A rude parrot and Black Rock

Black Rock Swimming Pool
Royal Pavilion and Museums Brighton and Hove

So many happy memories

What are my memories of growing up as a kid in Whitehawk? I have lots of them – it was a great time for me. What about the cobblers in Whitehawk Road? It was a tiny shop next to the post office. The front room was the shop, the whole place seemed so tiny. I remember Smiths the bakers – always a great one to warm up on the way to St Mark’s school in the morning. Of course there was the pet shop in Bristol Gardens, run by a couple of chaps with the parrot who said rude things.

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Bunking in at Black Rock

I have happy memories of skirting around the rocks at Black Rock to get into the swimming pool. A whole day would be spent sunbathing and swimming. We would take jam sandwiches in a Sunblest bread wrapper and a bottle of diluted orange juice. It was alright until the brown shrivelled chap who seemed to live there, would tell the lifeguard we had sneaked in without paying – just to be nasty. And who was that guy some said was an Olympic swimmer – so good at diving – who always caught us bunking in? Great days never to be forgotten.

Comments about this page

  • I remember the pet shop on the corner of Bennett Road, I’m sure the speaking bird was not a parrot but a myna bird which sat on its perch about half way down the shop; you’re right about two chaps who were a couple running the pet shop though. I used the cobblers many times to resole my leather brogues and loafers which were the rage in the late 1960s to early 70s. I seem to remember the tanned old boy who was always in Black Rock pool was called Ron, he used to dive off the top board several times a day. 

    By Michael Brittain (11/07/2015)
  • I remember being fascinated by the mechanical model in the window of the cobbler. I was at St Marks infants and juniors from 1954 – 1960 and remember getting a bag of previous day’s cakes from Whites (?) Bakers in Rugby Place for an old penny.

    By Mick Sutton (28/07/2015)
  • What a lovely surprise to see this page. Joe Read the shoe repairer, played golf with Joe, real gentleman and great company, Doris his wife made lovely sandwiches too.
    St Mark’s School ’51 to ’57

    By Michael Penfold (05/02/2020)
  • Have just discovered this page. So lovely to read the comments about the cobblers shop.Joe and Doris were my parents.
    Lots of happy memories of St Mark’s School and Black Rock swimming pool.

    By Jenny Milford (19/01/2021)

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