Aimless Miscellany

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National School & Community Centre
Here's the old National School, Community Centre and council offices, with its big car park and direct access to the Trans-Pennine Trail. It used to be the old St. John's Church of England junior school. When I was little, there was a rather spooky air raid shelter next to it but that is long gone now and replaced by a Learning Centre building for computer classes. I was one of the softies at Spring Vale. We thought the St. John's kids were hard. The first picture is before the re-build, while the 2009 second picture and the 2010 panoramic view below are from after the re-build. The National School was extended and vastly refurbished in 2009 to accommodate the 'Busy Bees' preschool group, a registered charity.

Old School Old National School - Done upPicnic Area
St John's

The Community Centre is in the tall red-brick building. It is popular for jumble sales, discos, etc. and the car park is much enjoyed by skate-boarders. The red door on the lower red-brick building leads to the miniscule council office and to the Community Centre lower hall. The picnic area is in the car park, right next to the TP trail for the weary walker to picnic. Strangely, the car park sign says 'Community Centre. This is not a public car park'. If not for the community, then for whom?

Fast and Slow

Speed CameraBin wagon

A speed camera at Thurlstone panics someone into making skid marks. Safe, eh? Similar cameras in Denby Dale are regularly destroyed. The next shot is of the unsung heroes who do the local refuse collection service in their Phoenix bin wagon. Binmen to you and I, on an ever-increasing round, God bless 'em. This website has it all.

End of an Era
This left picture shows the boarded-up window of Swallow's hairdressers, which was in their family for three generations and famous for having one style - 'short back and sides'. These days it's back in fashion. Donald Swallow was a quiet and placid man, often seen around in his brown Macintosh raincoat with a trilby hat and black plastic glasses. I think that he often went to the British Legion until he passed away around 2000. The shop has boarded up ever since. Now in 2010, the building is being refurbished ready to be a hairdresser's again.

Swallow'sThe old Lock-up

The shop had one long pew down the side (like a church pew) and there were two barbers' chairs and a razor strop in the middle to sharpen up the cut-throat razor. A glass topped case in the corner by the window had the unfathomable things. Donald's white-haired old dad cut my hair when I was knee-high to a grasshopper but I never understood the laughter if he asked me if I would like 'something for the weekend'. Adults were very unfathomable in those days. For years after it closed, there was just a single red pot of Brylcreem on the left side of the window. In late 2010, the shop was refurbished and turned into - a hairdresser's. There's something satisfying about that.

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