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Sunday, 20 April 2014

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World away from her favourite snowdrops

TODAY’S contribution comes all the way from New South Wales in Australia from Barrovian Irene Oakes.

Mrs Oakes now lives in Ferndale and has been in Australia with husband Jim for more than 30 years but was brought up in Parker Street, Barrow.

She wrote a short poem having enjoyed the Evening Mail book on pubs and breweries called Local Life and Echoes of Hindpool by Darren Gardner.

The first letter of each line makes up the name of the Barrow district of Hindpool.

Happy days, were brought back to mind,
In flashes, of my childhood times,
Nice neighbours, with coloured pinnies in the street,
Days of toffee apple treats,
Piggy Lane, was the place to go,
Or over the wall, the station, a no no,
Old friends, long forgotten, brought a tear to my eye,
Looking through the book of happy days gone by.

Mr and Mrs Oakes are well known in Barrow and Ulverston.

Her husband’s brother, Peter, managed a butcher’s shop on Dalton Road, Barrow, from the 1960s through to the 1980s.

Other relatives in Furness include the Barrow hospital nurse Sister Pat Asbury and recent mayor of Ulverston, Pat Jones.

Mrs Oakes went on a short-break to Melbourne and saw the large and ornate sideboard in the city cathedral which originally stood in Aldingham Hall, just off on the coast road.

She writes: “My very favourite place in Barrow is Furness Abbey where in 1951 my mum and dad took my brother Allan and I on a cold January day to see the snowdrops in bloom.

“We were by a brook and I was aged nine and have never forgotten that day.

“Three years ago, I opened a People’s Friend magazine and there was a beautiful photograph of snowdrops.

“It is now in a nice frame and that beautiful childhood memory now sites on my lounge table.”

The early Victorian sideboard in St Paul’s Cathedral, Melbourne, was made for Aldingham Hall.

It was brought to Australia in 1874 and presented to the cathedral in 1940.

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