The Troubles

"The Troubles " the story is set in Belfast and the North East in 1969.
Seamus Webster and his family flee the riots in Belfast and come to live on Barnstaple Road in North Shields - where he takes up work as a crane driver in Smith's Docks his wife Annie finds a job in the Co-op in Whitley Bay - Seamus is good at DIY and gets lots of work decorating or fitting out new kitchens for people. His father Michael is serving a very long sentence when he is implicated in a
bombing of an army base- his skills as a bomb maker have been passed down to his oldest son and Stephen Mcgill is on the look -out for him as a bombing campaign has begun on mainland Britain. Newcastle has been chosen as the target - can Seamus avoid getting mixed up in this. Read what happens in this tense thriller.


6. 6

most of his work mates and he was always smiling. No one ever saw a sad look on his face. Seamus Webster the big happy go lucky Irishman was popular with everyone.

Seamus threw on a white tee shirt and his bib and brace overalls he took his own paint brushes and his wallpapering tools. He had made himself a fold away table so he could paste the rolls of paper ready for hanging. Seamus was so methodical; he measured every piece and numbered them so he knew exactly what went where. He was so quick and precise that to wallpaper a room took him less then half an hour once the paste was mixed and the paper cut using his own wallpaper scissors.

First though, he painted the ceiling.

“Just sing out if you would like a cup of tea said Sarah Slater as Seamus covered all the bedroom carpet with sheets to protect them before setting to work with a large flapper. He cut in all the edges first using a large Fitch then filled in the bigger areas with the flapper brush. Once that was done he set about papering. Sarah had chosen a nice yellow flowered pattern which was easy to match up. “There would be little waste he told Sarah; four rolls would do the job.’ When he’d finished Sarah brought him a large mug of tea then he set about painting the windows and bedroom door.

By nine o’clock the room was finished.

Seamus cleaned his brushes and collected the sheets that he’d brought.’

Sarah gazed at the job Seamus had done and smiled.

“What a transformation Seamus; you have done a splendid job.’

“Well don’t be shy now won’t you; tell all your friends and if they want anything done, you know like cupboards made. Fitted wardrobes; you name it and I’m your man for the job.

Thank you and we will; Andy came in and looked at the newly decorated bedroom.’

Splendid job Seamus; now how much do we owe you.’

Seamus would normally charge fifty pounds to do a room this size but because Andy was a mate from work he asked only for twenty.’

“Are you sure now Seamus said Sarah?’

“That’ll do me right enough.’

“Well thank you again.’

Seamus gathered up his tools then made his way out.

“I’ll see you tomorrow then mate.’

“You will; good night to you both.’

Seamus walked down the road to his house then went inside.’

“Can you run me a bath love asked Seamus as he put away his tools and sheets?’

He gave Brenda the twenty pounds and told her that he couldn’t charge friends more.’

Brenda stroked the dark curls on his head then kissed him. She went to the bathroom and put in the plug and ran her man a bath. Seamus was out most nights these days since the word had got out about his DIY skills. There were hundreds of lads in the yard all wanting his services. Seamus kept a book of the people who wanted jobs doing and he never turned down work’ even on a Sunday Seamus was out making a crust. He went to mass early then off he would go. Seamus was saving to buy himself a new car. He could drive and he’d left his old Ford Anglia to his brother Fergus when he left. He was sworn to secrecy. Not that Seamus had told his brother the location just in case the IRA got wind of his escape. His brother knew was that he was going to England and that he’d be in touch when he was settled. He then could tell his mother. When all the troubles were over Seamus said that he would return to Belfast but until then he would remain anonymous.

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