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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There was a double sized oven and a range of copper bottomed pans all hanging up neatly. There was also set of knives in a maple block in the corner and there was plenty of cupboard space.

He put on the coffee percolator and it began to bubble away. “Have you eaten Helen, because with rushing around trying to sort out my dad’s funeral I didn’t have time to eat this morning and I’m starving?’

“Actually I haven’t eaten breakfast either.’

“Good you just sit back and relax and I will cook us something nice to eat.’

“How about a full English?’

“That would be nice she said as she watched him through the through the opening. Jim put on an apron and then washed his hands as he set out some bacon medallions some pork sausage and two pork chop’s onto a stainless steel tray. Once the oven was lit he waited until it was hot enough then placed the stainless steel tray into the oven. He brought her coffee through on a tray and gave her a spoon to put in some Demerara sugar and real cream.’

“Thank you James I’m well impressed. How many bedrooms does it have?’

“Just two but it’s all that I need.’ Mind you they are very large rooms compared with the ones in the Ridges.

“May I take a look?’

“Be my guest.’

Helen went into the first room all the doors had long wooden handles with brass plates; the doors were all painted white.’

Inside there was lovely wallpaper on the walls with what looked like swifts or swallows the bed had a purple coloured duvet and matching pillows the main sheet was white the king sized bed had a wooden frame that had come from Sweden.

“Such a big bed for one person said Helen.’ And you are right the rooms are large.’

“I had fitted wardrobes made as well if you just pull that door along.

Helen pulled the handle and the door opened like a concertina.

 Inside there were hanging several suits, with compartments for shoes which he had black and brown coloured all placed neatly inside- if you pull those drawers open there you will see more space. They are for my shirts and there’s another for my ties.

“I like the large mirror that you have.’

“I have a seat on the other side so you can fix up your hair if need be.’

“You’ve thought of everything haven’t you?’

“Wait until you see the size of my bath and shower room.’

Jim led Helen to the bathroom and her eyes were taken in by the soft peach coloured tiles on the wall. The floor had cream coloured tiles. There were matching pink and cream towels hanging on a rail. James even had a cream coloured terry towelling bathrobe hanging on the door.

The glass shower was big enough to hold four people inside. “This must have cost you a fortune Jim.’

“I know a few men in the trade, who done it fairly cheaply for me.’

“It’s amazing.’

“Come through and I will serve you some breakfast or is it dinner; I don’t know which.’

“Brunch; that’s what it’s called James.’

“You will have to keep me right Helen he said nervously.’

He popped some bread into a toaster then turned down the heat on a tin of beans and some mushrooms in a frying pan. Taking out two matching dinner plates from the cupboard he set them onto the bench and began to plate up the food.

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