' The Ragman's Serenade tells the story of four families- one from North Shields and the other three from Wallsend. It is a story of relationships- The Davis family are up to their eyes in debt - The Stewart family have a daughter who has downs syndrome– The hagarths who’s husband owns a bookmakers shop and his wife is a midwife at the RVI- and the Higginbottom's have a father with the on set of Alzheimer's. How do they cope - read this fascinating story i'm sure you will enjoy.


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Hi Alan, she says, what are you doing tonight, fancy a bit of fun.’

Whey my face must have turned seven different colours mate. I nearly shit myself.’

Here’s me twenty nine years old and a bloody school kid who looked about twenty five the night before in her make -up and short skirt and blouse.’

“Jail bait.’

“You’re telling me Norman.’ Never again though I ask for ID now.’

Norman had to laugh as the taxi pulled up outside.

“Can you pick me up later if you not busy Alan?’

“Whey aye, half eleven alright?’

“Aye that will be fine.’

“I’ll be waiting in the car park over the road for you.’

“Norman gave him five bob then went into the club and signed in before heading upstairs.  The club was packed as he expected but his long-time friend Barry Hodges

Was in keeping him a seat. He went to the bar and ordered to pints of exhibition then looked for his friend. He spotted him waving in the front net to the stage.

“You must have got here early said Norman as he set the two beers down on the table.’

“Thanks for the pint, aye, I got here about ten past seven but Malcolm Lothian kept a seat for me. He’s on the committee here.’

“Handy to know then.’

“Did you get a taxi down?’

“Aye, I won’t bring the car out Barry, I won’t drink and drive.’

“It’s alright I’ll jump into your taxi going home and I can get out at the Ridges Inn.’

“Have you heard the latest that bloody councillor is changing the name of the Ridges to the Meadowell.’

“The punters in the bar won’t like that.’

“Not the pub, I’m talking about the whole estate Norman.’

“What,’ is he daft?’

“Off his trolley mate, apparently all the street names are to change. It’s going to be a nightmare for taxi drivers and ambulance men.’

“There’ll be hell on after this, it will be chaotic, why does someone want to change everything for, it’s been alright since 1934.’

“Ours it not to reason why mate.’

Yeah,’ ours is but to do or die.’

After a spot by comedian George Roper they brought on a group which didn’t go down well with the older generation of club members who thought that they were too loud and outrageously dressed. They were pleased when they went off.

Norman got his eye on a man who came into the shop who owed him money. He seemed to be enjoying himself and had money as he stood at the bar ordering drinks

They called him “Next Week Watson” because whenever you asked him for the money he owed he would say “I’ll pay you next week.” Alfie Watson the fifty seven year old dock worker seemed to owe money to everyone. Norman excused himself and went over to the bar.

“Hi Alf, how you doing?’

“Alfie looked at Norman handed over a fiver to pay for the drinks then nodded at Norman.’

“Look Alf, I’ve given you enough time to pay me back that tenner you owe me now pay up.’

“Sorry Norm I’m a bit strapped for cash this week can I pay you next week.’

“No Alfie, I want it tonight you’ve had long enough.’

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