Oral History Interviews

Playing in Dorset countryside in 70s

The interview starts with Annette telling us about growing up in the countryside, lived in a group of houses and cottages along a main road and they used to play in the lane, older children would take them off into the fields, go off to play in the stream and sometimes she’d would take her younger brothers off to play by herself. Her parents didn’t really know where they were as long as they were back party by tea. They’d go paddling in the stream. She was out of the house, making dens, etc. She remembers being out once and the farmer came and was quite frightening to them, especially as he had a gun in his hand, said we were frightening the pheasants.

She remembers going off for quite a bit on bike rides.

There were four or five families that used to play. On other days she just go off with her two brothers and she’d be in charge. She remembers getting in trouble once as she’d cycled off much further than she thought and was late getting home (she hadn’t told her parents were she was going).

Got TV some stage in the yearly 70s, for the Olympics she thinks. They had a black-and-white telly up until her teens, while all her friends had colour tellies.

There were lots of books, Her grandparents had a big rambling house with old traditional toys and games in (they were quite hoarders) she had great fun playing with. Lots of boardgames and marbles (can’t remember what they called).

She received pocket money, which she spent on comics and sweets. She did some babysitting where she got some extra money.

When older went to Wareham or Swanage and would do a little bit of underage drinking. Talks about how she used to buy drink. Tended to drink in pubs.

She tended to help out a lot with children, did Sunday school. Was in the the guides and remembers being actually hopeless trying to put up a tent up. Lots of walking around the coast over Lulworth  scrambling up the Cliffs, pass signs saying danger.

Annette didn’t have a phone in her parents home until she was 13 and it was kept in the spare room and we were encouraged to use it. She’d use a call box. In sixth form she use to sneak off on Wednesday afternoons when they should have doing sport, she would have enjoyed sport but been told to do it is different. Usually arranged to see people at place.

Was 11 when she first went on a train on her own. She’d walk to Wool train station and get the train to Poole and go Christmas shopping with friends.

When she was in sixth form lots of parties going on and a lot of underage drinking and this involved lying to a parent about how big party will be. She didn’t drink so much, but there were people around that were drinking too much.

She was not a part of any kind of youth group. There was a fleapit cinema in Wool where should go, which was quite cheap and there was the Buzz club in Dorchester, which was The Club to go to. And there was a club in Swanage that she went to and she had to pretend she was a member to get in and she never been there before.

They go on to talk about her leisure as an adult and balancing work-life. After doing teacher training she got a job to teach in Eqypt, though’s restrictions she managed to travel quite a bit.

She enjoyed travelling and learning languages and walking. Suddenly within the space of a year she went from being single and thinking about what she should do in her free time to meeting a partner and who had two kids. It was a whirlwind romance that year.

She now goes dancing to keep fit at the gym and she is looking at learning Italian and do some lessons get better at swimming this get into the time where she can spend time for herself.

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