Personal Recollections ~ Saltcoats
I was born in Saltcoats in Kirkgate. My mother was Sadie McCallum from Saltcoats and my dad was James Boyle from Stevenston. I don't remember living at Kirkgate but I do remember 20 St. Lawrence Place. My brother Henry and my sister Josephine were born there.
The Grimlys lived on our left side and the Rogers on our right and further down on the right Mrs. Nelson with Alice and Jimmy and down by them were the Dawson's. I remember when the sirens went and my dad was on the night shift we would go next door to Mrs. Rogers and all the kids from the circle were there, it was great fun for us
We were young so the war didn’t bother us too much. My auntie Isa lived in Clydebank and they were getting bombed every night when it came to her street she figured it was getting too close, she had an underground shelter in her back yard but decided to come to Saltcoats with the three kids. Of course the sirens went the first night. When my Auntie discovered we had no shelter she got the first train back to Glasgow.
I went to Kyleshill school and we had our dinners at school and I could have eaten Mince and Tatties every day in the week they were great dinners and it’s still my favourite. We couldn’t eat fast enough to get over the shore to play and lots of days we were late getting back to school.
The shore was the greatest thing no matter where, from Ardrossan through Saltcoats and in to Stevenston it was all the same, a great adventure. In the summer we always had passes to the bathing pool I think Mr. Battersby was the bathing master then. We used to get the money now and then to get a trip on the boat around the harbour, I think it was fourpence then, and not to forget fishing with a piece of string and a bent pin the other side of the harbour.
Our move to 37 Springvale Street was a big change for us, we were in a close with Mrs McKelvie next door and Mrs. Hood and her wee dog Monty upstairs, the memory fades here on the number four tenant. My first pal on the street was Dorothy Givonetti her grannies had the wee shop just up the street.
We changed to Saltcoats Public and that was the end of running over the Canal street foot bridge to the shore at dinner time. These are a few of my memories and sometimes I wonder what life would have been like if we had stayed in Saltcoats.