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New Brighton New Years day

January 2, 2020

Happy New Year everyone. We spent a lovely few hours on the beach at New Brighton yesterday, in the sunshine no less !

Memories of my childhood days of noisy ‘fun’ arcades and art deco buidlings.

At the end of the seafront you can find Victoria Road which many years ago used to look like this. It was a bustling road full of cinemas, bars, tea-rooms and hotels to cater for New Brighton’s busy tourist trade.

It was a busy thriving area.

When I was young the area used to look more like this. Unfortunately in the late eighties and up until recently the area fell into demise and became a virtual ghost town. Closed down / disused shops and businesses, really quite sad.

So it was a wonderful surprise to see the start of the redevelopment of the Victoria Quarter (read more here) and view the colourful murals that have gone up already.

My dad remembers the one legged diver (Peggy Gadsby) that used to stand on the Wallasey Pier and dive for pennies, presumably for a fee in order to make a living. Another local resident recalls…”He was a daring, one-legged man who made death-defying dives from the height of New Brighton pier into the murky waters of the Mersey. He timed his spectacular plunges with the arrival of the ferry-boat full of trippers, and his wife collected pennies from them by means of a bag on a long stick. She would cry, ‘Come on now. Don’t forget the diver. Every penny makes the water warmer,’ and, ‘If you don’t put a penny in the bag, it’ll rain before you go home tonight.’ After each dive he had to climb back up a narrow, iron companion ladder, no mean feat with one leg! “. Great to see him remembered here.

Banksy-esque and illuminating.

Hope you had a great start to your year, so long 2019, I’m afraid you won’t be missed. Welcome instead to the new ‘roaring twenties’ lol

2 Comments leave one →
  1. January 7, 2020 9:41 pm

    That poor man who had to dive for pennies… you just wonder about people like that, how they had to scratch and claw to make a living. It’s good to see a revival there in Brighton.

    • January 7, 2020 10:39 pm

      Aww Joy I wonder how he did too, perhaps better than we think as he was famous in the New Brighton area. People looked after their own in those days .

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