Living by the line – 1972

York to Selby line

I first saw the rented bungalow by the railway line back in July 1972, the day I moved in. I’d married the previous November, in Cyprus, and moved into a small villa with a wrap around veranda and Mediterranean blue shutters, a long way from this dark little house. Still, it would serve its purpose until an army quarter became available and we wasted no time in freshening the place up. Out went the old fitted carpet and in came a large Indian rug. The dark beige walls were painted off-white, now probably called Clotted Cream or Soft Linen; but then, just plain off-white emulsion. The trains didn’t make much of an impression at first, but gradually, I became more aware of them. If I was in the garden hanging out washing, people would wave and I’d wave back, smiling and happy with the connection. My son was born inJanuary. It was cold and snowy that winter but by March, he was out in the garden sleeping in his Silvercross pram with its great suspension, a sun canopy and cat net, enjoying the fresh air and hum of the trains. I would sit in a garden chair keeping guard, reading and waving to anyone who waved to me. A suitable house became available in April, so followed a move into York. By August yet another move overseas. I missed our little home and garden looking out onto the railway line.
In May 2016, I moved back to Bishopthorpe, a very different house and with a very different man. Now we cycle or walk along the converted railway line and it gives us great pleasure. Last year, we pushed my grandson along this route for the first time and I pointed out to my son, the little bungalow where he lay sleeping in his Silvercross pram.

The tenant of Neville Drive

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