The Ridgalite

The Rigalite focuses on the People who lived in Marina Avenue in the Ridges Estate in North Shields. Eddie Saint owns the Roaring venture a trawler moored at the fish quay- his crew work hard and play hard - one of them is Ron Lee a young lad who has aspirations of becoming a rock star. He was in the Royal Navy on board the HMS Illustrious as a trained chef before joining the trawler boat. The lads all tell him that his songs are crap because they don't wan't to lose a good cook. The story also tells of two rival shop keepers- Ronnie Hancock and Billy Burston have been each others throats for years- read the comic antics of both men. "The Ridgalite is an insite of life in the early sixties on an an estate with high unemployment and little hope - where every day is a constant struggle. There are some though who prove that if you have hope then dreams can come true.


80. 80

to wash himself in the stone sink; he was drying himself as he heard the chain being pulled in the toilet. The kettle was now boiling so he placed two tea bags into the pot and filled it. He replaced the lid then set it down on the table as Paula returned.

“Good morning.’

“Morning said Paula softly then kissed him gently on his cheek.’

“What are your plans today?’

“I haven’t any really Doug; everything has been arranged now so there’s nothing to do. We could take the car and go and spend the day out somewhere.’

“That would be nice; where would we go.’

“Well we could go to Scotland; Edinburgh is only a hundred and fifty miles away.

“What about Whitby; my father used to take us all there when we were little.’

 “Alright then, Whitby it is.’

“I will put something up for us to eat and we can have a picnic. It is a nice day today so we can eat out in Falling Foss tea garden.

Doug found a picnic hamper that his parents used made of wicker. They packed plates, and cutlery, a blanket to sit on and a large thermos flask. Paula used some empty jars from the cupboard above the stone sink to put sugar and milk into.

When they were all packed Doug placed the hamper into the boot.

“Are we ready then love?’

“I think so said Paula as they got into the car and drove to Newcastle and then took the road to Sunderland.

By ten o’clock both Dougie and Paula were wearing sun glasses as the glaze from the sun had them shading their eyes. They could have taken a detour and stopped off at Durham but chose to drive straight on to Hartlepool. Once there they then drove to Middlesboro then it was more or less a straight run to Whitby along the coast.

They went to the harbour first and looked out where they saw the blue and white cobles moored in the harbour along with several trawlers. There was a small marina with several yachts inside. The river bends with houses on either side where you could see the abbey and the church of St Mary. Looking out from there you could see the piers. The abbey dates back to AD 657. Whitby was used as a whaling port in the middle of the eighteen hundreds. Alum mining and jet Jewellery became popular in the turn of the century. The North Yorkshire coastline is very beautiful. Paula and Dougie visited the souvenir shops where Dougie bought her a lovely necklace and some earrings. The Jurassic jewellery was formed by falling of the monkey puzzle trees that compressed and fossilised. They walked to the abbey and had a look around before then going to the Church. Paula thought the church was odd because it was not like a conventional church. She got a strange feeling as she walked inside to see many boxes of seats that came almost head height and resembled cattle stalls. “They certainly didn’t waste any space in here she told Doug.’ It was one o’clock by the time they reached the Falling Foss tea gardens where they found a quiet spot and set the blanket down and ate lunch together.

This has brought back so many happy memories for me Doug; my mother and father loved coming here they told me and you know what, I felt a strange presence in the church as if they were there with me.’

“I know now that they are together again and they are happy.’

After they had sat for over an hour they packed the hamper and put it back into the car

They drove to the harbour then walked along Sandsend beach hand in hand as the gentle surf pushed its way up the shoreline.

Some of the cobles were now leaving to go out and fish and the men on board the trawlers made ready to put out to sea as they walked along the shore. The seagulls 

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