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Photographed by John Bulmer, whose book The North was published in November.
Via Mick Hartley.
Posted at 09:10 in Art, History, Travel | Permalink
Doorstep scrubbing is a lost art.
December 16, 2012 at 09:37
The woman scrubbing that doorstep - I wonder how old she was?
December 16, 2012 at 09:43
Doorstep scrubbing is a lost art.
Presumably, it was done at a time when people had coal delivered through drop-holes near their front doors, which (again, presumably) left coal dust in its wake. Though it does have a slightly competitive and ritualistic quality.
December 16, 2012 at 09:58
I can't believe the head scarves and curlers look died out.
December 16, 2012 at 10:52
I can’t believe the head scarves and curlers look died out.
Earlier this year I found myself, very briefly, in Barnsley Market. I can report that the phenomenon hasn’t entirely vanished into history.
December 16, 2012 at 11:52
Can't speak for the UK, but over here curlers disappeared from the streets around the time of this commercial:
No one ever talks about the good Madison Avenue has done for the world.
December 16, 2012 at 13:52
Those could all have been taken in the Scotland of 1950-1975, there were, maybe still are, East Lothian mining villages with that style of look and behaviour. Noted with appreciation: the chips eaten with the fingers, straight from the newspaper (plastic tray/fork ? - unheard of.) and the lonely corner bubble-gum dispenser - ah, memories!
Stan Mann |
December 16, 2012 at 18:59
and the lonely corner bubble-gum dispenser - ah, memories!
One of my earliest memories involves one of those. They promised so much more than they delivered.
December 16, 2012 at 19:39
Doorstep scrubbing must have been hell on the knees.
December 16, 2012 at 23:04
"The woman scrubbing that doorstep - I wonder how old she was?"
Well life was reet arsh back then with accelerated decrepitude......My guess is seventeen or eighteen.
If she still has all her teeth then probably younger.
December 17, 2012 at 08:21
"Doorstep scrubbing is a lost art."
Not in Germany. I remember, in the 1990s, seeing old women (always old women)in Heidleberg in the evening scrubbing their front steps, and stoops. I don't think it was to clean up the coal dust, either.
But then, since is was OLD women, maybe there are now fewer of them...
December 17, 2012 at 14:56
Gutter-sweeping is the American version. There was one old lady down the street that sometimes forgot her clothes.
December 17, 2012 at 16:06
Mrs. Premise and Mrs. Conclusion
Todd Fletcher |
December 17, 2012 at 18:12
Oh Christ, I just got PTSD flashbacks to when I lived in Bradford.
David Gillies |
December 17, 2012 at 19:58
I now want chips.
December 17, 2012 at 20:09
Speaking as an interested outsider... There are definitely big genetic differences within England, let alone within the British Isles (let alone within Europe). And that has big consequences for culture and economics. "We are all the same under the skin" is one of the massivest pseudo-memes ever promulgated by mendacious liberals (and their lackeys).
Nanty Riah |
December 18, 2012 at 12:12
Always striking in these old photos, the minimal quantity of signage and street clutter. Obviously I understand we need constantly to be told to do or not to do this, that or the other, but what a mess we've made of our cities.
Stephen Fox |
December 18, 2012 at 15:35
The thing about doorstep scrubbing... It was your 'face to the world' and it told everyone a lot about the people who lived there. In fact, the doorstep was a very important part of the house because it was the social media of the times; a man would sit on his doorstep (or park a chair in the doorway) and talk to people going past. Often the man would be in his shirt-sleeves and wear his flat-cap (my grandfather would wear his in the house, even while watching the new-fangled thing called television -- BBC was 'our channel' and ITV 'their channel') as he talked to neighbours and passers-by.
But don't underestimate the inner strength of these people. They were willing to work in jobs no one wants to do now and, in two world wars, go to fight for their doorstep and all the others.
The doorstep might not be much but it was theirs and the Hun weren't going to have any of it.
December 24, 2012 at 15:45
Doorsteps Beecham Powders, Sanatogen Tonic Wine, Bradford vans, Rag and Bone men, Persil washing powder, Clothes boilers and wringers, my goodnmess my Guiness ads,beautiful steam trains; alost world!
Bob Mole |
January 24, 2013 at 18:24
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