Make do and mend at Bank Cottage in the 1930s

Audrey Rann describes the resourcefulness of her parents:

Mother used to make our clothes and the rag rugs for the floor. The latter would be put in front of the fire so you had something other than bare floor on which to put your feet. Mother used to knit our jumpers. She would unpick a jumper or cardigan, sometimes two to make one, given to her and make sweaters for us, often multi-colour. I didn`t like these but dare not complain as I was lucky to have something warm to wear.

Father used to mend our shoes and mother also became quite good at repairs if he wasn`t around. Father always did the leather soles which had to be soaked to soften it. He used what was known as a Last which had three different sized feet, child, woman and man, which would stand on a table to allow you to use the size foot you wanted. There would be metal pieces put into the soles at the toes, shaped like the segments of an orange, and which were called Segs, so that the toes didn`t scuff too quickly. On the heel you had a stud shaped like a horseshoe. These used to make a noise when walking along the road and we used to enjoy trying to make sparks.

Monday was Wash Day and took all day. It seemed to us that when we came home at lunchtime, mother was up to her elbows in soap suds, having started after we went to school. Lunch was always cold meat and potatoes, that was all. There was one tap in the corner, with a bucket underneath. As far as I can remember mother never had a mangle or a wringer, only hand wringing. We had a wooden clothes horse and a line across the kitchen. Otherwise it would be put outside and would freeze in winter.

The loo was up the top of the garden, very basic. You didn`t want to go there in the night if you could help it! That stands you in good stead for later life!  We did use a torch outside.