Jean Galer discusses young mums and the New Town Blues [Text only]

"there were young couples and especially the young wives would have been parted from mother, sisters, cousins and all the other relations"

Stevenage Museum

Well in the early days I understood that there, such a phenomena did exist. And a lot of it was put down to the fact that there were young couples and especially the young wives would have been parted from mother, sisters, cousins and all the other relations.  Because a lot of people came from places like Tottenham, Walthamstow and were there were very, very interwoven family relationships, and I think they felt the real need of the mother figure when they came down here.  And when I first came down I was 42 and in my area of Stevenage at Longmeadow I was one of the oldest women there.  They were all young women with prams, and babies and toddlers.

Eventually the parents started to come down when housing was made available for them.  My own mother came down from Sutton in 1958. She was given a one bedroom flat.  It wasn’t sheltered housing and I think that the influx of the parents must have made a very helpful contribution to the new young marrieds life down here.

But it was a town of youth in the early days, I did know of one young woman teacher who I met, who had come down as a single lady hoping to find a husband.  And at that time it was hopeless because everybody that came here was married.  So eventually she moved to another part of the country, where I hope she met with greater success. There were no single young men, not available.

 

This page was added on 16/04/2018.

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