My early life in Hunslet

I’ve lived in South Leeds all my life. Was born in Hunslet. Moved to Belle Isle during the slum clearance, then moved to Middleton. Moved back to Belle Isle in 2011 into sheltered housing.

20-14 Larchfield Street, Hunslet. Photo courtesy of
20-14 Larchfield Street, Hunslet.
Photo courtesy of

I was born in Larchfield Street, Hunslet in 1949. The terrace house I was born in had just one room downstairs and one bedroom upstairs. At the end of the street, was the Prince Albert pub, which my Dad used to frequent when on leave from the Army, before and after the war. I was young but remember often going to the pub to tell my Dad tea was ready. I remember having go down the street to use the outside toilets. In what was called the Midden yard. There was no toilets or bathrooms in these terrace houses.

My Mother told me once told me she hoped the Germans would bomb the Toilets, so we could all have inside toilets & bathrooms. The Germans did bomb the street and blew up a house in the street but missed ours. The Germans missed their target of a petroleum site in Stourton. A photo of our house, number 10, can be found on the web site.

I remember my first day at school, Hunslet Carr. No desks or chairs, just sat on coconut matting all day, very painful. We just had lessons in the morning, but slept in the afternoon.

Hunslet Carr School had possibly the best Rugby teaching coaches in the South Leeds area. When I was about 10, I played rugby and went on the tram from the School to the Middleton Clearings.

The family grew, the terrace house was too small, so we moved to Belle Isle into a 3 bedroom house on the council estate. But that’s another story for another day.


This article was written by Kenneth Ingram using our Community Reporters website