Terry and Sandra Williams remember what it was like to watch films

Resource Type: Audio | Posted on 24th February 2012 by Liam Physick

Terry and Sandra Williams remember how, in the Tunnel Road picture house, a member of staff would spray a perfume which the patrons thought was nice, but was in fact intended to kill the fleas! They next mention the three cinemas on Lime Street, which were so crowded that quite often, couples would have to separate when a place finally became available, so you would have one eye on the film, and one eye to see whether your partner was entering, and then when they did, ensure that they sat as close to you as possible: the system worked because the film would start again after it had finished, so you would not miss any of it

Interviewee: Terry and Sandra Williams

Date of Interview: 22nd November 2011

Interview Transcript

Terry: The Tunny used to be, used to have queues, massive queues.

Sandra: Used to have queues right along Tunnel Road. (Jodie laughs)

Terry: Another thing that comes to mind, most picture houses but certainly the Tunnel Road picture house used to have, during the showing of the film, someone coming round, spraying, like, a perfume which we thought was nice (Jodie laughs) but we later found out it was to kill the . . .

Sandra: Fleas.

Terry: . . . fleas and . . . (bursts out laughing)

Jodie: Oh! (she and Sandra laugh)

Terry: . . . and things like that!

Sandra: Instead it just smelt nice!

Jodie: Aw!

Terry: Yeah, so, cos what you had sprayed onto you, what chemicals were in it . . .

Jodie: Yeah, you were sniffing all this poison, thinking it was air freshener!

Terry: Thinking, “Nice perfume”, yeah, yeah.

Jodie: Aw!

Terry: And later on, obviously, we used to go into, to town as we got older, and again, same thing, used to queue up, Lime Street, wasn’t it, yeah?

Sandra: Yes.

Terry: Three, three big cinemas there, and we were starting to be a couple then, and we used to try and get into the two and nines or two and sixes, you had different prices (Sandra giggles) around where it was, and because you’d be queuing up, waiting to go in, they’d come in, they’d come out and they’d say, “Oh, we’ve got one . . .

Sandra: Or “we’ve got two for this”

Terry: . . . at something or other”, so you had to decide whether you’d meet up inside later on, and, if you went in on your own, then you’d be watching one eye on the film, and one eye to see your partner was coming in. (Jodie and Sandra laugh) But you also then had to weigh up where she’d go, and if a seat came available next to you, or she had a seat , just bring her and, (Sandra and Jodie laugh) as the person got up because it was a continuous film . . .

Sandra: Film.

Jodie: Oh, right, yeah.

Terry: . . . so people would come in, and they’d be, it’s 20 minutes into the film, well, they’d wait til 20 minutes into the film, and it started again, and then rather than sit right through it again . . .

Sandra: They’d just watch the beginning!

Terry: . . . they’d come out.

Jodie: They’d just watch the beginning! (she and Sandra laugh)

Terry: Yeah, yeah.

Sandra: You couldn’t do it now!

Jodie: Yeah.

Sandra: No.

Terry: So, you know, we, we progressed from the local, though we went to Smithdown Road picture house a lot, didn’t we . . .

Sandra: Yes, yeah.

Jodie: Yeah.

Terry: . . . because it was one which I didn’t need to get buses or walk, inevitably you used to walk anyway . . .

Jodie: Yeah.

Terry: . . . but coming back to the, when we were children, we’d go up to the Tunnel Road picture house, and we didn’t have the money, cos, you know, money was short.

Tagged under: cinemas, tunnel road picture house, lime street, smithdown picture playhouse

Categorised under: Change & Communities

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