Welcome To Manchester Stories.

Below Are Extracts From The Guestbook, E-Mails and the Forum

If you want to contact anyone below, check out the guestbook for their E-mail address

Grab A Granny Night (Forum extract)

Christine, Friday night was Grab a Granny Night, because it was the end of the week and the lads went out on their own thinking they were God's gift, only thinking mind, and a lot of women used to go out with their mates to the Ritz, but the lads, thinking they, the women were desperate, yea right, were cruel, and used to call fridays Grab a Granny Night,

The Greyhound Chippy

Rezzanos cafe was more of a chippy it was called the Greyhound every Friday and Saturday people coming out of Belle Vue would go in there for pie and chips, there was a room you could eat in and if it was full you would eat yours on the way home, Johnie's Cafe on Chapel St, in Levenshulme also belonged to them. They also had an ice cream van I used to pal about with their daughter, many a free bag of chips I had off her mam and dad. I also used to pal out with Marion Day who lived on Mount Rd. I used to stay at her house. She had two brothers so we slept in the front room on a pull down, her Mam woudn't let you leave her house till you had a cup of tea and a jam butty. Her mam was a smashing woman, but very sadly she died when Marion was still in her teens. I also went in Sivs on Hyde Road facing the town hall on a Monday and Thursday night, which was club night, at the swimming baths just up the road, next to the wash house. Does anyone remember Marie, Big Woman in the baths who told you when to get in and when to get out, and Sam the little fella who I think was the caretaker? Don't recall any names that were mentioned though, I am a bit tired now or I could have told you a lot more, so cheerio marjorie

Marjorie 03/08/06

Many thanks Marjorie

Sunday 05/21/2006 5:45:03pm
Name: Ged Murphy
Brought Up? Gorton
Resident Now? Cheshire
Age: 72
Comments: Reading Marie Fernandez's comments brought back many memories for me, I too often wondered when some one would mention the excursion and troop trains that pulled up across Blackie Brook.The trains I understand changed crew's there hence the reason for stopping,the troop trains could be any time and any day,I only caught one but I had enough gum and chocolate to last me weeks, the excursion trains were usually on a Saturday taking families on thier holidays,we sang "Penny Down" and the money started raining down,the people on the train thought it was hilarious to see young kids scrambling in the dirt to pick the coins up.It was quite rewarding and I was planning to chuck my paper round,half an hour on the railway was much easier than lugging papers around the flats twice a day, but my dad had other ideas he banned me from the railway and that was that.
I have many fond memories of Gorton in those days especially my time at the swimming club and the Monastery Band,
about three years ago I went back to Gorton for a Monastery open day and I was saddened by what I saw I walked down Crossley street and stood on the spot where our house was and tried to see it as it was when I lived there but try as I may I could not visualise it,people say you should never go back as things are never the same,in this case it was certainly true.

Wednesday 05/17/2006 8:21:31pm
Name: Brian Pearce
Brought Up? Peel Green, Eccles
Resident Now? Hawarden
Age: 72
Comments: Further to my memory of "Der Wolf" U Boot at the end of WWII. Has anyone else shouted encouragement to American sailors/servicemen on their Liberty Ships and caught the oranges, apples, bananas and highly valued chewing gum etc they used to throw to us kids on the side of the Big Cut (the MSC) near Barton Bridge?
Boy could some of those sailors throw.MInd you we became expert catchers. I often wonder how many made it in their National Sport Baseball when they got back home after the War?
Wonderful how this Guest Book has awakened some long dorment memory cells.
Keep them coming folks. Terrific stuff.
Anyone reading this guest book ever go to "Godies C of E School" by the way and got pasted by Pop Lewis one of the greatest and forward thinking teachers I have had the fortune to be taught by?



Tuesday 05/16/2006 10:37:07pm
Name: Marie Fernandes
Brought Up? W.Gorton and Baguley Wythenshawe
Resident Now? Heywood, Lancs.
Age: 69
Comments: I remember reading a few weeks ago memories of Brook House and the Blackie Brook, from John Morgan. But up to date have seen no comments on the X-down train that used to pull in at Ashbury Station, West Gorton, and part of the train came over the water lodge that we called The Blue Dye. There were military from all the forces, including some American and Aussie soldiers. That area(The Blue Dye) was out of bounds to me and my parents would have gone mad if they had known I was there. Gangs of youngsters used to shout PENNY DOWN and the chaps used to lean out of the stationery carriages and throw money, chocolates and sweets to us. I am still waiting to see if anyone on Manmates remembers these antics.


