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Marion Graham


Summer days on the riverbank, 1940s

Sepia photograph of Marion Graham holding her dog on the beach, 1940s.
Marion with her dog Trixie on the beach, 1946 © Marion Graham

Black and white photograph of Marion Graham fishing in a river, 1940s.
Marion fishing on the riverbank near Retford, 1949 © Marion Graham


Marion Graham is an active member of the Firshill and Pitsmoor Local History Group. In the piece below she describes some of the family holidays she remembers from her childhood.

When I was very young, my father was a keen fisherman. He had a motorbike with a sidecar attached and we would go off together at the weekends, Mum and I in the sidecar with Dad driving. We usually went to the seaside but were always near a river. Dad would fish while Mum and I sat on the riverbank and watched.

As I grew up I learned to fish too. I had my own rod and floats and even put my own maggots on the hook and took the fish I caught off the hook! There were quite a few! I remember those summer days as always sunny and hot. I always seemed to have horrible smelly sun oil put on my skin as I used to burn very easily. We used to camp, in a farmer's field near a river. If we were near to the beach (a couple of miles was classed as close in those days!) Mum and I would leave Dad to his fishing and spend the afternoon on the sands. The place we went to most often was Chapel-St- Leonard's. It was only a tiny village with a few shops snuggled up just off the beach. However there was also a little gift shop which sold comics, sweets and buckets and spades. I used to love the slot machine there too!

When I was ten, my brother Jeff was born. We carried on going off fishing but by now I was old enough to ride pillion behind Dad on the bike while Mum and baby went in the sidecar. I did enjoy riding on the pillion except when it rained!

Looking back I realise how lucky I was to have had holidays when I was young, many people my age didn't have a holiday until they were adults.

Written by Marion Graham, 2006