Behind the Wall

This photograph was taken in front of the little house in Benwell Village that I grew up in during the sixties. I’m on the left and my older brother Jeffrey is on the right. I don’t know when it was taken, but I was obviously just a young ‘un and it may actually have been before I started school. The house, as you can see, was quite small – basically two rooms on either side of each floor (each with one window) and with a kitchen at the back of the ground floor and a small bathroom upstairs. There was a similar house next door (of which you can see a part) and together these two were called “The Cottages”.

I wasn’t actually born in Benwell, which lies to the West of Newcastle upon Tyne, but in Walker which is to the East. However, we moved there when I was very young and all my earliest memories are from Benwell. Its name, incidentally, is derived from Hadrian’s Wall which ran from Wallsend (near to Walker) through the area covered by the modern city (which is built on the site where there has been a large town since mediaeval times), and west towards Carlisle. The whole area is littered with ruined forts, temples and mile stations and occasional pieces of the wall itself can be found between peoples’ gardens or next to modern roads; good examples include the fort at Condercum and the nearby temple which was right next to the wall itself. Benwell lies just to the south of the wall, hence its name which is a corruption of “Bynnewalle” meaning “behind the wall” and the oldest historical record of Benwell is from the 11th century, before the Norman conquest.

Our house was a strange place to grow up in primarily because of its location. Immediately behind The Cottages was Pendower School (Infants and Juniors) which I attended between the ages of 5 and 11. My trip to School in those days was about twenty yards, which made it quite difficult to think of excuses for being late. The other kids entered through the official gates on Pendower Way to the North or from Benwell Village itself to the West; I just had to turn left at the end of the garden and walk around the Cottages and I was there in the playground.

Pendower School was an austere, rather ugly,  building of Dickensian aspect but it was very well run by the Headmaster, Mr Brown, and had several very good teachers. I particularly remember Mrs Locke, Miss Stobbs and Mr Martin; the latter was a dapper fellow with a military moustache who was particularly good at drawing and painting as well as being hot on mental arithmetic, which we did every morning in class between 9 and 9.30 during my last year at Junior School. You know the sort of thing: “If it takes ten men three hours to fill a swimming pool with water using two buckets each, how long would it take two men each with one bucket?” This was Britain pre-decimalisation too, so we had to do mental arithmetic not only with pounds shillings and pence but also hundredweights, stones, pounds and ounces, gallons quarts and pints, rods poles and perches. Those were the days. Mr Brown the Headmaster didn’t take any classes but he insisted that we all did music and at assembly and during lunch he frequently played us classical music from an old gramophone. He particularly liked Purcell.

The School I attended (which had both boys and girls in it) shared its building with a school for older girls, but they were strictly separated from the youngsters, both inside and in the playground. There mustn’t have been enough space for the girls’ school so there were some outbuildings in the form of wooden huts at the edge of the playground, just to the right of The Cottages (from the viewpoint of the photograph). These were evidently for art lessons. I never went inside and was too small to look in through the windows, but they didn’t have very good drains and often the ground outside them was covered with brightly coloured mud resulting from botched attempts to dispose of paint that had ended up blocking up the pipes. The road our bikes are on in the picture was a sort of access road to allow deliveries to be made to these huts, but there were big metal gates (to the left) that were usually locked preventing access most of the time making this bit of road a good place to learn how to ride a bike, although I still hadn’t graduated from a tricycle when this picture was taken, for reasons that will become obvious later.

In front of The Cottages (i.e. behind the photographer’s position in the first picture) was a small wood called “The Spinney” which was enclosed on all sides by walls. In the slightly older picture to the right, which was taken from the garden looking south, you can see a little of the wood and some sheds that were later removed when the road was widened. This one was taken on my birthday, I think, but I don’t know which year it was.

Originally the two cottages were intended to house people who worked in a grand house at the south end of the Spinney which had been destroyed by fire some time before we moved in. The ruins of the house were still there for some time and they were the source of considerable fascination for me until eventually the council demolished what was left, carted the debris away and landscaped it over. That’s probably just as well as it was undoubtedly a dangerous place for a small child to be wandering about on his own.

