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Fairgrounds in the Good Old Days

Fairgrounds in the good old days

Fairgrounds have been popular in Britain since we can remember. We still love go go to the fair, but in the good old days a trip to the fairground was a real treat. We loved to hear the sounds; the children laughing and the music blasting out of speakers. We can remember the smell of the generators which sharply contrasted with the sweet aroma of candy floss and donuts. In the good old days, there was something at the fairground for everyone, whether you were knocking cans off a shelf, sliding down the Helter-Skelter, or trying not to be sick on the Waltzer. The fairground was a special treat that filled residents with anticipation and excitement once a year. Take a look at some of our best fairground photographs from our nostalgia books.

hull fair in the 1950s take a ride into outer space courtesy of the meteorite  (1)
The Meteorite ride at Hull Fair in the 1950s took the passengers on a ride into outer space! (Or nearly!) Photograph taken from our More Memories of Hull nostalgia book: More Memories of Hull
easter tombland fair norwich mid 1950s. you may recall the noise; vivid colours%2c smell of gnereators which sharply contrasted with the sweet aroma of candyfloss and toffee apples.
A busy Easter Tombland Fair, Norwich, in the Mid 1950s. Photograph taken from our Norwich, The Golden Years publication.
Whitsuntide Fair, Birley Street, Preston c.1948x2
Whitsuntide Fair, Birley Street, Preston, 1948. From our Preston nostalgia selection.
PleasureBeachand fairground southport and the ever so popular dodgems
Pleasure Beach and Fairground in Southport. You can see the ever so popular dodgems in the photograph. Taken from our Memories of Southport book.
wakes week fair in oldham ear%3by 1950s
Mayor of Oldham enjoys the Merrry-Go-Round at Wakes Week Fair, Oldham in the early 1950s. Photograph can be found in our Memories of Oldham nostalgia book.
Bury Fair in the 60s
Lovely photograph of a merry-go-round for the little ones, at Bury Fair in the 1960s. Photograph taken from our Bury selection of books.
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Yorkshire Nostalgia


Places to visit in Yorkshire for some reight good old nostalgia!

Yorkshire. Eee by gum. Yorkshire. Renowned for its Yorkshire puddings & gravy, its delightful tea and, of course, we can’t forget its reight friendly and down t’earth inhabitants. Like me! So what else is there in Yorkshire? Where do you go if you want to revisit the past, relive memories, get t’bottom of some good old Yorkshire ‘eritige? I’ve gathered together a list of 10 nostalgic things to do in th’land of Yorkshire for those of you looking for a bit of nostalgia and history. And hopefully a day trip to one of these places will leave you with even more happy memories. Get yer cuppas ready and yer pies out. We’re off.

  • 1. Leeds: Lovely Leeds. Home of the much loved Marks and Spencer, the splendid County Arcade and let’s not forget, Leeds United Football Club! Want some Leeds heritage? Well, on the theme of Marks and Spencer, today I’d recommend the Marks and Spencer’s Heritage trail. The trail takes visitors to heritage points across the city, from the Marks and Spencer’s original market stall at Kirkgate to the unique Marks in Time Exhibition at the Marks and Spencer’s archive. An amazing opportunity to see the sites of Leeds through the eyes of Marks and Spencer!

    county arcade mid 1960s leeds
    County Arcade, Leeds, Mid 1960s
  • 2. Halifax: Halifax is full to the brim of industrial landmarks and places to visit. The best place to visit in Halifax, in my humble Yorkshire opinion, is the Piece Hall, which is currently closed due to an incredible transformation that will be open for the world to see in 2016. The Piece Hall is a must-see heritage site and a bit of a hidden gem in the town of Halifax. It originally opened in 1779 as a market place for textile trading and has since become a lovely little cobbled area with the same delightful historical architecture, containing unique shops and cafes. The new transformation will be filled with tasteful shops, cafes and a history interpretation centre! Intrigued?  I certainly am.

