The Swinging Sixties

A report on our meeting held on 6th February 2017

A near full house of members, recently elected members, and guests gathered to hear Sub Prior Bro Garry Sunley present his talk, “The Swinging Sixties”. There was an audible groan of mock disappointment when Bro Garry emphasised that despite the inviting title, the talk was not about sex, drugs, and rock & roll.

Bro Garry explained that the 60’s was a decade in which he developed from a shy lad into a confident adult and extended the Old Town world of his young childhood to encompass the whole of Bridlington.  He took us on a photographic tour of the town as it was then with personal anecdotes along the way.

Bro Garry attended Bridlington School and early ventures into the unknown led him, like many other young boys, to the railway station and yards. His pictures included a steam locomotive on a turntable roughly where B&Q now stands and the coal yard, now the Tesco supermarket. Also the Nichols family with horse drawn rullies stacked with bags of coal. When the coal trade fell off for the summer, the horses would then draw landaus full of visitors.

He remembers the barrow boys touting for business at the end of Station Approach. They weren’t allowed in front of the station, but by the time visitors had carried cases from the station they were happy to employ the barrow boys. Bro Garry remembers his barrow boy days.  He said he didn’t do it for long.  A lot of work and sometimes you got a shilling and sometimes just a thank you.

Fishermen’s cottages down Hilderthorpe Road were demolished in 1967 to widen the road.  That never happened then.  Hopefully it will now. A photograph showed the coach park behind full to the brim.

Bro Garry went on to show how shops and businesses had changed. On Quay Road what is now Beevers was Turners Nurseries, next door Cranswicks was the Rediffusion Shop.  Many rented their TV’s from here.  They were too expensive to buy. The gas show room stood just before the railway crossing.

On Promenade, the shopping centre replaces the bus station and much of Princess Street. The Yorkshire Evening Post and Kidds Removals offices, and a useful Post office were demolished. Eagleton’s Cafe on Promenade was a popular hangout for youngsters.  It is now Speedy Peppers.

Among the many other 60’s memories Bro Garry revived were large ships in the harbour delivering potash and timber, Denis Elsom’s first marina plans of 1968, an open Clough Hole and the short lived harbour bridge, Carltons shop, the Benefit Shoe shop, YEB showroom, and Gipsey Rose Lee the Palmist. Sadly missed are the handy parking places which King Street once provided.

Prior Rick Hudson asked Chris Gatenby to give the vote of thanks.  She thanked Bro Garry for an entertaining and nostalgic look back at a Bridlington many members would remember.