Growing up in Portadown

in the

Thirties and Forties

by Harry Foy

Cover picture: A  painting of Francis Street 

by Colin Turner.



I was brought up in the Marley Estate, an area which included Bridge Street, Castle Street, Francis Street and Marley Street. They were hard times and exciting times. Hard in the fact that we had the Hungry Thirties with mass unemployment followed by the Second World War with food rationing. Exciting, with all the new inventions and benefits that were becoming available. In a few short years we went from candlelight to electric light. The wireless brought entertainment into the home and the arrival of the "talking pictures" proved a great attraction. Here, for the princely sum of two old pence you could live out your fantasies - you could swing through the trees with Tarzan, ride the range with the Singing Cowboys, or split your sides laughing at the antics of Laurel & Hardy or the Keystone Cops. On our doorstep we had the River Bann for fishing, swimming and boating , a wonderland of adventure. I hope you enjoy it with me - my trip down memory lane.

Harry Foy

"Fond memories bring the light of other days around me!   Thomas Moore

The proceeds from the sale of Harry's 'Growing up in Portadown' book were donated to Portadown Rotary Club Charities. The book sold out in a very short time, as there are regular requests for copies and no re-print planned Harry decided to allow me to publish all the stories online.
Below are links to each short story, to read click on any title.  We hope you enjoy.  
Market Day in Portadown.

Street gangs and fogging orchards.

The wee shops.

Colourful vendors.

The Canon's trip.

The Butterfly.

Greenaway's ghost.

Summer on the Bann.

The Great Lemonade Robbery.

My first day at school.

The packman.

Even the dog understood the language.

Bombs - not sandwiches.



Our House.

A long throw since skittles game was born.

The Gas Man Cometh.

In tune with the band.

Clubs and tickmen.

Donald Campbell Had nothing on us.

The Obinsville Cowboys.

Singing in the streets.

Such good sports.

The days of the sand quays.

The magic of Christmas.



Skipping, football and cigarette cards.

Escape to the movies.

My first taste of plays.

Smuggling knew no borders.

The tale of the pigs.

Three brass balls.

Thanks for the memories.

First class show!.

Who could forget Mary Ann!.

Health remedies.

Fondly Remembered.

Going To The Dogs.


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