The Spinney was probably about 100 yards square. The Cottages were in the northwest corner facing south, with Pendower School forming the rest of the northern edge, Benwell Lane to the south, where the entrance to the big house used to be, and Ferguson’s Lane as it passed through Benwell Village (past Block’s garage and the Hawthorn Inn) to the west. To the east was the former residence of the Bishop of Newcastle, another grand house called Benwell Towers, which, when I lived in Benwell, was being used a base for the Mine Rescue Unit, a specialist emergency service for the many coal mines that still operated in the area. Just a few years later all the mines were finished and Benwell Towers was flogged off to become a tacky nightclub. Since the house was supposed to have been haunted, the nightclub took the name of the ghost: The Silver Lady. This was all after we had moved away from the area.

So you will see that I lived in an unusual place when I was little: on the edge of the School playground, with my own private wood to play in, and with a haunted house only about 100 yards away!

On the far left of the original picture, which was taken facing north, you can see that there was a high wall running down the western side of the garden of our house. This carried on down the side of the house to the back where it formed the wall surrounding our back yard. There was both a door and a coalhole the size of a window in this wall, the one leading into the yard and the other to allow coal to be delivered directly from the street outside (Ferguson’s Lane) into the coalhouse, the place where it was stored. Coal provided the only heating in the house, including the hot water which was heated by a boiler behind the fires downstairs. There was no heating in the bedrooms at all and during the winter it was quite normal for there to be ice on the inside of our bedroom windows.

The backyard was also where our toilet was situated. Outside toilets (“netties”) are definitely a thing of the past but they weren’t at all unusual when and where I lived. There were only two problems with ours. One that there was no electric light so if you had to go at night it was necessary to take a paraffin lamp. The smell of paraffin always brings a memory of that back to me. I often think that if Marcel Proust had my background, A La Recherche de Temps Perdu wouldn’t have been full of that boring stuff about cakes. The other problem was the rats which frequented the area. The toilet door didn’t go all the way to the ground; there was a gap of an inch or so through which rats would sometimes poke their noses while you were on the bog, presumably attracted by the light. We kept a shovel in the loo to fetch down on the intruding rodents if they appeared. I never hit one, although I tried quite a few times. With the prospect of a rat appearing at any minute you didn’t hang around to do your business and were unlikely to need a laxative.

We had few of the comforts that people take for granted these days but my family wasn’t any worse off than any of those whose kids went to the same school as me. We always had enough food (as you can tell from the photograph), so we never thought of ourselves as being particularly poor. But it is true to say that our living conditions were pretty basic. We didn’t own the house, which I think was owned by the City Council (who also owned the Spinney), but our rent was very cheap because of the state it was in.

I go back to Newcastle from time to time, usually at Christmas. During one such visit I had the opportunity to pass through Benwell and look at where I used to live. Benwell is a grim place these days, devastated by crime and social disorder, which is depressing because I have such happy memories of the place. Even more traumatically, from a personal point of view, I realised that The Cottages, The Spinney and even Pendower School have all completely vanished.

The buildings were demolished and the little bit of woodland I used to play in ploughed up to make way for a new housing estate. The only thing that remains is a small piece of our wall, where the coalhole used to be, and behind which, forty years ago, a small boy sat, shovel in hand, hoping the rats would stay away.

