A Place Beyond The Priory

 "A Place Beyond the Priory " This is a story about Life in North Shields during the 1900's-1920's Tom Farrow is a third generation coble fisherman, Who meets and falls in love with a young herring girl who has travelled from the isle of Barra in the outer Hebrides looking for work. Margaret Linnie, her two friends Kerstin McDonald and Beth Munro all end up on the gutting line in Tyne Brand - their unscrupulous foreman Albert Mortimer treats all the girls on the line like animals including his wife Lizzie who bares him 11 children. forced into a marriage she did not want, Lizzie is abused by Albert for his own sexual gratification. She was in love with a young Greek boy called Leonidas Kostalas whom she had known from her days at school and lost her virginity to but her father will not allow them to marry- this is a story of love and betrayal and will keep you riveted until the last page is read.

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It was after ten o’clock when they left the Dene and walked to the stop and waited for a tram.

“Do you want to go to the picture house with me tomorrow asked Martha?’

“Yes, what time?’

Well the pictures start at seven thirty but I was hoping that we could spend the day together.’

“I want that too Martha.’ “Can I call on you?’

Best not, my father is a bit strict with me where boys are concerned.’

“Boy am I, he joked; I’m a man now.’

 “You know what I mean she smiled.’

“Alright where?’

“We can take a picnic and go to the beach.’

“Great, I’ll bring my costume.’

They spotted the tram coming in the distance and Benny Grabbed another kiss before it arrived as he knew that she would not kiss him when the bus stopped in Byker in case someone saw her.

When the tram arrived he let Martha get on first and they went upstairs and sat at the back.

There was a gentleman on his own sitting down at the front as the conductor came and took their fare.

The middle aged man looked at them both and said “Young loves dream.’ You’re a very lucky lad to have such a beautiful girl.’

Benny knew it already but said nothing.’

“I am lucky to have such a handsome lad as well said Martha; I love him so much.’

The conductor smiled; then said I used to be like you two when I was young. I’ve been married to her thirty years and I still love her as much today as I did then.’

That’s lovely said Martha; I hope Ben still loves me when we have been together that long.’

By the look in both of your eyes, you will love each other all your lives.’

Thank you.’

The tram headed down Chillingham Road as the conductor went down stairs.

“So you love me then said Benny?’

“Yes I do; more than you will ever know.’

“I love you more.’

“So you love me do you Ben?’

“I’ve loved you since we were in infant school.’

 “You took your time getting around to it she laughed.’

“It was worth the wait.’ There’ll never be another woman for me as long as I have breath in my body.’

“That’s so romantic Ben.’

The Tram pulled in on Shields Road and Ben got up he stepped aside to allow Martha to get off.

They walked over to the other side of the road Martha took his hand in hers. Then when they got to her street she said Ben Leonard you are my man now and forever.’ She kissed him long and hard on the lips then turned and walked towards her house.

 

 

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