In Praise of Pollution (mk 2)

One Of The Last Posts on My Old Blog, Migrated Here To My New Blog

Trying again in the hope my laptop consents to publish this time.

When I was a child I spent every summer holiday with my Grandma in Bolton, Lancs. We visited relatives and the highlight of the stay was when we spent a week in my uncle’s boarding house in Blackpool.

But there was excitement too in the journey North. From the coach window I viewed changing landscapes and dreamt of magic times to come.  By the time we reached The Black Country with its funnel shaped chimneys there was no doubt we were entering a different land and, arriving at last after dark, our destination gleamed under street lamps. Yes, Bolton gleamed!

The women who lived in those back-to-back terraces took pride in their homes, both inside and out. Front steps were polished, as were windowsills.  I could have believed an army worked on hands and knees throughout the night, buffing pavements and cobbles.  Bolton shone like jet.

The Town Hall was magnificent, with an underground aquarium (bizarre).  My relatives told me the building was exactly the same as the town hall in Portsmouth – only theirs was black, they added with pride.  What colour is it now, I wonder? 

I loved the black of Bolton and I loved the smell; like bonfire night all year round.  Of course, pollution had to go.  But what a shame it took with it the splendour of black.