48 Responses to “Behind the Wall”

  1. […] In the Dark A blog about the Universe, and all that surrounds it « Behind the Wall […]

  2. […] this time of year.  Since we had the Spinney in front of our house, we had very big bonfires in Benwell which lots of other kids came to. The number of private bonfire parties has decreased markedly since […]

  3. […] dad always claimed that Sting had played the double bass in our garage – when I lived in Benwell village. I don’t remember having seen him though, and I might well have been having my leg […]

  4. […] I noticed yesterday that an old post of mine about my childhood in Benwell, Newcastle upon Tyne, was attracting some interest. It’s one of the interesting […]

  5. virginia Tully Says:

    I too have very fond memories of my childhood growing up in pendower and attending pendower infant and junior school. I lived in Bertram cresent at that time. Yes, i remember Mr. Brown the headmaster, miss Stobbs,Mrs. King and Mrs. Oxford. On leaving pendower school my family and i moved to the country. On a visit to the area a while back i noticed all the housing estates and no pubs! Although st. Cuthbert’s school still stands. Does anyone remeber the tuck shop? I think they were sister’s that ran it they sold the most fabulous sweets. Well that shop is now a house! So many happy childhood memories.

  6. telescoper Says:

    Dear Virginia,

    I certainly remember the Tuck Shop, which was very close to the Police station. I remember being told that I once wandered off when I was a little kid and got lost. My parents were frantic with worry, and called in at the police station to report me missing. Apparently when they walked in, I was sitting there as large as life eating a bacon sandwich given to me by the Sergeant!

    I still have my school reports from Pendower. As well as Mrs Stobbs (Class 9), I also recall Mrs Bulman (Class 7), Mr Watson (Class 2) and the wonderful Mrs Locke (Class 5) who I adored, although she always gave me low marks for handwriting…


    • telescoper Says:

      I have received a very moving email from Mrs Locke’s son, Paul.

      Dear Professor Coles,

      It was with great pleasure that I read this posting from your blog and the comments further down relating to my late mother (Margaret Locke) who taught at Pendower for about eight years in the 1970s.

      My mother remembered you very well and would often make mention of you when talking of her teaching days. It’s possible that we even met in passing because there were occasional days (perhaps due to my illness requiring absence from my primary school or the staggering of school terms) when I was taken into Pendower for a day. I remembered your name back then as one of her high fliers.

      She took early retirement for family reasons in 1980 and passed away on April 23rd 2011 at the St Joseph’s
      Care Home on Westmorland Road.

      She would have been very pleased to see how well you have done.

      Best wishes,


      I’m very sad that I didn’t get to meet her again, and thank her for all the help she gave me.

  7. virginia Tully Says:

    Hello Peter,
    Your story about the police station is so funny. I do remember the wool shop and the lady who ran it as my mother used to buy yards and yards of ribbon for my pigtails there! I also remember the lady who owned the post office next door, if i’m not mistaken she lived above the shop too. Remembering the baker’s on benwell lane and further along the road a little sweet shop on the corner,we used to cut up Rushie avenue to get home.
    I have great memories of pendower school, when Mr. Brown retired ,Mr. Kieth took over as headmaster, although i did prefer Mr. Brown. I left school in 1978 , my brother left in 1974 his name is John Tully you may of known him? I am so sorry to hear your father passed away,


  8. michael erskine Says:

    hi iwas born 1959 and grew in pendower way at the top on the junction of please ave and fox and hounds lane,i have really enjoy ready your blog and it brings back great memories of a happy childhood although i was knocked down by a bus no 38 which was thankfully slowing down just outside of the new school st cuthberts which was being build at the time i ran out from the building site straight on to the road and bang,i even had a visit from a local bobby to ask what i had being doing there,that would not happen now. thanks for the memoriesm michael erkine

    • Mick Fothergill Says:

      Wow Michael how you doing do remember Jamie Eddie McMahon Ross Dugdale and Zoony?

    • Hello Mick, finally found you on something. it’s Dave Jamieson. I dissapeared to Africa 25 years ago but get back every couple of years or so. Live in France when back in Europe… I remember the Liilya and hanging around with my brother Kev and Jeff Coles around his house on the photos, Dunno how I stumbled on this site but great to hear some familiar names. Please contact if you se this.

    • Janine Guerin Says:

      Do you have a sister called Denise?

