EBB AND FLOW

"Ebb and flow" which is centred around the Charley Clays Clothing Factory during the early sixties. The story focuses on different kinds of life in North Shields at that time - There's Helen Smith the young woman who dreams of a better life for herself, she wants to live like the rich people. When she marries Thomas Lattimer who is a wealthy banker she discovers that the life that she wanted is not all it was made up to be. Jimmy Mulligan who works for Hoults the butchers, lives over the road with his parents he has been in love with Helen since they were at school together. He tells her of his love and that he will wait for her no matter how long it takes. Allan Forster has been in and out of Borstal for petty crimes he dreams of one big job that will net him enough money to live the high life - He gets involved with Paddy Leonard a notorious hardman. A power struggle takes place in North Shields for supremacy. Paddy Devlin another bouncer, come gangster is running a protection racket

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17. 17

“I will have you know that I’m a right posh bird me said Edith putting on as posh an accent as possible with her mouth full of chips.’

“Aye and yer Ganny is the bloody Queen of England an aal.’

Dave Cox came out after being served walking to wards them looking rather unsteady on his feet.

“You’ve had a canny sup by the looks of you said Anne.’

“No more than the usual replied Dave.’

“And how many would that be?’

About Dave put up both hands and began counting off the pubs that they had been in.’

“To be honest pet I lost count after we got to the Spring Gardens.’ “Have you walked all the way from there?’

“It’s not that far really.’

“It is the way you are walking; you look as if you are going to fall down at any minute.’

“I wobble a bit cos’ I’ve only got one peg.’

“Edith looked down then it dawned on her that Dave was right he only had one leg.’

“What happened?’

“I was working down the yards as a welder and a lump of steel plate fell on it. The bone was crushed so badly that they had to take it off just below my knee.’

“Are you still working down there asked Edith to the stocky looking lad who was around five feet seven. His hair was straight and was longer than Eric’s he had a fringe and his sideburns came down to his jaw line. He wore a pair of leather patched jeans that looked like they needed a good wash and a black leather Jacket with a picture of Jimi Hendrix on the back

“No,’ I drive the green buses now.’

“What, with only one leg?’

“Whey aye.’

“It’s a wonder the bus hasn’t crashed.’

“Crashed, I’m the worlds best driver me.’

Anne got up and they all began to walk towards Bridge Road North.

They passed Billy Burston’s and Ronnie Hancock’s shops before crossing over.

The girls disposed of their newspaper that their supper was wrapped up with; they put it in the waste bin as they then walked up the road.

“Where do you work then Eric, asked Betty to the young lad with shoulder length hair that was naturally curled unlike her own? He had sideburns that came down past his ears. He wore a red shirt and a blue coloured waistcoat and blue flares with black leather boots that had a four inch heel which made him look taller than he really was.

“That hair of yours is wasted on a man said Shirley. You should get it cut and sell it to the wig makers.’

“Why when I like it myself.’

“I work for Charley Clay’s on Norham Road, do you know it?’

“The girls all burst out laughing.’

“What’s funny, “I work in the packing bay not on the sewing machines you know.’

“We all work on the machines in Charley Clays said Anne with a smirk on her face.’

“Really,’ it’s a small world aye.’

They came to Briarwood Avenue then crossed the road again.

“Are you girls up for going out tomorrow night with us?’ “I have two brothers who would love to go out with you two.’

“What do they look like asked Anne?’ 

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