    Walking through the cobbled streets of Halifax
    Walking through the cobbled streets of Halifax
  • 3. York: With the York Dungeons, the Jorvik Viking museum and its endless array of monumental and historical buildings, York is one of those places you must visit if you are interested in heritage, British history & nostalgia. One thing you must do, is visit the York Minster, one of the most fantastic cathedrals in the world. Climb the central tower. The climb will be long but you’ll be greeted with outstanding views of York from the top. Absolutely beautiful. I very much doubt you’ll be disappointed in the York Minster expedition.

    Aerial View of York, 1959
    Aerial View of York, 1959
  • 4. Wakefield: Another industrial city with many interesting historical sites, Wakefield is home of the Yorkshire Sculpture park, the fascinating Wakefield museum and various castles and old battlegrounds. What do I recommend mostly? The National Coal Mining Museum. Do you really want to experience and re-live some history? Get yer sen t’coal mining museum! Travel 140 metres underground and get a feel for mining in one of Britain’s oldest mining museums. So interesting and so much fun!

    Horse Drawn Buses in Wakefield, 1905
    Horse Drawn Buses in Wakefield, 1905
  • 5. Barnsley: Recognised as another industrial town, well known for glass making and coal mining, Barnsley is proper Yorkshire a’ tell thee! With its 700-year-old market and its beautiful architectural town hall, (now a museum), Barnsley is a lovely place to visit with the family. For the most lovely of days out with yer’ bairns, visit Cannon Hall in Barnsley… A stunning hall with a charming farm filled with sheep and pigs and goats. Cannon Hall even has llamas. True Yorkshire style!

    Outdoor Market, Barnsley, Exact date unknown.
    Outdoor Market, Barnsley, Exact date unknown.
  • 6. Haworth: The lovely town in Yorkshire where The Railway Children was set, and home to the Bronte sisters (writers of Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights). Such an idyllic place to visit, with its cobbled streets, dinky cafes, and shops such as Mrs Beighton’s sweet shop, which is filled with tasty nostalgic treats like sweet tobacco and pear drops. Just talking about the sweetshop makes my mouth water for the tastes of sweet nostalgia. The really unique thing to do in Haworth is to visit the Keighley and Worth Railway station, which opened in 1867. You get to ride on a train and get a true feel for how things were on the trains in days gone by. It’s one of those places that manages to transport you back to the era of the Bronte sisters without much effort. 100% nostalgia. 100% love it.

    Bus on Skipton road, Keighley, near Haworth
    Bus on Skipton road, Keighley, near Haworth
  • 7. Hull: Hull is the 2017 city of Culture and I think this is well deserved! Hull has lots to offer, from its dock and harbour to its its old town brimming with medieval churches and fascinatingly built buildings, with pubs like The White Heart and the Old Black Boy, which are rich with history and heritage, there is always something to do in Hull which invites you to re-live history and feel nostalgic in some way. You can visit William Wilberforce’s house or take a trip on ‘The Larkin Trail’, which takes you on a journey through Hull in the eyes of the poet, Philip Larkin. Hull, another city, which is wildly underrated and deeply rich in history.

    Beatles film in Hull.
    Beatles film in Hull.
  • 8. Sheffield: Sheffield. Land of the Steel. And a very popular northern city for many, a city that grew wonderfully in the industrial revolution, and although it is an up and coming, popular city for young people, Sheffield still keeps the memories of its past alive through various attractions that give visitors a chance to get a feel for what took place in Sheffield in yesteryear.  The Sheffield Museums Trust runs three museums, Kelham Island Museum, Abbeydale Industrial Hamlet and the Shepherd Wheel, which all produce various history workshops and exhibitions. Do Not Miss the Victorian Festive Market at the Kelham Island Museum on the 5th 6th December this year. I’ll see you there. sheffield fargate in 1950s (1)
  • 9. Whitby: Ah the chuffin’ lovely Whitby with its unbelievable fish ‘n’ chips, the exquisite Whitby abbey overlooking the sea and its picturesque shops and cafes. What a town! The Whitby churchyard is the setting where the ‘Dracula’ novels were based, so it is often thought of as an old gothic town, therefore has various gothic themed activities such as a ghost walk at night-time and Dracula’s experience on the main strip. So much fun and sooooo bloomin’ gorgeous! There are even arcades in Whitby, if you are feeling truly nostalgic for some 2p gambling! If you haven’t been to Whitby – go!

