 October 2018

FRIDAY FOTO 32 - TOXTETH, LIVERPOOL - WHERE I GREW UP

(Terraced houses in Hughson Street)

An official photo, taken around 1963 by the City Council, prior to the properties being purchased and subsequently demolished under a Compulsory Purchase Order.

Hughson Street in Toxteth, Liverpool was where I spent my formative years, up until the age of seven years old. 

Number 25 in the street had been the home of my grandparents, William and Elizabeth Welsh, prior to my birth. Following this, my parents, brother and I also lived in the same property, which only had two bedrooms - one front and one back - and a small back kitchen and front reception room on the ground floor. My aunt slept on a pull-out couch downstairs, while my grandparents had the front bedroom. My family, the four of us, all slept in the rear bedroom. 

There was no bathroom in the house, an outside WC being supplied instead which had been situated at the bottom of the back-yard. A large brick coal-shed also stood outside in the yard. This had formerly been built as a bomb shelter and used by our family during WW2 when German bombers attacked the city during the Liverpool Blitz of 1941. The gap between the two blocks of houses to the right of the photograph was where numbers 27 and 29 once stood. 27 took a direct hit from a bomb and 29 had to be demolished as it had been too badly damaged to repair. The subsequent 'bommie' which was created, (the bulldozed area of land where the houses had once stood), then became a play area for two generations of our family. 

This photograph brought back so many memories for me when I found it posted on one of the Liverpool Facebook pages, but it was to surprise me even further when I enlarged it and looked at the image more closely.

The front door of number 25, next to the bommie is open and there are children playing outside. The boy outside our home looks suspiciously like my brother Gary.  

Amazing to think that the official council photographer chose that particular moment to record the properties which were to be demolished in just a few years time, as well as recording my brother and his friends at play.     

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