Saturday, February 18, 2006

Saddleworth is changing

Saddleworth is changing – bricks and mortar and people too

Of course Saddleworth is changing – everywhere is changing – it always has and it always will – it’s just that we don’t always notice some of the changes – and are powerless to stop them happening, for progress isn’t always for the better.

Returning home to Saddleworth every summer, I notice the changes more than I did when I lived right there in the middle of them.

Like a familiar face, you don’t notice the person getting older – so it is with places – Uppermill is so different from the 1960s when I went to school there – rushing in and out of The Square on my way along Rush Hill to school, pushing to get on the bus to take me back home to Lydgate – to a quick jam butty and a glass of milk before I dashed out on my paper round for Mr. Power, who kept the newsagent’s at the top of the hill at that time.

It certainly has changed since those days – the Commercial is still there, but the Milk Bar’s long gone, and other things have changed too.

As well as the buildings, habits and patterns of behaviour have also altered beyond recognition.  As the population grows, people grow more remote.  I remember in the Cloggers and down the hill in The Hare and Hounds, all age groups were catered for and enjoyed the evenings together.  

Who recalls Bill Hobson sketching his mates chucking ‘arrers’ in The Hare and Hounds?  Bill used to come in and tell us tales about when he was a signalman on the Delph Donkey (Delph Station to Oldham Mumps), and he used to sketch our likenesses – Peter Archer, myself, Graham Davis, Trevor Platt, Billy Lloyd, and a lot more that I can’t put a name to anymore, all served by Dot and Fred Oldfield.

I know it’s just nostalgia, just old memories, and good ones too, though that’s all they are for me, living such a long way from Uppermill and the days I love to remember every now and then.
Robert Fielding
Formerly of Lydgate and 5 Alpha at Saddleworth Uppermill Secondary Modern School with Fez and Dot Squash, but now in Al Ain. UAE.


At 11:45 AM , Blogger Nick said...

As I come from a different generation, I'm sorry that I missed the opportunity to see Uppermill of the 1960s, and can only catch glimpses of the history from stories and blogs like this.

The place is definitely changing and I just wonder if in 2046 somebody will blog that they remember good old 2006 - when the place used to have a butcher's on the corner and a baker's on the other. No doubt the approved development of a Tesco Supermarket in Greenfield will soon sadly see off the last of those good old fashioned local businesses.

But something tells me that even in forty years time, Saddleworth will still lag behind the surrounding urban development and be a tiny Yorkshire island of recent history.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home