Ladies and gents hairdressing
The hairdresser’s in this photo, above Joe Lyons, 14 North Street, was once run by a Mr and Mrs Missana. When I was seven or eight maybe, in approximately 1953/4, my mother sometimes took me to her part time work at Missana’s. A side entrance at Lyons led upstairs to two departments. The ladies section at the front was governed by Mrs Missana where they did not only hair dressing but manicure, eyebrows, and face massage too. Mr Missana preferred his staff not to knit in quiet periods. Mum was quite an artist, so spent her relaxing moments drawing. She had quite a collection of drawing blocks and I loved browsing through them.
Working in the school holidays
The gents department, in the connecting room to the rear, was run by Mr Missana. He was of Italian origin and if I remember correctly his Christian name was Rudolph. My mother would be called in to cut the gents hair sometimes if they were busy which could include a shave and steaming hot face towels. In school holidays I was allowed to go to work with her. I would help sweep up the hair after cutting or sort the curlers in the trays ready for the next customers. Sometimes a customer would give me a small tip for sweeping up.
Mother’s lucky number
My mother’s lucky number was always thirteen. That included the thirteen diamonds in her engagement ring. One day she noticed one of the little diamonds was gone. Lots of searching went on at home and work but to no avail. Number thirteen was gone. About six weeks later, in a holiday period, I was helping sweep up when suddenly I said, “Mum, what’s that shining there?” Lo and behold it was the missing diamond. Difficult to imagine after six weeks of constant sweeping up after cutting many a hairdo, that this minute little thing would still turn up. So number thirteen was lucky enough to have escaped the broom and the trash bin and stay lucky. That day I believe I got some extra pocket money for all the excitement and relief it brought, so number thirteen brought me some luck too.
Ladies – do you remember this hairdressing salon – maybe you had a perm there in the 1950s. And gentlemen – any of you call in here for a short back and sides? If you can share your memories with us, please leave a comment below.