In 1949, when I was 19, I had my first holiday at Butlins, Filey. The stage shows fascinated me and when I came home I looked for Theatres in Manchester.

The Hulme Playhouse was my first visit to the theatre; they put on plays performed by the Frank H. Fortescue players. I was amazed how this company could learn new lines and have scenery painted and present a new play every week. The title of the play I saw was ‘Laura’

Another theatre I found was the Hulme Hippodrome, on one of my visits to this variety theatre there was an act at the bottom of the bill which brought the house down, it was Hilda Baker.

Although not in Manchester was the Salford Hippodrome where I saw many variety shows. These smaller theatres had cheaper seats than the bigger ones in Manchester, in those days apprentices like myself did not come on full money until they were 21.

With best wishes,

Eric Jones 10/05/06

Hi Alan
I trust you are keeping well. I would just like to pass on some information to your readers/browsers - which may be of interest to them. I was on the Manchester Libraries Website regarding my schools and where I lived in Moss Side, and I cannot tell you how thrilled I was with the response I received from one of the Librarians there. She was kind enough to send me all the information I needed via email, and then she sent me on copies of the maps where my schools and house were by post. I was able to show my husband exactly where my old house was. It was wonderful. I have enlarged them and will laminate them this evening, and they will be there for years. I have sent her an email thanking her, however, I will write a letter to her and send her a thank you card. If you want to include this in your pages, please feel free to do so, and you may also include my email address odriscolltricia@yahoo.com.
Patricia O'Driscoll 09/05/06


Just a quick message to convey my deepest and heartfelt thanks for your wonderful site. I only discovered it three days ago - I became a member two days ago - and already, thanks to you, I have found an old schoolfriend from, would you believe, 1960.

Absolutely wonderful - thank you again !! If I can ever be of service to you in any way, I shall be more than pleased to be of assistance.


David M. Benjamin ("Benji") 01/04/06


Hi Robert,

Thank you very much for the email, also the information about the site www.manmate.co.uk, it has been great, I did as you said yesterday Sunday, I put a message on the guestbook, and today Monday I have had two replys, one from a
man that knows the family and he has sent me Junes.brothers address in manchester, the other one is a lady who seems to remember the name and is going to check it out and let me know. Robert is it also possible for me to put it in the reunion section to. do you know if you can get onto the Electoralroll site also Births .Deaths. Marrages. site in the UK. thank you very much for your help
Cheerio for now
Allister Jackson WA 13/03/06

02/08/2006 11:20:03am
Name: George Pointon
Brought Up? West Gorton
Resident Now? Abbey Hey Age: 56

Comments: Janet Noble, I think that you mean the blue dye off Textile Street, behind Brookhouse Flats. At the side was the Openshaw Brewery which was demolished in the early sixties, we collected from the site as many wooden beer barrels as we could for bonfire night and stowed them away on the roof of the janitors shed at the ends of the blocks in Compton House Flats. Unfortunately we couldn't leave well alone and made dens in the wood using the paraffin lamps from the roadworks as lights inside. We must have drove the locals mad as one night we climbed on the shed to find all of the wood gone, removed by the council workmen. It didn't deter us as we just started logging again, nobody could ruin our bommy night.On the Saturday there was an organised Bonfire at the Speedway Stadium and lo and behold all of our barrels and other gatherings were proudly in situ waiting for the lightermans torch. I often wonder how many pedestrians or drivers fell into the unlit diggings left blacked out because the little red paraffin lamps had mysteriously disappeared. Who remembers saving up for weeks in the Fireworks Club at the pot shop or local newsagents (and buying as many penny bangers and rip-raps as your pockets could carry)totally ignoring "The Fireworks Code".
George Pointon

Janet Noble
Brought Up?
Resident Now? Sarnia, Ontario. Canada
Age: 46
Comments: Great site and wonderful stories i lived off Clowes street (Gladstone St) I remember the red dye canal as a kid we had a tin bath for 6 kids. Loved going to Bellevue we were poor but had so much fun. Whit week walks and May day were my favorite days. Bags of crisps with little blue packs of salt in them we used to make our own lollies out of an old stick and swirl it in the tar on the road wait for it to harden and lick it.
Its nice to hear all the old stories that bring back memories and places forgotten.
Janet 04/02/06


Well, aren't you so very nice and helpful. Glad to have that Manch Eve News web site and will also forward it to my sister...originally we are both from Salford, and she went to Tootal Road....are you a Salfordite??? or should I say Salfordian???
Any interesting news about you. My sister was a very close friend of Albert Finney when he went to Salford Grammar....and her first marriage was to an Australian who attended Salford Tech.... then she divorced and came here to live near me in America...married an American and lived near in Pittsburgh for some time. Unfortunately (for me) they moved to California 15 years ago, altho luckily we manage to see them once or twice a year...and will see them when they visit here in May for the wedding of my eldest grand daughter.

