Dolly mixtures, outside toilets and community spirit

A song about  a time when neighbours were neighbours  from Community Correspondent John Dane

Image painted by Community Correspondent David Bradley

There’s nothing like a song to make you remember happier times. At our Mind Waves meeting, John sang us “When I was a lad”, which is about growing up in Belfast, but reminded us of all our childhoods.

The song evokes so much about growing up, from dolly mixtures to outside toilets, but the main theme is the idea of a time when “neighbours were neighbours”. Of course, it’s easy to be nostalgic and remember a better time of community spirit, but we all agreed that feeling part of a community where people do each other favours does wonders for your mental wellbeing.

As we listened to John’s moving acappella redition, we all thought about community really means. After the applause we talked about  our own experiences of loneliness and isolation and we discussed what we can do to support people around us.

What do you think? Were communities more supportive in the past? What can we do to make our communities stronger?


, ,

2 Responses to Dolly mixtures, outside toilets and community spirit

  1. Pru Davies November 19, 2014 at 11:50 am #

    Great to read John’s story. Took me right back to when I belonged to the womens’ writing group with Survivors Poetry Scotland, gosh that was a long time ago. I loved our weekly meetings at Templeton – the old carpet factory. Going up in the old fashioned lift and then hearing all the wonderful stories from other women who had grown up in a time when washing would hang on lines over Glasgow Green, the stories of the Steamies, made so colourful for me – at a time when I had only recently arrived in Glasgow and knew very little of the history. That’s why I became a member of Glasgow Womens Library plus because I live in Govan there is so much rich history – why would I want to live anywhere else?

  2. Rosie November 19, 2014 at 4:59 pm #

    Thanks Pru, it’s amazing when we start talking about these stories everyone has one to tell. Look out for Lorna’s post next week- there’s even a steamie in it.

Leave a Reply