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Thread: Debra says Formby lacks character and soul.

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    member Trampshipman's Avatar
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    Wink Debra says Formby lacks character and soul.

    Debra posted in December 09 ;- `Formby lacks character and soul etc`.
    Since that post was 7 months ago I think I should reply as `new thread`.


    So Debra ! You think that Formby is lacking in personality and soul [to use your own words] ?
    I lived in Formby from around 1935 to 1960. Of course the Formby of those days was vastly different to the one of today. It did not have a lot in the way of amenities being rather `countryfied` and was very much smaller with far less dwellings then, and having lots of picturesque cottages and fields and green open spaces, it had lots of `charm`. It also had in those days loads of `character` and `soul`. It was populated by `Formbyites` also known as `Sandgrounders` who all talked in an `up country` dialect `tha knows`, and who were all `characters` in their own right. Everyone knew their neighbors and everyone had respect for one another, and there existed a tremendous community spirit. There were well known local figures like the old hermit Billy Tasker who lived in a shack amidst the sand dunes at Formby beach, and old Jack Wright the local park keeper who we used to plague the life out of as kids. Jacks pride and joy were the mini golf links in the park which he tended lovingly. We used to run up and down over them not to do damage but just to get a `chase`. Old Jack would come thundering out of his lodge after us and if he managed to catch up with anyone he would think nothing at all of planting one of his size 10 boots up your backside. We all respected old Jack greatly ! I well remember the local events of Formby like the Flower Show at the Park, [it was affordable in those days] the agricultural shows , the gymkhanas, the military displays and parades through the village. The grand and lavish garden fetes held in the grounds of what was then the residence of the Formby family, but is now the Shorrocks Hill Country Club. The stalls etc were manned by Formbys own Scout Troup among others. Formby also had its own Boys Brigade, Girl Guides etc etc . In short, the Formby of those days despite the war was quite a vibrant place and a good place to live.
    I married a `scouse` girl in 1960 and left Formby to live in `scouseland`, and it seems to me that at about that same time a mass exodus began from `Scouseland` to Formby. All the `scousers` seemed to want to live in Formby.
    Now the Formby of today bears little resemblence to the Formby I remember. Long gone are the quaint cottages, the trees and the fields and the lovely green open spaces. All long since buried under new housing estates. Though more importantly, it seems that all the old `Formbyites` are also long gone, to be replaced by thousands of `Scousers`. All the old characters and events of old Formby have faded into history and the place itself has become nothing more than a suburb of Liverpool filled with `Scousers`
    Now Debs, I am sure you are aware that Liverpool and its `Scousers` were known worldwide for their character and their humour. So….. if you are now of the opinion that Formby lacks character and soul and whatever, then I can only suggest that you ask all the `Scousers` who took the place over, “What have they done with those particular qualities”?
    I sincerely hope that my comments will not start a war with the `Scousers`. Remember, I became one of them myself !

    Regards,
    Ken.


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    Re-member Ged's Avatar
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    I love Formby. I'd live there.
    www.inacityliving.piczo.com/

    Updated weekly with old and new pics.

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    Senior Member Samsette's Avatar
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    Hi Ken. Many Bootle families were relocated to Formby after their homes were damaged or destroyed in the air raids. I know some who went back, but I suspect a good number of them fell under the charm of old Formby and remained there. Whereabouts did you live in Formby?

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    member Trampshipman's Avatar
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    Hi Samsette,
    I lived in Formby Street adjacent to the rlwy stn, and in fact my widowed Mum worked as barmaid in The Railway Hotel which is still there today. As for the `evacuees`, well yes, a Bootle family were actually placed in the house immediately next door to us. We became great friends and as I got a bit older I `went out` a few times with both daughters. [ One at a time I hasten to add ! ] That family was one that chose to stay. The parents are `passed on` now but the sons and daughters are still in Formby to this day as far as I know. I often wish I`d never left the place myself even though it is now greatly changed.

    Regards,
    Ken.

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    Senior Member brian daley's Avatar
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    Ken that was a very well written piece, I could picture the place you wrote of and it sounded like a rural heaven. My memories of Formby date from the early post war years,when there were still tank traps and barbed wire,
    BrianD

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    Senior Member Samsette's Avatar
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    Was the eldest son named Charlie? Can't remember the other lads name, but I have a feeling we are talking about the same family. I had my first "legal" pint in the Railway. In the early fifties there was a petite blond barmaid; an ex-WREN, and I often noticed my Dad pulling in his stomach and squaring his shoulders, whenever she was serving us. I revisited it in 1988 and it was all oak and brass - not at all like the old place I remembered. By the way, I lived on Rosemary Lane, whenever I was home.

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