She also was a great friend of Michael Riley, brother of Harold...and one of them came to live in California and they were in touch....I think it was Michael and he went back to England.

Many years ago Albert Finey starred for some months in LUTHER, on Broadway in New York City.....my sister wrote to him - didn't hear, and then several months later he phoned her - and she was invited to spend time as his guest in New York... at the time she wanted me to go too (one of my life's regrets but I had 3 small children and no close family to watch them, and so I opted not to go. She had a wonderful time with Albert and his staff...and found him very down to earth and still in touch with his roots, and also very humble about his celebrity status.

Thought you might find this of some interest.

I did receive 3 communications due to my message that I had put in Manchester Guardian IN TOUCH....AND AM DELIGHTED. The three persons and I very well remember each other and I am amazed at the one who remembers more about me than I do myself, she has a genius memory. I have spoken to her on phone for a couple of hours, and intend to get in touch with another friend whose phone number was sent to me. One lives in Dorset and the other in London....and the main contact who put me in touch lives in Lymm. I lost touch at the end of WW2 - Since at Pendleton High the students were from all over the county and a few from Salford, Broughton, and Stretford, so beyond attending school, and altho some of us great friend, we did not see each other after leaving school. I happened to be on a bus with one of my schoolmates before I came to U.S.A. She was waiting to go to New Zealand to marry a WW2 flier....and we did keep in touch all these years. I think however, she has only visited Enland once since she left, this via Canada and supposed to come and see us but had become ill on flight to Canada so we just spoke by phone. My husband offered to take me to Canada but I declined to go. (another regret)

Well - I don't know your age and stage....but thank you for all your help....nice hearing from you too.

joy 12/03/05


Bryan Capes

Where are all you Mostonians & Blackleyites? Remember the dances at Harpurhey baths? I lived in Moston near Broadhurst fields from 1937-1950, great times were had at Moston Fields school & North Manchester Grammar. The scouts at St. Peters church paraded along Market St.every month,how proud we were. Anybody remember these times?

Audrey and David Graham, City/Country: Childers Queensland Australia
Comments: What a find! Great site,brought back such wonderful memories.Loved the cinema stories. My husband and I met while working at the Tatton cinema Gatley ...Dave a projectionist ..myself an usherette..Remember too the Forum and the ABC miners club in Northenden also the Coronation flea pit! The likes of which I don't think we will see again.

Jack Clark; City/Country: Asheville, North Carolina USA

Comments: My favoite place in Manchester was the Ritz Dance Hall. I loved the music of the big bands,the revolving bandstand,but mostly, I remamber the wonderful people. I enjoyed dancing in Ashton-Under-Lyne on Monday nights. I was in the U.S. Air Force, and would like to hear from anyone who knew me. I was in England from September, 1951 to April, 1954

Anne Duncan, Detroit Michigan

Comments: Hi, Great site. Does anyone remember the Garabaldi pub in Abbey Hey? It was on Lees St. I remember having many a good night there. I used to frequent the place in 1979. I remember the landlady, Ruth and her husband Frank. At the weekenk they used have a disco. There used to be character there called Johnny Rocko. He would sing and was comical guy. Happy days..!
Many thanks to the webmaster for this site. It has brought back many happy memories

Sheila Thompson (Nee Hall), City/Country: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. (Since 1971)
Comments: Hi Guys, This is a great site and brings back lots of memories. I attended St.Willibrords, Clayton, M/cr. and lived in Homebury Drive, Clayton. I would love to see some old pictures of this area, as our's got lost over the years. Keep up the good work.

John D Morgan,City/Country: Pontypool, SE Wales
Comments: Born St Mary's Manchester, Oct 1936 went to Armitage Street school West Gorton/Ardwick , then Thomas Street West Gorton. plus others as family moved about a lot. Lived in Brooke House flats West Gorton. Pals with Tony Sinacola, Frankie Hart( he married Pat Harrison) amongst others, Where is Mavis Slater and brother John?ex Hartland Gardens, west Gorton.
Age: 61-70

Peter Jones, Manchester,

Comments: Does anyone remember at Wright Robinson High
School the games teachers making us run round
the stone wall and giving stick to any lads
that came near the back?

Teddy Knott, Manchester.