    Beautiful Whitby
  • 10. Hebden Bridge: Another idyllic setting in the North Of England providing canal cruises, cobbled streets and a general ‘mood’ of creativity. The town was home to the poet, Sylvia Plath, who is buried in the graveyard in Heptonstall, a tiny village above Hebden Bridge, (another place you must visit if you are nearby). Another activity you might enjoy in Hebden Bridge, if you are feeling nostalgic, is a visit to the Hebden Bridge Picture House, opened in 1921. Its old architecture and its interior design still emit that strange but calming feeling of memories and past, while it remains in the now. You can even get a cup of tea before you go in! Hebden Bridge, a lovely day out in Yorkshire.

    Shot of Hebden Bridge
    Shot of Hebden Bridge
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The Queen becomes the longest reigning British Monarch!

On Wednesday 9th September 2015, Queen Elizabeth ll at the age of 89 became the longest reigning British Monarch. Let’s take a look at some of her best moments so far.

1926 The gorgeous baby Elizabeth was born.

1936 Elizabeth had no expectation of her father becoming King. But one event led to another, and in 1936 after the abdication of his brother, King George IV became a rather reluctant King. Princess Elizabeth was now in line for the throne.

1940 At the age of 14, in the midst of the war, a rather inspirational Princess Elizabeth gave her first radio broadcast  giving reassurance to young people across the country.

1947  Elizabeth married Prince Philip of whom she met when she was only 13! They went on to have two children, Charles and Anne. 

1952 In 1952 Elizabeth became Queen. Her coronation in 1953 was the first televised coronation, and was watched by so many people across the country. Did you watch it?

1976  The Queen Elizabeth went on her first trip to Canada for the opening of the Olympics.

1977 A year later and it’s the silver jubilee. And it marked the perhaps start of the Queen’s all-in-one rather colourful outfits.

1997 The beautiful Princess Diana, the Queen’s daughter in law, died in 1997. Elizabeth and Diana had always had a rather complicated relationship and this was a very significant & sad time for the royal family, the Queen herself, and the country.

2002 Within two months of each other, the Quesn’S mother and sister, Princess Margaret passed away. This was great loss for Queen Elizabeth after losing her father so long ago.

2012- Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee.

2015 – Hello today. 63 years and 7 months later and the Queen is Britain’s longest reigning monarch, and still sporting those fantastic all-in-one colour outfits!

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The Incredible Power of Nostalgia

jumping for joy on vj day in leeds town hall women dancing (1)

The Incredible Power of Nostalgia

“Nostalgia is much more than mere reminiscing; it’s a feeling. “Nostalgia is the warm, fuzzy emotion that we feel when we think about fond memories from our past… It often feels bittersweet – mostly happy and comforting, but with a tinge of sadness that whatever we’re remembering is lost in some way.” text above comes from this wonderful article in The Huffington Post, by Jeanette Leardi. The article discusses the benefits of nostalgia, how nostalgia can help to connect people and give them a feeling of being loved when they are lonely, that’s if they use nostalgia in the right ways.

Sometimes it can be so easy to sit and get lost in old photographs, old diaries and old letters from when you were young. What this article questions is how beneficial is this process? Is it therapeutic to reminisce? Does it help you to relive what once was, through reminiscing?

Our books absolutely link to this idea of the benefits of nostalgia and reminiscing. and we have had heaps of positive feedback regarding the books and the effect they have on the reader. One reader said, ‘It was as though I was walking through my old town at the age of 8. I could almost remember my outfit on that day, the smells that came out of the bakery as I walked past. So many memories came flooding back by looking at one photograph.’