Roseworth – A Winter Wonderland

Thanks to Richie Bateman for allowing use of this photo.

Richie is not sure about any of the people in this photo apart from himself, he is the leftmost of the children, between Richie and his sister they believe that the girl second from left is Mary Thompson and the fourth to be their brother John.

They think it would have been taken in the late 1950s but can’t imagine who by as they didn’t know of anybody who owned a camera.

Their only certainty is that it was taken in Ruislip Close in Roseworth.

This is how I remember my childhood, sometime in the late 1950s the kids in our close built what started out to be an Igloo and finished up looking like a Tepee, we rolled large snowballs into a circle and added more on top until we had an Igloo shape, we then threw piles of snow on top to give it height, two things I remember about that edifice were Herbie Ollett trying to run over the top and falling and breaking his leg, and the fact that the heap of snow was still evident long after the thaw.

If anybody recognises any of the people in the photo please let me know and I will sent the information to Richie.

Photo and details courtesy of Richie Bateman / Bruce Coleman

He left Stockton a young lad and came back in uniform

A little bit of Stockton history. In 1928 a family emigrated from Stockton and they were hoping to start a new life in Canada. The head of the family was Bill Hall with his wife Mary (nee Connor) and their young son called Billy. They finished up in a town called Sawyerville in the French speaking province of Quebec.

Billy wasn’t an only child for long as between them Bill and Mary had 11 children. In the 1980s we were told that family members could be found in every province of Canada. Before she left Stockton in 1928 Mary had her photograph taken with two of her sisters. Facing the camera on the left is Nora, Mary is in the centre with Betty sitting down.

The girls never expected to meet again but they did as Mary visited the area many years later in the 1960s. Mary was a great crafter and won many prizes in the local Cook County show.

The years went by and in 1944 young Billy Hall returned to the UK but this time in uniform. He must have cut a dashing figure as a member of the Royal Canadian Airforce. He was determined to do his bit for the old country.

In 1969 Billy, his wife and youngest daughter made a visit to this area. I met them and they all seemed very pleasant. We made several trips to the Billingham Bowl with them as they were very keen on ten pin bowling.

Photos and details courtesy of Martin Birtle.

William Coleman

This is the only photo I know of which shows my paternal Grandfather William Coleman, he is at the front centre of the main group, he has his foot on the support timber and his hands on the brake rope.

Group of manual labourers on a cable pulling job

I never knew my Grandfather, he died in 1941, before I was born, my Father never spoke of him and my Mother never met him.

In the 1939 Register his occupation was given as ‘General Labourer & French Digger’. I Googled French Digger and it is somebody who specialises in digging trenches, that would follow as the cable looks to be going into a trench.

30 years or so after this picture was taken I was part of a gang doing the same job, excepting the cable we pulled in went up and across a roof in a steel mill in Scunthorpe.

30 years on again I was once again involved in a cable pulling job, but this time I had commissioned the job and I stood and watched, much better.

These lads wouldn’t win any prizes for sartorial elegance, but I wasn’t dressed any better when I was involved in my cable pulling experience.

I was wondering if this cable was a new feeder for the upcoming electric welding, it would need a cable of that size for such a job.

My Father started work as an apprentice riveter in the shipyard in 1939 and moved into steel erecting in the early 1960s as the need for riveters waned.

Photo and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman

John Nicholson, Norton Road, Stockton

I have just found this photo of my dad, Roy Miller with colleagues. He is on the bottom left. I’ve tried to find out when this grocery warehouse closed down. I was told he was transferred to Leeds when he moved there in 1965 from Norton, but I suspect it may have been a porkie!

My dad was a manager there – this photo is obviously a Tobler promotion – he used to get perks from reps like boxes of free wagon wheels! But the days of supermarkets were taking over so small grocery warehouses faded away.

Can anyone supply names of the others on the photo? The warehouse was next to Major St. The Edwardian terrace is still there. They used to have a separate ‘Sweet Warehouse’ near the Commercial Tavern, and staff sometimes had a ‘liquid lunch’ there!

I don’t know if any of the men on the photo was John Nicholson himself – I do remember one the men he worked with was Mr Blenkinsop – known as ‘Blenk’.

Photo and details courtesy of Mandy Wood

Furness Cup & Windsor Street School

Photo one is of a chap called Bill Bowker holding the Furness cup. I can find no other information other than his name on the back of the photo stating he is holding the Furness Cup.

Photo two simply states Windsor Street School football team. A school I know to be in Haverton Hill but no date, and also no names. Perhaps your wider, more knowledgeable audience may have some answers?

Photo and details courtesy of Neil Cushin.

Joseph Norman Kidd

We’ve had some more sad news sent to us about another much valued contributor to this website. Joseph Norman Kidd passed away on 16th November aged 92 years. Over many years he contributed to the archive with stories of people and events, particularly related to the railway, that he experienced during his time living in Norton-on-Tees.

Our condolences go to his wife Joyce who told us the news and wished us all well in continuing to share people’s memories on Picture Stockton.

Here is a photograph first sent to us in 2007 showing Private J. Norman Kidd, No. 4 Squad, A Company, DLI Army Cadets, with a link to the original post where Norman shared his recollections of his time in the cadets.

Granville Cooper

We’ve had some sad news sent to us from Ben Brown about one of our regular contributors, Granville Cooper:

Sadly I wish to report of the death of a well known Teesside Sportsman Granville Cooper who has contributed many articles to this site over the past years.

Gran as we all knew him died aged 86 years after a mammoth battle with leukemia over the last ten years. Gran died in Bristol on Saturday 14th November. He was a one of the longest surviving sufferers of this very debilitating disease.

Gran has posted many articles on this site over the years. He was a top class centre forward playing for Billingham Synthonia and and Whitby Town for many seasons, being top scorer at Whitby Town during his stay there. In later years he played for Head Wrightsons in a very successful Teesside league team. During his National Service in the Royal Air Force he was stationed in Singapore where he won the player of the year award for the top league.

Gran served his apprenticeship at Head Wrightson Stockton Forge as a template maker and graduated to a draughtman position before embarking on a career of Construction Management. Gran was Construction Manager for BP and Foster Wheeler for many of the European major projects in his position as Construction Manager and on several occasions had the prestigious position of introducing the Queen to the top people of many successful projects. At times his staff numbered over 2500 employees. Gran is a shining example of what local talent can achieve with the right sort of attitude to their careers.

He will be sadly missed. RIP Gran Cooper.

Granville Cooper meets the Queen in Cologne , 1992.

Greg Cooper, Granville Cooper’s son, has also sent us these lovely photographs to accompany this post.


On the Buses and in Woolworths

My uncle, Jack Bailey, is the conductor shown in this photograph. He was born in 1905 and worked, ”on the buses” from aged 14, when he started as a tram conductor, until his retirement as a bus inspector, as did his older brother Frank and younger brother Billy.

Supervisors from Woolworths in Stockton. My mum, Eileen Southall (nee Bailey) is the lady on the right. This would have been taken in the early 1950s in the Parish Gardens. The ladies’ very smart uniforms were made by my grandmother Lillie Bailey.

Photographs and details courtesy of Jan Hemblade.

King George V Coronation 1911

This “Coronation” picture has me puzzled, does anybody have any idea about what could be happening, there are an awful lot of people, all men, standing around a bus, there are far too many to all get aboard.

Also there are no signs of street decoration that normally accompany such events, the only thing I am sure of is the pickup point was in the high street outside the alleyway leading to the Blue Post Hotel. Judging by the way the men are dressed I would say that 1911 is a very likely date for the picture.

Photograph and details courtesy of Bruce Coleman.