A lady explains how life was for her as a child at home.  She explains how she left school at 14 years old in 1933 to work in service (as a servant) in the “big house”. 

It was a privilege to record this lady, now deceased, who will forever be remembered  in these clips.  She was in service to the gentry, the true life of upstairs downstairs.  She was a barefoot child who could only go to school when the police charity ball funded her clogs.  Her father was a night-soil cleaner at a time when toilets were a shared convenience.  She explains the intimate and the odd and makes us realise how easy our modern life is.

There must be many older people who have similar interesting stories to tell and it is our duty and privilege to record and communicate their stories.  You can help save our community’s memories by talking to old people and recording on your camera or phone or computer and sending it to peterincumbria at gmail dot com


Sadly this fascinating lady has died but her story shows how important it is to act now to preserve unique and unrepeatable memories.

The video clips were taken in 1999 at the old museum (it has now moved to be beside Millom railway station) to illustrate the oral histories for Cumbria Archives Millennium project but the ladies were so helpful and fascinating that I put the clips together for future generations to realise what the past was by hearing those who lived then.  

You can arrange a visit to the museum at

For further information please contact peterincumbria at gmail dot com.

Created / Uploaded by Peter Nicholson