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My West Bromwich father walked me down the aisle with a cleaning tag on suit

By Black Country Bugle  |  Posted: September 01, 2014

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RE your article on Spon Lane in The Bugle (August 7 edition). I was born at No. 142 Spon Lane and my parents were Henry and Annie Walker and they had six children - three boys and three girls.

There was myself Jean with my sisters Ethel and Doris and my brothers Len, Stan and Harry. However, sadly there is only myself and my brother Harry left.

Over the road from The New Bell, pictured in The Bugle, there was The Old Bell. The manager was Ted Woodward and his wife Margaret. This was my family's local pub and my Dad would go for the last hour in the bar and Mom and my Aunts would also go for the last half hour, but standing in the passageway instead.

We had some brilliant nights in the back room on New Year's Eve with our Aunts and Uncles and with my Uncle Rob always dressed up.

Lower down from The Old Bell was a cobbler's shop where my brother worked, and then a bit lower down was our house which was over the road from Brettles (The Foundry). We lived near a corner so our front door was in Spon Lane and then entry to our backyard was in Boulton Road.

I went to Spon Lane School and was in the choir at The Good Shepherd Church which is also where I got married and then back to Spon Lane School for our wedding reception, as my cousin was good friends with the school caretaker.

My school cookery teacher also did the food for my wedding reception and she also lived at the back of Spon Lane in Boulton Road.

My Dad couldn't afford a new suit for my wedding and so had it cleaned instead. However, I had a beautiful white wedding dress which I was very proud of. But it was not till after the wedding that I found out my father had walked me down the aisle with the cleaning tag still on his jacket.

I can laugh about it now but I didn't at the time!

Myself and my new husband James William Reed (Jim) lived in my parents' front room and I had my first son John Reed in their back bedroom. After two years we moved into a house in Arthur Street where I went on to have three more children, Neil, Mandy and Darren Reed.

I have some lovely memories of Spon Lane and could go on forever but I'll stop now. Regards.

Mrs J Reed,

34 Jack David House, Beddoe Close,

Tipton, DY4 7HZ.

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