I’M shortly to publish a memoir of experiences working on local newspapers, here in Blackpool, around Britain and overseas.
Only The Good News, as it’s entitled, is intended to be humorous and a tribute to characters met, odd places visited and customs rapidly receding into the past.
But today I wanted to share with you a little romance, rekindled while looking back into family history and unlikely to be re-enacted in modern times. However, it would have also been impossible for me to write an autobiography without it happening – back in the wartime 1940s.
It is said that romance is an elusive spirit, often met when least expected. My parents found it on the railway line, between Manchester and Liverpool.
“We first met on the station platform, at Urmston,” Mum told me when I was old enough to understand. “However, I hardly noticed him at the time.”
Not a very encouraging start, even my young mind noted. Neither was their situation hopeful. While future Mother was back then the daughter of a once-prosperous mill owner, young dad was a poorly paid railway porter. However, he had a trick up his sleeve – or under his arm.
“Your mother had left a ballgown in her compartment on the train,” he explained to me. “I managed to save it, but she’d left the station by then.”
Rather than chase after her, he had a better idea. He later went home, bathed and dressed up then took the gown round to her house. (Yes, he’d already discovered where that attractive girl lived).
“I was so pleased to get it back,” mum recalled, “as I was going to a ball at the dance hall that weekend. Your father said he was going too – and asked for a dance in thanks.”
They waltzed along happily for almost half a century.
* For Roy’s books, visit www.royedmonds-blackpool.com