  9. […] still kicking myself for not acting quicker when it broke cover. If only I’d had a shovel like when I was […]

  10. neil mackenzie Says:

    What a brilliant site, I was in school at Pendower from 1950 until they merged with Atkinson Road and became John Marlay. I remember Mr. Brown then later Mr. Elliot, Mrs.Bulmer, Mr. Atkinson, Miss Gillespie (who lived at Wylam) Ernest Bernstein(Art) Mr.Toward(Metalwork) ‘Jock’ Round my bench come(Woodwork) Sid Godden(Science) he of leather belt! The playground on the roof and when you were below what a challenge to throw the tennis balls back to the seniors up top.
    Wrights hut for the sweeties and what you could filch as Mrs. Wright was partly blind! Happy days, if anyone remembers it would be nice to hear.

    • dickie bell Says:

      i went to pendower school from 1948 to 1955 when i left to go to wickham view school. the boys from the technical school used to shout my name to throw the ball up to them as i was one of the few who could reach it. as for mrs wright i helped her out in the shop at times, she used to say “can i help you” every now and then though she could not see much, bless her. her shop was in front of the pendower club, next to the green tree, great times. dickie.

    • Shaun Lodge Says:

      Jock “Round my bench come” was Jock Muir, as I remember from my time. I went to Pendower from 1954 – 1958. Other teachers that come to mind were Frank Fawcett – french, Mark Doney – english.
      At lunchtime some of us hung out at Weddell’s Dairy for a smoke, at the top of Delaval Road, which later became the post office. Jack’s fish and chip shop was just opposite, and provided a welcome change from school meals.
      After our GCEs we all went our seperate ways and I joined the army and served overseas. Today I live in Cebu, Philippines but still keep in touch with old classmates through Facebook

    • Stuart Miller Says:

      Jock Muir, (Round my bench come)

  11. I drove over Scotswood bridge from the south today and looked over towards Deleval Road and noticed a big empty patch of land . I made a D-Tour and to my sadness found that a large area south of Elswick Road has been demolished. I was born in Denton Gardens in ’61 and went to Pendower School with Jeffrey ( recognised the ginger hair) featured in the post , although he was the year below me. We were in the same Scout troop which met in the Hut in Benwell village on the opposite side of the road to the Gretna Rd turning .
    Anyone remember Miss Potter the reception class teaecher and the plastic birthday cake she used to stick candles in to get the class to sing happy birthday to you , we all got smarties to celebrate. There was a Miss Brown who was headmistress of the Infants ( no relation to mr Brown the headmaster of the Juniors) , there was a Miss Wislon and Mrs Todd in the infants , a Miss Davision who I think was the last teacher we had there . There was a Mrs Penman before you went into Mr Matins class. Mrs Penman made us all do italic writing with a flat pencil which ruined my handwriting . We moved out of Benwell in 1967 to a semi in the estate just off the bottom of Fergusons Lane which had an inside toilet after my first 6 years of using the “bucket” at night time because before you are 6 you dont want to go down the back steps and across the yard in case the bogie man got you !
    Anyone who was brought up in Benwell came from humble beginings however I think this makes you strive more for sucess in life.
    Driving along the top of Deleval Road today made me appreciate the 2 seater sports car I was in and drivng back to my detached house and my Regional Directors job I will be back at tomorrow but for a moment I relflected back on the hand-me-down clothes, hand knitted school jumpers, no toes in my shoes and when eventually into long pants having to wear them until they were at half mast before you got a new pair. Happy days !
    I knew the patch of woods just north of Deleval Road as the “lilly pond” as there was a well from the old cottage which had become derelict in the early 60’s and also a pond there, thus the “lilly Pond ” or “lillya” as we gave it in slang. It was the short cut from Pendower School home if you did not get caught jumping over the wall by the old lollypop man who stood at the top of the Deleval ROad just over from the Barbers , which became an Indian take away in later years !
    Fond memories.

