Having just completed what is surely my absolute last house move, it got me to thinking about my first move. That is to say, the first one I actually remember. It took place in Belfast in late 1944, I was five years old. My father was moving from Northumberland Street where I had been born to a larger house on Eastland Street. In those days we didn’t call a local moving company, didn’t hire a van or truck, those were expenses way beyond our means. In fact they were beyond the means of most working class in the City. The big difference was the amount of items to move, today we have so much and mostly so unnecessary clutter to move (speaking from recent experience here). Back in those days we just had the bare essentials. I recall my brother-in-law Cookie borrowed a small horse and cart to move the larger items, beds,chairs and kitchen table. Even with the cart it took several trips. Everything else we carried or loaded in the baby pram. The prams were large in those days and everyone seemed to have one, so its possible we borrowed one or two more. It took several trips to complete the move, fortunately Eastland St was only a few streets over so walking back and fro was possible but also very tiring. Once in the new house we had no unpacking to do, no garbage to throw out, just a quick sweep through the kitchen and we were landed.The coal from under the stairs came with us too, but I can’t remember how it was carried, maybe in the dustbin?? I was quite excited by my new surrounding because we had an air raid shelter right outside our front door. Life was much more simple in those far off days, but I suspect moving house, while it sounds easy, was just as stressful as it is today.
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