Audrey remembers village life in Leicestershire

Skipping and rounders

Photo:Audrey aged 17 in a favourite blue silk dress, taken at Jerome Studios, Leicester

Audrey aged 17 in a favourite blue silk dress, taken at Jerome Studios, Leicester

Photo:Audrey 2007

Audrey 2007

Photo from WRVS Heritage Plus Archive

I grew up in a hamlet in Leicestershire - no church, fifty two houses, although now it's very built up.  We lived in a small cottage with an outside toilet and wash-house, we would talk to each other using a cocoa can.

You walked to school, I walked with my sister. I was at the school between age 5 and 11 years. There was only one teacher, her name was Mrs Griffiths, she taught us everything.  I was so grateful for being taught to read. She always wanted to know if I we'd had dinner. I was the nit nurses favourite, she would bounce me on her knee.  We used to do a lot of singing. We played cricket and rounders.  We used to play 'tic' and 'What's the time Mr Wolf', proper hop scotch, things like that. I was happy at that school.  I remember saying to my mum, "I saw a rabbit going to school today." Mum said, "That's good. what did it learn?"

Sometimes we saw the hounds and huntsmen, we used to try and put the huntsmen off.

We used to dip each others plaits in the inkwells.

We did lots of skipping. My Mum was working in the fields, I'd go into the neighbours after school. It was horrendous going to the big school, so many buses, so confusing. I got lost day after day at the big school.  I am nervous now. I was so nervous then, so traumatised by the boys on the bus. They would bully me and try to  touch me, we were miles from anywhere. Mum knew but never said anything. I was terrified - I thought it was the norm, I felt very threatened.

You either passed the eleven plus and went on to Melton Mowbray Grammar or you didn't and went to Roundhill Secondary Modern.

I liked the male teachers. I liked English and was very good at PE. but I did not learn to swim until I was forty because I hated the pool, it was so cold. We went on a special bus to the pool and had tomato sandwiches.

You had to cross the road to the sports field, I was very good at rounders and played for the village team.

This page was added by Jane Turner on 27/01/2008.

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