Belle Vue Aces speedway team of 1963 was one of the best in their history, that season was one of success and tragedy, Peter Craven died from injuries he sustained at Edinburgh in September of that year when he swerved to avoid a fallen rider (George Hunter of Edinburgh Monarchs) Dent Oliver was the team manager at the time and only 12 months earlier Peter had won The World Crown at Wembley. See the photo

Sent in from Mary Howerth by E-mail

I was very interested to see the photograph on your Speedway page. I knew Peter Craven & Dick Fisher very well.
I actually had a ride round the track, on the back of Dick Fisher's bike.
I was in Johnnie's Marching Girls, 1954/55. Johnnie Hoskins formed us. We were kind of mascots for the Aces. We marched at the beginning, the inteval, and right round the track at the end. We wore very short pleated skirts Red tops with gold buttons all down the front, & epulates on the shoulders. A small cap with the speedway colours on it, and an ace on the front. Also white boots. I was also in The Storming Of Quebec. A show on the firework island. All the ATC Lads who did the track were in it. And hundreds of others. From mostly Gorton.
I was devastated when Peter was killed. He was the best rider I ever saw. He had a mop of red curly hair. He was a lovely person.
Well I hope you like that bit of information about the Speedway.
Best Wishes.

Anne Duncan, City/Country: Detroit Michigan

Hi, Great site. Does anyone remember the Garabaldi pub in Abbey Hey? It was on Lees St. I remember having many a good night there. I used to frequent the place in 1979. I remember the landlady, Ruth and her husband Frank. At the weekenk they used have a disco. There used to be character there called Johnny Rocko. He would sing and was comical guy. Happy days..!
Many thanks to the webmaster for this site. It has brought back many happy memories
Age: 41-50

Peter Jones, Manchester
Comments: Does anyone remember at Wright Robinson High
School the games teachers making us run round
the stone wall and giving stick to any lads
that came near the back?

Name: Joanne, Manchester, England
Comments: I really enjoyed looking at this website
especally the walk down memory lane. I was
surprised to find out that John Thaw was from

Janet Cooke, City/Country: Warrington
Comments: Just added a reunion date to your page, am hoping that the word will get around. Thanks for letting me use your fab website.

Ron maguire City/Country: ipswich qld australia
Comments: great site i used to run the vic on hyde road, also worked at elis,s pies many years ago. good luck with the site its a good way of saying hello.regards ron
Age: 61-70

Morris Globe City/Country: Manchester/England
Comments: I am looking for anyone from Heath St. Secondary Modern who remembers me. I left in December 1952. It would great to hear from you.
Age: 61-70

Al Barlow City/Country: Perth, Western Australia.
Comments: What a great site for expats,!
I am searching for any information about
my brother in law, Stephen Grime,m DoB 1955,Steve has been Missing since 1996
any person with information, please Email Me, Many thanks Manchester.
Age: 61-70
Louise Woolstencroft City/Country: Wellington, New Zealand
Comments: I used to live in Firswood, Manchester, and i'm looking for my Father John Barry Woolstencroft (Known as Barry).He was living in Chorlton-cum-Hardy 5 years ago, and now ???
If anyone knows where he is please contact me.
Age: 31-40

Ann Callaby City/Country: Norfolk UK
Comments: Thanks for the opportunity to maybe find a friend of a friend who lives in Perth Western Australia. Joyce Melia (and her husband John) would dearly like to make contact with JOYCE ROSS (maiden name).They all lived in Ardwick in the 50's and 60's.I too, come from Ardwick although I left in 1958 and moved finishing up in Burnage from where I emmigrated to Oz. Back in the UK for over 25 years now although regularly still visit parents (Frank and Frances Cutts)and siblings (Frank & Lillian Cutts) in Oz.
Great site, brings back a lot of happy memories.

Age: 51-60

Sami Garshoni City/Country: Maryland- USA
Comments: Hi- I left Manchester 23 yrs ago to live in US. After a while I lost touch with a very dear friend named, Louise A.Melsom. I am hoping to find her thru your site after all these yrs.
Age: 41-50
Margaret Coates (nee Normyle) City/Country: Manchester, Lancashire.
Comments: I have just found this page, I hope to get in touch with any Mancunians who remember me, I went to Yew Tree Central school 1941 to 45, I have fond memories of my time there, I now live near Lancaster. Would like to hear from anyone from Wythenshaw, Northenden
or any near places.
Age: 71-80
Comments: Recently found this site, think its great. I played football in or around Wythenshawe from 1958 to 74, for teams such as Park Ave, Park Celtic, Cock o the North, Airport Hotel & AEI Wythenshawe. I`d love to hear from anyone who remembers me. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK BOB PHILIPSON
Age: 61-70

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Updated: 22/05/2006

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