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Old 9th Apr 2021, 11:36 am   #14
dave walsh
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Ramsbottom (Nr Bury) Lancs or Bexhill (Nr Hastings) Sussex.
Posts: 5,230
Default Re: Anyone have a time machine I could borrow?

My grandmother had a more superior [end] terraced house to ours. [Well she did have six children-including my mother]. It had a bathroom and inside toilet. The front room" was quite grand, always cold and seldom used. Mostly we were in the kitchen with the open range that produced the best bread and butter pudding in the world. In that daunting front room, there was a disused nineteen twenties "wireless" [I'm guessing!] in an ornate cabinet, left behind the chaise lounge! When I was seven or eight she gave this to me and I pulled it apart. I even painted some of the valves white! This seems daft but I think I was trying to somehow emulate a rare Sc Fi program I'd seen on the 9" screen 405 line TV at home.

Grandma Florence had been widowed for a long time. Eventually she came to live with us in a new "semi". On holiday she met a very cultured retired gentleman who had worked at Rolls Royce and subsequently got married again. I was a teenager by then and only visited their home in Derby perhaps once or twice. It was quite modern but I was amazed to see he had a [definitely] 1920's wireless of some sort-green wiring brass and copper components including two large tuning dials that had to be adjusted separately [reaction or an early un-ganged Superhet design perhaps? It took pride of place on the sideboard but seemed enormous as it was laid out "bread board" style, not encased at all. Mr Saunders had built it as a young man and it was a prized possession so I couldn't get too close. It was tuned exclusively to the Longwave program and used everyday. I think it might even have been powered by re-chargeable cells but I might be making that up. After ten years he had a heart attack and died while polishing his Mini. My Gran was hospitalised and the house sold. I was never able to find out what happened to the set despite hints dropped via my aunts. Only one of the six children was a male, my uncle Jack. I used to tell people that he had been killed by a 500lb bomb during the war! Jack was a bomb loader in the RAF. One slipped in it's sling and struck his head. He died on Xmas Eve 1942.

At one point I was in Social Work and responsible for children on my caseload who were subject to Supervision Orders. One teenage girl was in a relatively up-market Detention Centre. This was by no means usual but I suspect it was because the Headmistress of this single sex school was quite posh [but very friendly]. Think Ealing Comedy or St Trinian's! During one of my Statutory visits she reported that my charge was doing well. In fact she had been one of a group of girls from the school that had helped her to clear out her late brothers house two weeks previously. I got the sense that it was a rather grand property. She said that one of the biggest tasks had been emptying the Attics of all her brothers radio equipment, a lot of it dating back as far as the twenties.....and taking it to the dump! I remember her saying "Are you all right Mr Walsh?" as I choked on my cup of tea.

Dave W
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