    • telescoper Says:

      You’ve reminded me of a lot of things, especially the handwriting. Mine is also terrible, which is largely because of the bizarre way we forced to write at Pendower School…

      Believe it or not I still have my school reports from Pendower Junior School, so can name the teachers I had from there: Class 9 was Miss Stobbs, Class 7 Mrs Bulman, Class 5 Mrs Locke, Class 2 Mr Martin. I remember Mr Martin the best, but Mrs Locke was a very nice lady and I remember her with affection too. I’m looking at one report now, in which I got very good marks for everything except “Condition of Exercise Books”. I don’t know what became of any of my junior school teachers.

    • Sue Harker (was Braban) Says:

      Oh my! I remember the plastic birthday cake too! I was so sad as it’s my birthday during the summer hols so I never got it!
      I was born in 1960 and went through Pendower School then on to Whickham View before ending up in John Marley. We were the last year to be girls only!

    • Janine Guerin Says:

      I remember miss potter and mr brown the headmaster also miss king who was scary,, miss stobbs and mrs penguin. There was also a mr young who at the time I was told he moved to leeds to play football??

  12. kevin jamieson Says:

    WOW what memories I was at school with your brother jeff I pressume you are peter!! I am kev jamieson. I remember the lilliya and your place well. remember the moble dentist in the yard all were afraid?Great blog>

  13. Cheryl Mellan Says:

    I have been facinated to read all the stories about the village of Benwell. I live in Australia and I have found that I have a relative who was living at 104 Benwell Dene Terrace during the war years. Her name was Lilian. Our Moore family have lost touch with that side of the family so I was just googling Benwell.

    It is so sad that the area of Benwell has changed so much, I understand that all the old houses have now been demolished.

    We are lucky here that as large shopping centres have gone up it has not always caused the death of the smaller business. Most of the shops from my childhood in the 60’s and 70’s have remained today just changing hands and the type of business.

    I have enjoyed the site – thank you

    Cheryl, can be contacted at:

  14. Chris Smailes Says:

    Hello Peter,
    My name is Chris Smailes. I stumbled across your blog by accident when looking for photos of the old Rex Cinema in Fergusons Lane.
    This was sparked off by the fact that my mother is currently in respite care at Ferguson Lodge which is on the site of the old cinema. Our Scout hut (20th Newcastle – I was actually in the cubs at that time) was next door until it burned down.
    I went to Pendower Juniors from 1967 to 1973. If my memory is correct you were a bit younger than me but I do remember two brothers called Coles – my friends at Pendower were people such as Barry McGreevey, Stephen Crulley, Martin Crowe, David Atkinson, known as Zooney) etc.
    Reading your blog brought back many memories. Those were, or at least seem to have been, more innocent times. In addition to the things you talk about I remember doing Scottish Country Dancing with Ms. Penman and I was also (along with my sister) made to write in the Italic style – but I quite liked it.
    I remember collecting pennies for the Guy outside the Green Tree and the Hawthorn pubs opposite each other – you had to have a good Guy or you got nothing; and we had no sense of any danger.
    But perhaps that was just the innocence of youth.
    I remember falling out of a tree in the ‘Lillia”, gashing my palm on some glass and having to go to the General for stitches – I still have the scar. Happy Days !

    • telescoper Says:

      I have an older brother, called Jeffrey, who also went to Pendower….

      • Chris Smailes Says:

        Yes – I gathered that from later reading some other posts on your site and Jeffrey was definitely closer to my age – We might have been classmates – I just can’t remember. I was also taught by Mr. Martin of course – at that young age we were amazed that he kept his old car’s engine warm during the winter by putting a blanket on it under the bonnet – doesn’t seem so daft now. I do remember going into your Dad’s shop. In fact I even just remember Miss Ludgate’s wool shop but it is all such a long time ago ! However like you I do remember the Benwell of that time as being – well, never prosperous but getting by ok, and having a sense of optimism. Sadly a lot of that was later wiped out by the Thatcher recession, riots and subsequent policies which left working class areas to stew. Unfortunately it looks as if things are going to get worse again with the austerity measures which will hit the poorest the hardest.

