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(2013) Working-class life in northern England, 1945–2010, Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan.

That was then

unpacking a sensible world

Tony Blackshaw

pp. 97-143

Let us start with what may be seen at first glance as some commonplace observations on northern English working-class life in the middle of the twentieth century. It is the winter of 1954. The Robertshaws have just moved into their first home together, which is a scullery back-toback terrace house in Holbeck. Filtered through the joint memories of Albert and June Robertshaw, we get fragments of circumstantial reflection of what appear to be 1930s living conditions as well as the rituals and impulses from a bygone age remaining largely unaffected by the social upheavals wrought by the Second World War. Albert begins by recalling that he and June bought the house because his "father never believed in renting houses. And all my aunties and uncles — I had many, they all rented, but me father never believed in renting and he said you should always buy, so we bought our own house and bought it over 5 years. We paid £5 down and 25 shillings a week".

Publication details

DOI: 10.1057/9781137349033_4

Full citation:

Blackshaw, T. (2013). That was then: unpacking a sensible world, in Working-class life in northern England, 1945–2010, Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 97-143.

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