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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pocket. He ran to the nearest post office then cashe Walking through Scott’s Allan Forster went to sign on at the new Social Security offices. Dressed in a pair of scruffy Jeans with holes in both knees and torn wrangler jacket kept especially for this occasion. He walked in and stood in the queue.

When it came to his turn he approached the desk. The woman looked at him with distain as he told her that he had just been released from Durham Prison.

“Mr Forster she said looking at him through a pair of half mooned spectacles attached to a chain. “ Have you done any work in the last seven days?’

“I’ve just told you I just got out at 7 am this morning; so to answer your question no, I have not done any work.’

She took out a card and he signed it. The woman got up from her seat got and walked to the back where she spoke to her superiors. When she returned she handed him a giro cheque.

“You will be looking for work Mr Forster won’t you?’

“Well I cannot look for work wearing these can I.’ he stood back so she could see the holes in his jeans and his torn jacket.

“Do you not own a suit?’

“Are you kidding, I’ve been out of work for three years can’t get a job because I’ve been in nick that many times. How am I going to get money for a suit and shoes and a decent shirt and tie?’

“Just one moment Mr Forster whilst I go and check you may be entitled to a clothing grant.’ The woman left the cubicle again then stood talking as he looked down at the giro he had for seventeen pounds twelve and sixpence. He knew that he was entitled to a clothing grant. He got one every time he got out of jail. He never had the intension of looking for work but the money would get him out on the drink, buy some fashion clothes, and help him get his leg over in the Jungle bar.

The woman returned and he again had to sign a form then she handed him another giro cheque for £50.00

“Thank you he smiled.’

“You must report to this office next Wednesday at 11am we will then send you for interview; do you have a trade?’

“Allan refrained from saying yes,’ I’m a qualified burglar.’ Instead he said “I worked at Thor Tools on the coast road.’

“Why did you leave your place of employment?’

“Er, I was caught taking some of the tools home and they sacked me on the spot.’ “I was only borrowing them.’

“What have you done since leaving Thor Tools?’

Allan wanted to say that he’d broken into Welch’s toffee factory and Charlie Clay’s clothing factory and numerous other places; but replied that no one would employ him because of his criminal past.’

“I see,’ leave this with me and I will make some calls on your behalf. If we find you a job will you promise to go to interview?’

“Oh absolutely, I want to work.’

“Good; now go and get yourself a suit, shoes, and a white shirt, and tie. You have to make a good impression at interview.’

“Oh I will Mrs Olwin said Allen reading her name from a badge she wore.’

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