    • Sue Harker (was Braban) Says:

      I was there then too and remember Stephen Crulley, Martin Crowe and David Atkinson. My best friend was Val Waggott. I lived on Benwell Lane and she lived on Pendower Way. As for Mrs Penman, she’s the reason why my sister (Ann Braban) has such beautiful italic writing! I also remember the country dancing and loved the may pole!

  15. I moved to Pendower from Walker about 1948.We lived at 1 Bertram Cres and it seemed quite luxurious compared to the house we left in Walker.I remember moving in day when lots of the youngsters in the neighborhood came by to see who was moving in and all so friendly. I attended St Josephs School on Armstrong Road untill going to St Cuthberts which I didn’t enjoy too much other than playing football for the school.I later played for Montague and North Fenham and had some of the best times of my youth,wonderful memories.
    The Lilly Pond was one of my hangouts and it wasn’t until years later that I found out that the whole piece of land was originally landscaped by the great Capability Brown.I guess that would be when the Bishop of Newcastle was in residence there.
    Wrights shop in the village was responsible for getting most of the youngsters in Benwell hooked on tobacco with their tuppenny Woodbines and a couple of matches thrown in.The old girl was as blind as a bat but she knew everything that was going on in her shop.I doubt if that would be possible today with the ammount of crime going on.
    I live in Canada now and often think back how good a place it was to grow up in.On a visit back home some years ago I was shocked to see what a state the old place is in now.Its been so long since I lived there I don’t really feel qualified to hazzard a guess as to why Benwell and its surrounding area has fallen so far.I do know that it made me quite sad and left me feeling that a return visit won’t be happening any time soon.

    • Ian Whyte Says:

      Dickie you and your gang were our gangs arch nemisis. (John Raines gang) he, myself(Ian White) Alan Armstong and Peter winskill. I also remember those times with fond memories.iii

  16. […] in which I was brought up. I’ve posted about the little house where my first memories live here, and there’s an old photograph of it […]

  17. Carolyn Wheeler Says:

    I came across this site while trying to see if I could find anything on Pendower School which my brother attended from 1951-1955. Was it called Pendower Tech as he was 11 when he went there (that was when he was there as he played truant most of the time) He now lives in Australia and is coming for a visit in July so was trying to find as much as I could so to give him a surprise as he talks of his school days (or lack of them) quite often. A bit of info would be great if anyone knows anything-is the school still there? I would love to take him to it if it is! Any info would be gratefully appreciated. Carolyn (My brothers name is Edwin Alan Devlin)

    • telescoper Says:

      I’m afraid the School was demolished many years ago. There’s now a housing estate where it used to be.

  18. All this reminiscing of our early days in Benwell and Pendower draws upon my memory cells as I started at Pendower infants in 1945 with Mrs Gilmore as teacher and remember Mrs Harris too and her daughter Gail of Rushie Avenue. When I moved up to the junior school we had a teacher called Mrs Wilkinson and there was a girl in the same class as me called Kathleen Jackson who lived in Tillmouth Gardens and opposite there on the West Road Geoffrey Rowe lived. There was also a Norwegian boy called Tory Wenberg who lived in Westacres Crescent. Who also remembers Mrs. Muirus of I think Coldstream Gardens. After sitting the 11+ we attended Whickham View for six months until the results of the exam meant that I was to go back to Pendower seniors when Mr Greenwood was the head-master, Sid Gogden was the science teacher, McClochlin I think was the English teacher who used the ‘Reader’s Digest’s word power to test us, ‘Johnny’ Walker for Geography wouldn’t be allowed to do what he did then, nowadays, Jock Muir for woodwork, and was it Mr. Hardy that was the biology teacher? Who even remembers being taught Morris dancing? Then there was ‘PoD’ for commerce. Didn’t ‘Col.’ Fawcett relate stories of his trips up the Amazon to us? I can now relate of my time in Africa, climbing Mount Kilimanjaro and going to the Victoria Falls. We were the first school in the area, as far as I know to take in two Indian boys who were newly arrived in the country, and one was assigned to our class but I don’t remember their names . Sid Carr, Brian Robson, Howard Chapman, Ian Robertson, Peter Wilkinson, Freddie May and TJ Robson were also in my class as was Barry Robinson of Turret Road in South Denton, with whom I worked as a television engineer in Gateshead, while he later went on to play tenor saxophone with the BBC Big Band.

