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A Shout From The Attic: Trinity Street Again

...Above there was the unusual front of Fox’s Dancing Academy. I attended there for two or three Saturday morning shilling's worth before deciding on a common vote that I was not destined to dance. Near there down some railinged cellar steps was the dark domain of Mr Armitage, cobbler...

Ronnie Bray recalls the surroundings of his town-centre home.

To read earlier chapters of Ronnie's vivid autobiography please click on http://www.openwriting.com/archives/a_shout_from_the_attic/

The next shop was the first to sell Birds-Eye frozen fruit juices after the war, and then the corner of Greenhead road with the Co-op and a little above that the charming dairy with fresh cream cakes daily that tasted better than the best artificial cream cakes sold at the Co-op.

The next reach of Trinity Street held a closed-down café and then through the big archway was a builder’s yard from where I went on my annual trip for a threepenny bucket of slaked lime whitewash for someone to come and apply to the scullery walls to keep them clean and fresh smelling. The other side of the arch was an organ teacher with an imposing plaque outside his door. Then a small drapery shop that belonged to Mollie Mason and her husband.

Next in train was Billy Rhodes's greengrocer shop with a green pull down roller shutter and all kinds of fruit and vegetables. Sometimes he sold them from a horse and cart calling from door to door. Billy lived across the street from us at the bottom corner of Fitzwilliam Street’s Junction with Wentworth Street with his wife and his daughter Margaret Rhodes who was easily confused in the minds of children with Princess Margaret Rose. Some years later, Barry Heap’s parents put in a glass front and made a brave effort to sell antiques from Billy’s old shop.

Under the small arch was Pop Johnson’s fish and chip shop. It was a small room with a window to Trinity Street with ingress through a door in the archway, housing a big square iron vat with a coal fire in a grate underneath from which he produced very good fish and finerks, as chips were sometimes called. Fish, mostly cod, was twopence and chips were a penny, making threepence for fish and chips same as down at Bill Haley’s sparkling shop with a multicoloured vitriolite and chrome frying range made by Taylor's of Leeds Road Huddersfield. It was in Johnson’s that my mother blackmailed the poor old man into providing a ha’po’rth of chips on the threat of giving him his already wrapped fish back for resale. She got the chips!

Above there was the unusual front of Fox’s Dancing Academy. I attended there for two or three Saturday morning shilling's worth before deciding on a common vote that I was not destined to dance. Near there down some railinged cellar steps was the dark domain of Mr Armitage, cobbler.

Higher up at the bottom side of the next archway, Bulls Yard, was another little sweet shop, but I did not go into it until the old man died and his daughter sold off some of his stuff from the window. I bought his Meerschaum pipe and case and his big fountain pen. Items that I did not need, could not use, but that held for me a fascination hard to explain unless you have been a compulsive collector.

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