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Interview with Mrs Gladys Kneale about schooling in Baldwin and working in Douglas

Audio Player:

Date(s): 14 June 1990

Creator(s): Manx Museum

Scope & Content: Gladys Kneale talks to Nigel Wright, and another unnamed interviewer, about her schooling in Baldwin and working in Douglas. Gladys describes walking to Baldwin school; games played by children; boys leaving school at 13 or 14; the subjects taken; making toast in the boiler room; sweet shop and post office in Baldwin village; teachers, school holidays and absences for farm work; thinning turnips; Lark Hill orchard; school clothes, including clogs; Abbeylands Sunday School and church; her father as local preacher; Coronation trip; tea parties at Christmas and harvest home; leaving school aged 14.

She talks about living in Douglas; keeping house for the family of five; employing housekeepers; Willie Brew the draper; her father’s shop in Ridgeway Street, then Lake Road; Bucks Road cable car; Douglas shops and market place; summer visitors; entertainment on Douglas Head ferries; Dougie Buxton; circuses; Port Soderick; Marine Drive electric tram; first trip on Steam Packet boat to Liverpool; buying cod from the quayside; her father taking a trip on a fishing boat to the Orkneys; wartime entertainment at the Villa Marina; Isle of Man Tourist Trophy (TT) races riders staying with them; going to Hillberry to watch TT practices; motorcar racing at Willaston; not enough visitor accommodation and boarding houses in Bucks Road and Demesne Road; coaches on Christian Road; open buses for visitor excursions.

Gladys recalls how Douglas was quiet during the Second World War; internees; her first time on the steam train to Crosby; taking the tram to Laxey; marrying her husband, a sergeant, at Kirk Braddan; honeymoon at Ballasalla Police Station; Kirk Braddan open air Sunday services; concerts on Douglas Head; swimming baths at Port Skillion.

She returns to talking about her schooldays including going to the picture houses in Douglas, Regent Street and others; games; clothes; Baldwin and Abbeylands choir; taking her piano on a milk cart to concerts; Jack Gelling conducting the choir; Annie Quayle, teacher, recently died aged 103. She ends by talking about how her husband’s father spoke Manx Gaelic; Manx words used in English sentences; food; baker on Prospect Hill; going to school in all weathers; and a story about a rag-and-bone man in Douglas.

Administration / Biographical History: Gladys Kneale (b.1899). Nigel Wright, assistant keeper and social history curator for Manx National Heritage (c.1990-1994).

Language: English

Extent: 1 hr. 8 min. 12 sec.

Item name: magnetic tape

Collection: Sound Archive

Level: ITEM

ID number: SA 0148

Access conditions: All reasonable attempt has been made by Manx National Heritage to trace and request permission (where needed) from the copyright holder(s) in this sound recording. If however you think you are a rights holder then please contact Manx National Heritage.

Subject tags : #UOSH, #UOSHTT


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