Memories: Childhood games in the early thirties

Shanklin Road was my stomping ground at the ripe old age of eight or nine in the early thirties. Entering the road from Hartington Road, on the right hand [east] side there was Edes, the wireledss people who charged accumulators, then Holders, and a small General Store at the bottom of Bembridge Street, where they would cut cheese with a wire.

Continuing along the east side there were Hammond, Spain and Newman. Turning right to go up the hill there was Souther on the right hand side and at the intersection of Whippingham Street, the Bonchurch Laundry. Coming back down the hill on the North side was Lemon, Denyer, and at the bottom of the hill Jacobs. Towards Hartington Road on the west side of Shanklin Road lived the Matthews.

We used to play a game of Release where we had two sides and if you captured one of the opposing side, three knocks on the head, and they were captured and held captive within a chalk square at the bottom of Bembridge on the North side.

The object of the captor’s team mates was to get into the chalk square without being banged on the head and shout “Release” to free all your captured buddies. It seems a stupid little game in retrospect, but believe me it appeared deadly serious at the time.

During the summer an icecream man would come around in the evenings in a two wheeled horse and cart.

I think those were the days of innocence which can never be regained.

The very best to all in Brighton,

Comments about this page

  • I lived in Hastings Rd 1942-1953 and would like to correspond with anybody who went to Fairlight School about these dates. Mr Fluck was caretaker at this time. If anybody out there would like to get in touch with interesting events it would be greatly appreciated.

    By Ray (30/08/2009)
  • My family lived at No. 27 then 33 Shanklin Road during the late 30s. I remember with affection the Hammonds – Phyllis and Roy, and also the Matthews – Walter and my great friend Albert Matthews. Does anyone remember the little old lady who ran a tiny sweet and general shop from her front room, first house on the left coming in from Harrington Road? Yes, we kids had great fun playing games in the roads then – Mr. Hammond, I remember, had a motorcycle and sidecar – the only mechanical transport in the whole street. They certainly were the days! Incidentally, if anyone has any knowledge of a place named Warren Farm, up near the racecourse I believe, I would very much like to hear from them.
    [Editor: You may want to look atthis pageabout Warren Farm.]

    By Ron Robinson (17/09/2009)
  • Games?..what about marbles in a chalked circle or played along the gutters and “tabs” skimming cigarette cards across the pavement with variations of “kiss’ems” and “knock’ems”. Great fun too, was propelling an old pram wheel up and down the street with the aid of a stick! Yes, we had some great games with very basic gear. How different it all is today.

    By Ron Robinson (20/09/2009)

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