Oral History collection: Mrs Susan McGuire (born 1953 July, Hammersmith; lived later in Middleton Street, Swansea, health worker; volunteer at West Glamorgan Archives) interviewed by Catrin James about being in school in the 1960s in Swansea

Scope and Content

Track 1. [00:02:00] Childhood / Portmead: Moving to the new housing estate in Portmead, Oakford Place, garden, life on the estate, description of house, father had a side car, family life. [00:03:10] Childhood / Portmead: The ravine in Portmead, description of homes and flats, putting washing out, glad to have good housing, lots of children around a safe place to be, lots of families emigrated to Australia, community spirit. [00:05:15] Childhood / Portmead: Brother being ill and taken into Hill House Hospital, mother saving pennies to use at the phone box and neighbours giving Sue's mother pennies for the phones. [00:06:10] Childhood / Portmead: Little tin Tabernacle, prefab church for Portmead, the reverend was Fred Secombe, Harry Secombe's brother. [00:07:20] Childhood / Portmead: The chimney sweep coming around the houses was exciting for the children, rag and bone man, Sue giving her own jumper to the rag and bone man in exchange for a goldfish. Out to play, mothers gossiping. In and out of each others houses. [00:09:40] Childhood / Portmead: The estate shunned a divorced woman and her child. [00:10:40] Childhood / Portmead: Cadle Mill, shops, Pentregethin Road, estate built on farm land, prefab houses, Caereithin chip shop. [00:10:00] Childhood / Portmead: Sue McGuire was born in London in 1953, father was from Mayhill, mother from Chiswick. They moved to Swansea in 1955, taking a room in St Thomas, then offered a council house on the new Portmead estate. [00:13:00] Childhood / Portmead: Ladies coming round in a white van wearing white overcoats giving National dried milk, in tins in exchange for coupons. [00:13:55] Childhood / Portmead: Diversity / mix of people on the estate, neighbours, Polish and Italian families. Kind families, many couldn't speak English. Travelling in the side car, father converting an ambulance to a family car. [00:16:05] Childhood / Portmead: Sue's Father's work as a door to door salesman, Sue's father and men going off to civil defence. [00:17:35] Childhood / Portmead: A lady on the estate having mental health problems and the neighbours being nosy then the doctor came. [00:18:17] Childhood / Portmead: School, going to the brand new Portmead primary school in the late 1950s, so many children. Walking back home on her own one day when she shouldn't,the bell went and Sue thought school was out for the day, it was before school had finished and mother being worried as how she walked back on her own, mother walking her back up to school with her smaller siblings, it was only break time. [00:20:00] Childhood / Portmead: Being transferred to Cadle primary school as the overflow of children was so high, free school milk, going to 'big school' the juniors. [00:21:30] Childhood / Portmead: School trip to Bristol Zoo by train, getting the train at Cockett station. [00:22:00] Childhood / Portmead: 1964 National Eisteddfod in Swansea, Sue sang in the Cor Plant concert, making 'Twist' dresses, concert was held in Singleton park. [00:24:00] Childhood / school: 11 plus, going to Cockett Technical Secondary school for girls, it being a culture shock, older girls, rivalry between the schools, grammar schools, getting the school bus. [00:04:50] School: School uniform. [00:05:40] School: Gym uniform, playing netball. [00:06:50] School: Tragic times, school girl being knocked over at Fry's Corner on the main Cockett road and a few other school girls injured, there was no counseling after. Lolly pop man also being kocked over after it happened. Young girl taking an overdose. [00:10:50] School: Mother buying Sue a Cilla Black record, Sue loved the record. In 1968 - everyone congregating to the main hall to be told that Robert Kennedy had died. [00:13:15] School: In 1966 tea time TV coming on with news about the Aberfan disaster, school and community saving money and food for the families in Aberfan, men from the Portmead estate going to help. [00:00:01] School: Cockett technical / secondary modern, Cottage Homes nearby, head teacher Dot and other teachers. Mrs Audrey Jackson the English teacher inspired Sue with a love of English literature and Dylan Thomas. Cooking lessons, sometimes Sue's mother couldn't afford the ingredients.

