The Ridgalite

The Rigalite focuses on the People who lived in Marina Avenue in the Ridges Estate in North Shields. Eddie Saint owns the Roaring venture a trawler moored at the fish quay- his crew work hard and play hard - one of them is Ron Lee a young lad who has aspirations of becoming a rock star. He was in the Royal Navy on board the HMS Illustrious as a trained chef before joining the trawler boat. The lads all tell him that his songs are crap because they don't wan't to lose a good cook. The story also tells of two rival shop keepers- Ronnie Hancock and Billy Burston have been each others throats for years- read the comic antics of both men. "The Ridgalite is an insite of life in the early sixties on an an estate with high unemployment and little hope - where every day is a constant struggle. There are some though who prove that if you have hope then dreams can come true.


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cleaner as he took out his comb from his jeans pocket and combed his hair. He reminded himself to visit Rudy Schreiber the barber next time he was in the town.

He placed the tee shirt and black sweater on then put on his socks and trainers. He cleaned out the bath then opened the window to let out the steam before closing the door and going down stairs.’

Hello Mrs Beck, I want to thank you for allowing me to use your bathroom.’

“You are welcome Douglas; would you like a drink?

Yes, please if you and Paula will have one with me.’

Minnie Beck expertly poured him a pint then opened a bottle of double maxim and then poured a glass of Wilkinson’s lemonade which was made locally.

Paula tells me that your boat is nearly finished;

“Just about Mrs Beck; I still have to find a crew though.’

“I will make some discreet enquiries for you if you like. I know the good one’s from the bad that get in here.’

I need a good engineer to begin with; we don’t want to break down at sea in bad weather.’

“Yes I understand. There is a man but he is Polish; speaks good English though and is a church going man. He is very polite and he lives in Dockwray Square. In fact if you hold on he should be in any moment. You can interview him over there in the corner where you will not be disturbed.

Thank you Mrs Beck.

Later that afternoon in walked a man and Minnie nodded in his direction as he walked to the bar and took off his cap.

Good day to you Mrs Beck and how are you today?’

“I am fine Basek; and how is your good wife?’

“She has had the flu but is recovering; she still went to church with me though.’

“Basek do you still seek work?’

Yes I have been making money by fixing cars, for a neighbour in his garage on the quayside. The pay is very little but it puts food on the table.

This is Douglas Cook he is going out with my daughter and is looking for a good engineer to help run his new boat. Is that something you would be interested in?

“Very much so Mrs Beck; I look for a permanent job.’

“Then why don’t you sit over in the corner and discuss business and I will bring you a nice cup of tea.’

“Hi I’m Douglas; but you can call me Dougie;

“Doogie;’ ah yes pleased to meet you Sir.’ My name is Basek Budny.

The little man held out his hand that was covered in oil stains. Dougie shook the hand and it was rough and calloused with years of hard work.

“How old are you Basek?’

“I am forty two sir, but I work hard for you.’

“What do you know about boats?

Fishing boats I grew up with; my father had a boat in Lebork near the Pomeranian coast in Poland. I spent most of my childhood fishing with my father. He taught me everything about engines and how to fix them.

Minnie Becks brought him his cup of tea with some milk and sugar and a piece of meat pie.’

There you are Basek, eat that, you look as though a gust of wind would blow you over.’

“Thank you Mrs Beck you are so kind to me.’

“God taught us to tend his flock Basek.’

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