Brief bio

  • Born and raised in Whitwell, Derbyshire. Nearest town Worksop, Notts and nearest city Sheffield. Robin Hood and Peak District country!
  • Moved to Swindon with No 1 daughter (okay only daughter) about 20 years ago
  • Worked at Swindon Research Councils for about 16 years until early retirement in 2009
  • Did a year volunteering with an adult literacy group at Swindon college and undertook courses in teaching in the lifelong learning sector: PTLLS and CTTLS. Then I went to UWE to get an education! ๐Ÿ™‚
  • May 2014 – Joint English Hons BA graduate – 1st class don’t ya know!? ๐Ÿ™‚

I moved to Swindon from a ย part of the country still ravaged from the legacy of MT and the miners’ strike. Coming here from that was truly like coming to the land of milk and honey. You’ve no idea. Hence to a large extent my fondness for and advocacy of Swindon and the decision to create this Swindon blog.

You can find me on Twitter @Anjelica1956 and Instagram amaatk123.

The blog has a Facebook pageย where you will find links to what’s on the blog and much more besides, so connect with me there.

My business:ย

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#swindonblog #swindonia #swindonianblog


12 responses to “Brief bio”

  1. David Foster says :

    Hi my name is David Foster.
    I was born in Swindon 1943
    This is a brief resume, regarding the article on state of the old Canal bridge Milton Rd, and the building on it.
    Further to my previous message regarding the bridge and the building adjacent to it in 1965, the building I believe was a law court earlier, and before that it must have been some sort of warehouse for canal traffic, because there were lifting chains which protruded out over what was the Canal, it must have been empty for some time, until a chap by the name of Mike Smith took over the lease, it then became known as the New Yorker Discotheque. I had my own window cleaning business in the town, starte by an old friend Tom Beale, from the Beales Cafe fame at the bottom of Fleming Way then, it was here I met Mike Smith a fruit machine operator, who’s business was at the cross roads of Station rd and Manchester rd, I did various jobs for him like collections from pubs, clubs, cafรฉs.
    He mentioned one day that he was going to start a club in a building on Milton rd bridge, and would I be interested in running the coffee bar, those days you couldn’t get a drinks license where customers were under 21, and the type of clientele would be well under this age.
    But there was a catch I would have to run the Cafe in havelock street as well, on a fifty fifty basis, in those days I was always looking to make something from somewhere, I accepted and so our partnership took off.
    While the Discotheque was being developed and painted I carried on with my own thing, it wasn’t until he told me the decorations were finished and I should have a look, to my amazement the dance hall had been decorated to resemble a New York street scene on all four walls, and when the fluorescent lights were turned on it was just just like walking on the side walk, I had never seen anything like it.
    The first night opened with the local band and Justin Hayward singing, not long after he moved on to be the front man for the Moody Blues fame, like nights in white Satin and many other songs, the first night didn’t do that well but within a week we were pulling in 200 and more, the word was out, we doing good business in the coffee bar as well, we’d order crates and crates of Pepsi, Coke and Fanta, and sometimes have to get extra deliveries.
    As time went on we had better groups like, Geno Washington, The Cream, Fleetwood Mac, Chris Farlowe, and the list would go on, one night there were so many in the building we had to close the doors it became that popular, as time went on Havelock street had a compulsory purchase order placed on most of, to make way for the new shopping centre.
    The disco had been going for 3 years and it came into direct competition with the Brunel Rooms. I left in 1968 and took over another cafe in Calne.

    • amaatk123 says :

      Thanks for sharing this David. I’ve turned it into a post under the guest bloggers section. Brilliant reminiscences. Cheers! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Maggie Brunger says :

      This stirred a memory that I had completely forgotten. I was a student at the Art School at The College in 1965, and somehow a friend and I helped paint the night club walls (mentioned above). We mixed washing powder (I think it was Daz) with the dark blue ‘sky’ paint and when the black lights were turned on, it sparkled. (As many will remember, those black lights were notorious for highlighting the glow from underwear, shining through top clothes, and the dandruff on many a boys’ shoulders. Neither were pretty sights….

  2. amaatk123 says :

    Oh – and tell any friends and family here in Swindon about the blog. ‘Flog the blog’ – that’s my motto! ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. amaatk123 says :

    Oh thanks Zoe. It’s only a couple of clicks. Grange Park eh? And your partner from Shirebrook. SUCH a small world!

  4. Zoe says :

    Hi, I’ve just come across your blog after looking for some historical (well, late ’80s early ’90s… hardly historical!) photos of my hometown.
    What a coincidence – my partner is from Shirebrook, not far from Whitwell!
    We now live abroad and he really misses Swindon, even though he only lived there with me a short while.
    Keep up the fantastic work ๐Ÿ™‚

    • amaatk123 says :

      Zoe – thank you for the lovely comment. Please,please follow the blog then you will get an e-mail update when I publish a new post. And you and your partner can live in Swindon vicariously! ๐Ÿ™‚

      Kind regards

      Angela – aka – Born again Swindonian.

      • Zoe says :

        Will do Angela – also, I’m from Grange Park – my parents still live there.
        Thanks again ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Brian Carter - Carter Collectables @cartercollectab says :

    Great blog. Thanks for being so positive about Swindon (so many aren’t). Have you thought about joining Twitter? Good way of keeping in touch (both ways) with other people being positive about our town.

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