Track 2. [00:00:01] Personal Details: Sue McGuire, b 1953, Hammersmith, father Swansea man, moved to Swansea at age 2. [00:01:19] Housing: Family "took rooms" in Middleton St, St Thomas; couple, 3 children, in 2 rooms. [00:01:48] Housing: Council House, Portmead (new, then) via Housing Needs List. [00:02:18] Housing: Description of property, estate. [00:03:32] Housing: Flats. [00:04:43] Society: All families on estate had young children. [00:04:48] Emigration: Many families to Australia, end of '50s, Assisted Passages. [00:05:15] Society: Community spirit very good. [00:06:14] Church: Glenside Rd church, prefab: vicar was Harry Secombe's brother, Fred. [00:07:25] Housing: Coal fires, chimney sweeps. [00:08:02] Commerce: Rag & Bone Man. [00:09:01] Society: Community spirit, Welsh mams, gossip. [00:09:41] Society: Stigma of divorce, early 1960s. [00:10:51] Retail: Local Portmead/Cadle shops, still there. [00:11:50] Housing: Prefabs. [00:12:21] Retail: Chip shop - Italian- at Caereithin; only chippie to sell liver & onions. [00:13:09] Retail: White Van: coupons for tinned dried milk & OJ. [00:1350] Society: Diverse even then - many east Europeans (Poles), monoglot. [00:16:38] Civil Defence: Many men involved - emergency service training. [00:17:40] Society: Nosiness of Welsh Mams. [00:18:27] Education: Portmead Primary School, opened 1956-57, transferred to Cadle (poor reputation, but "lovely"). [00:21:32] Education: School Trip to Bristol Zoo - BR from Cockett Station. [00:22:16] Eisteddfodd: Swansea, 1964, school involvement, Singleton Park concert. [00:24:39] Education: Secondary education: passed 11+ at resit, to Cockett Tech, site of Dilwyn Llewelyn Comp. [00:25:50] Education: "Culture Shock" of Secondary Ed; bullying. [00:26:23] Education: School rivalries, Cockett and Grammars, bad bus behaviour.

Track 3. [00:00:01] Personal Details: Continuation of Sue McGuire interview, from T 31-2ii. [00:00:28] Leisure: Wales v NI, Vetch Field, (because George Best was playing). Says Wales lost: probably 15/4/64, when NI won 3-2. Best's other game at the Vetch: Wales won 1-0 in May '70. [00:02:06] Brownies: Member when young. [00:02:50] Religion: Brownies: Catholics banished for prayers. [00:03:16] Brownies: Proficiency Badges: Childcare badge, 7-10 year olds in strangers' homes, bathing babies. [00:03:46] Brownies: Badges: Homecare, First Aid, Nursing The Sick. [00:05:04] Girl Guides: Guides at Caereithin, St Teilo's Church. [00:05:25] Girl Guides: Sybil Coleman, Guide Captain, one of first ordained female ministers. [00:05:48] Girl Guides: Trips to Penllegaer (site of Muriel Drinkwater's 1946[?] murder, oldest cold case in Wales. Fieldcraft. [00:06:56] Girl Guides: Subject was first Queen's Guide in Company. [00:07:30] Ranger Guides: Joined in 1967, age 14; Youth Hostelling, Ilfacombe, menus, to Burlington (where Halifax is now, off Kingsway). [00:09:02] Duke of Edinburgh Awards: Gold: link with Welsh Guards Army Youth Team, assault courses: Sgt Mike Skinner. [00:09:42] Duke of Edinburgh Awards: Four days out on Brecon Beacons. [00:10:27] Duke of Edinburgh Awards: Buckingham Palace for Gold Awards; only one parent could attend. [00:11:35] Boy Scouts: Parents involved in Cubs and Scouts. [00:12:57] Boy Scouts: Bingo to fundraise for Cubs, c 1965-66. [00:14:29] Boy Scouts: Portmead Carnival. [00:16:55] Gang Show: Scout & Guide Shows at Grand Theatre. [00:17:56] Investiture: 1969: City status. [00:21:31] Recreation: Holidays in London, cousin as guide (TOTP, thrown out for being too young, lucky girls). [00:22:25] Fashion: London ahead of Swansea - flower power, etc. [00:23:37] Recreation: Joe Loss Show on radio: Ross McManus, singer, socialising with son Declan (Elvis Costello). [00:25:54] Recreation: Meets Brian Wilson, Beach Boys (who is asked to procure Tremeloes' autographs). [00:26:49] Fashion: Scholl sandals (Freeman Hardy & Willis cork versions, cheaper, inferior, design flaw): cricket jerseys. [00:30:08] Fashion: Cockle hats. [00:31:04] Retail: Swansea shops - Woolworths, restaurant in High St branch. [00:32:15] Retail: Wimpy Bar, College St; Milkmaid on Kingsway; Boots (where Macdonalds is, now); BHS (food section, v good). [00:35:32] Retail: C & A: Portland St (where closed Co-op was). [00:35:59] Fashion: Long dresses for social occasions. [00:36:21] Moon Landing: 1969: media and public interest. [00:38:10] Leisure: Top Rank (Kingsway), Sat afternoons for u-18s. [00:39:36] Crime: 1973 murders of two female Top Rank patrons, Llandarcy (solved 2011, DNA). [00:41:03] Leisure: Jimmy Wild's, near Station, rough, now car park opposite Alexandra House. [00:43:07] Copperworks: Memories: decrepit in 1980s. [00:45:07] Swansea: "Night club capital" decline of Wind St - drink & violence.