    • Jonathan Ford Says:

      I was born in Benwell; my parents lived in Jennison Ave. My father’s parents lived in Bertram Crescent and my mother’s family were at 14 Rushie Avenue. My grandfather was a members of the Hodgkin Park bowling club and worked for Metal Box Company. Next door were the Bell’s and if i remember they had a son in the RAF police who was a dog handler and often brought home his alsatian when he was on leave. Presumably Mrs Harris is the mother of Douglas. He was a very close friend of my parents and he ran tea plantations in Uganda (or Kenya) for the CWS. He was chucked out of Uganda by Idi Amin and had to come back to England and worked as a VAT inspector. I, too, went to Pendower Infants until we moved to Fenham in 1959 so I don’t remember the names of the teachers. What I do remember is learning to write using a chalk board; we were not let loose on paper until we had mastered the rudiments. We moved south as a family in the mid-60s but came back to Benwell at least once a month until my grandfather died in the early 90s. Great times and happy memories.

  19. […] Since we had open ground right in front of our house, we had very big bonfires where I grew up in Benwell which lots of other kids came to. The number of private bonfire parties has decreased markedly since […]

  20. can anyone please tell me where maughan street was in benwell i had an aunt who lived at 177 maughan street,but i cant find it on any map ,thank you

  21. John Raine Says:

    I wish I could be more specific James but as far as I can remember Maughan St ran south from either Armstrong Road or Elswick Road.My sister in law who has a much better memory of that part of the west end sent me an email just days ago with many photos of the area in the 40’s/60’s which does has some photos of Maughan St.I think the photos have the Dunston Power Stn. in the background which would indicate that Maughan St ran from Armstrong Road.
    If you send me your email address I will be happy to forward it to you.

    • Ian Whyte Says:

      I remember smoking woodbines with you behind the council yard hut next to the crickhet field Ian Whyte.

  22. anyone remember mr gardner,he was our football coach.i remember he through loads 20ps in the bin as he didnt like the new shape i was there abround 1976

  23. […] up in Benwell which is to the West of Newcastle upon Tyne; you can find a couple of examples here and here. The place has changed beyond all recognition since I was a kid, which I suppose accounts […]

  24. Martin Taylor Says:

    I was born in Tynemouth, but my mam was brought up on Whickham View, some of my earliest memories are of staying at my grandparents, at number 19, reading your blog took me back to a visit to the wool shop with my gran or aunty, don’t think I’ve ever thought about it since the day. The only other shop I remember was the chippy near the top of Delaval rd., always used to smell beautiful. another memory I seem to have was lying in bed there seeing Blue flashing through the curtains and being told that it was just the trolley buses.😊

  25. Keith Oliver Says:

    I am researching my own family tree from Mill Lane Elswick my great aunt Bella Oliver born about 1889 also had a sweet shop in the 1940s -50s on Mill Lane,she married a Robert Clough.
    I would love to hear from anyone who remember’s Bella’sweet shop


  26. Does anyone remember Charmaine Bell, who went to “Whickham View School” in the late sixties,? She had a sister, leah, who was a “singer’ in social clubs l

    • David Jamieson Says:

      Was there not a Bronwyn Bell that used to live above the corner shop at the top of Benwell Dene Terrace? Not far from ‘Chopper Wallace’s’ barber shop..

      • Davey Atkinson Says:

        Alright Davey, wasn’t that all a good read, great memories, just been out for a drink in the toon with your Kev and Tony Mac and Paul Doc, lovely catch up, hopefully we can all get together for a drink when your back in toon.

  27. […] which I grew up. For example I’ve posted about the little house where my first memories live here, and there’s an old photograph of it […]

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