A great revelation in Haden Street

Some of the posts in this blog appear because of an email or phone call I sometimes receive which reminds me of an event I’d just about forgotten. It only needs that brief trigger and then I find I can recall the whole event in great detail. Such is the case in this present post. One of the main participants in this event phoned me and reminded me of what happened.

The field of Twmpath School was not much more than a hundred yards from the rear entrance to our house in Wern Terrace. The field was easy to get into because, at several places along the length of the tall railings, some enterprising character had somehow managed to bend two of the railings making it possible for us to squeeze through.

We played all sorts of games in the field. In the summer when the grass remained uncut on the banks of the football pitch we played hide-and-seek, but most of our time was spent on the football pitch playing cricket , soccer or rugby. There was only one drawback with playing on the proper football pitch: whereas we could organise a game of cricket or football in the lane at the rear of our house with just half a dozen or so boys, on the football field we needed at least double that number. So we used to  walk around the streets near Wern Terrace, such as Gwent Street, Haden Street and Brynwern to drum up some extra volunteers for the teams.

When we’d recruited enough players we would all squeeze through the railings into the field and two teams would be picked. Because of the need for extra players on such occasions we often allowed younger boys to play with us and, on this particular occasion, we recruited young Ronnie who lived in Haden Street.

Twmpath football pitch was a rather rough affair with a lot of bare earth on it and stones sticking up. The match progressed well and we were all having fun until disaster struck: young Ronnie fell over and hit the side of his face on a large and rather sharp stone. We crowded around to examine his injury as he screamed and cried. It was a rather severe injury and blood was pouring from it. So much so that we decided to send Ronnie home. As he was quite young we thought it best to send a few other boys with him to see him safely back to his house. One boy from Ronnie’s team and two from the other made things equal, so while the young medics escorted the crying Ronnie back home, the rest of us assured him that we’d let him know the result of the match later. Play was then resumed.

Ronnie lived towards the Twmpath end of Haden Street so the journey to his house was not very far. His three companions tried to calm him down as he yelled blue murder right outside his front door. Because of the pain he was suffering Ronnie continued to yell at the top of his voice for his Mum and bang on the front door. There was no immediate answer but all four could hear muffled shouts from Ronnie’s Mum somewhere inside the house.

Suddenly the door was flung wide open and there stood Ronnie’s Mum – stark naked! She had obviously been having a bath and, hearing Ronnie’s frantic screams, knew he was in some great trouble, so, without even bothering to throw a towel around her, she rushed to the door to see what was the matter. Obviously she thought that it was only Ronnie who was banging on the door.

The three young medics momentarily just stared in utter disbelief at the sight which met their young eyes. Then, they quickly explained to Ronnie’s Mum what had happened and, while young Ronnie was being ushered inside by his Mum, they hastily made their way back to the football match where they, once more, joined in the game.

When it was over they reported that they had escorted Ronnie home successfully but had been rather surprised at the nude vision of Ronnie’s Mum. Someone then remembered that we had promised to let Ronnie know the result of the football match, but there were no volunteers to visit the house with the news. Someone suggested that we let him know the following day when he’d be feeling better. Everyone agreed.

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One Response to “A great revelation in Haden Street”

  1. Clive Barnby Says:

    This account involving Ronnie’s mother reminded me of something that happened when I was a pupil at West Mon school in the late 50s. It involved the Art Room which, at that time, was at the top of the Old Building overlooking the houses on Blaendare road.

    One of the houses was occupied by a young couple – I think the husband was a minister & his young wife used to take a nap around lunchtime. However she did it in the nude & as I’ve indicated, it was possible to see into the bedroom from the Art Room. At the time, I did wonder why “extra” art lessons became popular among a number of the boys, especially ones who’d previously shown little interest in the subject !!

    The Art Master was Mr Milton Smith who lived near me in the Pontnewydd/Upper Cwmbran area after my parents moved from North road, Brynwern. He had a son, Graham, who was also talented at art, & went thro’ the same classes until the end of the 5th form when his dad got a job at Leeds (I think) Art College. They – or, at least, the parents originated from Yorkshire.

    I’ve not heard anything of Graham since. Once did a Google search for “Graham Milton Smith” to see if he’d become a successful artist but nothing. If anyone has any info about him or his dad, would be interested to hear it,

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