The history of a village is incomplete without a record of the memories of its residents. We have started by recording some of the more senior residents but the intention is for this to be an ongoing project whereby we interview the memories or current experience of as many residents as they too will be history one day. We are fortunate to be helped in this by members of the Cartmel Peninsula Local Historical Society who also kindly donated old interviews they had in their archives and which are marked below as ‘CPLHS’.
We are very grateful to Peter Roden (pictured left) for transcribing the interviews for us. It is an arduous task for which we are deeply indebted to Peter.
Click below to hear the interviews or click the link to read the corresponding transcripts.
This is a short interview (thirteen and a half minutes) with Peter Bibby given in early 1993. Peter was born in Dalton in Furness in 1913. He describes his various jobs in coal pits and then farms and Holker for 5 years walling and hedging. He also worked for Lancashire County Council driving a road roller for 23 years. Various anecdotes from that period are mentioned.
Interviewed for the CPLHS in 1993 by Denys Vaughan
Derek Birch, born 6 February 1933 always lived locally. The 43 minute interview deals principally with two subjects, namely, (1) Cartmel Cricket Club, which recently made a presentation to him for 60 years service in various capacities, and (2) his career as a painter and decorator. The latter deals with how apprentices used to be treated, and early wage rates, changing fashions for wall paper, managing large projects for hotels, for one of which he won a prize from the British Decorators Association, and changing health and safety issues regarding working on ladders.
Interviewed for the CVS on 19 May 2016 by Irini Tzortzoglou
Robert (Bob) William Copeland, born 3 December 1919, lived in Cartmel since about the age of 7, and for many years worked as the village postman. Irini Tzortzoglou and or John Batty, recorded 3 interviews with him on 18 November 2014 (50 minutes), 27 November 2014 (73 minutes), and 15 May 2015 (59 Minutes).
In this, the first interview, he mentions how he came to Cartmel where his maternal grandfather and family lived, and several houses where he lived as a child including in Barngarth where there was a barn used for storing Cartmel Show materials; memories of Cartmel Primary School in late 1920s including named staff, school friends, school sports days, selection procedures for Grammar School etc.; memories of family involvement in bringing electricity to Cartmel in 1926; and his first job at Aynsome Laboratories, second short job on a farm and working as a butcher’s boy.
Interviewed for the CVS on 18 November 2014 by John Batty & Irini Tzortzoglou
In his second interview, Bob mentions further memories of first coming to Cartmel and family connections here, and also of school days; memories of former shops in Cartmel Square, games that boys played, how locals used to sneak into race meetings, first cars in Cartmel, stories of Sunday School, bible study classes, Band of Hope meetings and choir summer outings; memories of muffled church bells after R101 airship crashed, and seeing the Hindenburg airship spying pre war; working at the Grand Hotel and then move to Merlewood Hotel when it first opened; memories of people who built the Cartmel Village Hall.
Bob Copeland 2
Interviewed for the CVS on 27 November 2014 by Irini Tzortzoglou
In his third interview, Bob mentions various jobs that he had for short periods post war, including being a plumber’s mate in Barrow shipyard, before joining the Post Office; the majority of this interview comprises a description of his work as a postman, including walking rounds, bicycle rounds, and then becoming a driver on a van round, how mail was prepared and carried, and a detailed description of his Cartmel round with numerous anecdotes about people at various addresses; other subjects mentioned include preparations for water lavatories to replace earth lavatories, and adventures getting home after WWII due to lack of trains then from Lancaster to Grange.
Bob Copeland 3
Interviewed for the CVS on 15 May 2015 by John Batty
John Dixon was born in 1896. In this 36 minute interview, he talks about his father being the first tenant at Ellerside Farm in 1890s, moving onto Pit Farm and later on to Borwicks Farm and at the same time Greenbank. He mentions various breeds of sheep, sheep dipping and changes in practice. He also talks about dealing in cattle and sending down to Ipswich or Lancaster auction on the train and attending the Ulverston market weekly.
Interviewed for the CPLHS in early 1993 by Denys Vaughan