Thursday, 28 April 2011

Lifelong Habits


Sitting at my desk yesterday, I was suddenly conscious that I was rocking on my chair. It’s a habit I have had since being a youngster and one that I can lay firmly on my Granma’s lap, for it was she who bought me that old wooden rocking chair that instigated this particular habit. Not only that, she was also instrumental in causing my life time love of liquorice via ample supplies of liquorice Pontefract Cakes.

The chair was wooden with a circular hole in the seat where you could presumably place a potty of some description. I was probably safely tied  into it via a scarf or some other method to ensure that I didn’t fall out. I can’t remember sitting in it of course, but my mother kept it until her demise. It would have been worth some money if it had not been cracked all the way down  the back. I have been able to find a picture on the internet of one which is very similar the the one I had.

MA Pontefract Tin-8

The Pontefract Cakes might have been bought in a tin, I am not quite sure whether Bassett’s were around in those days so it’s not certain  who made them, but I still enjoy eating liquorice to this day. My Granma is a very hazy memory for me, as she died when I was only about three or four from breast cancer. She spoiled me something rotten or so my mother used to tell me, and I just wish my memories were more clear of her. She was probably already unwell by the time I was born, and my mother and I lived with her during my early years. My father was away serving in the Army during that time, so I suppose it made sense for us to remain at home with Granma and Granddad. This was just after the war had ended of course, when things were really tight. I don’t remember much about Granma’s house either, only the basic layout of it and the back room which we all used most of the time. The front room was never used unless there were guests. It was always kept for ‘best’.

t’s just a good job I have never worked in an close office environment, I would have driven everyone batty with my constant rocking and the trouble is, it’s not until someone remarks on it that I realise I am doing it, so by that time everyone would be heartily sick of seeing me out of the corner of their eye rocking to and fro as I enjoyed my liquorice Pontefract Cakes.



  1. A colleague of mine once ate an entire box of Pontefract cakes with the inevitable effect and ended up having a day off sick because he couldn't move far from the toilet!!!!Personally I am not a lover of liquorice but dried prunes are another matter and I could do serious damage with them....

  2. Yes Diane you certainly have to be careful not to overdo it! A little at a time is the order of the day, or live to regret it!

  3. You've taken me straight back to my childhood. One of my grandathers grew up in what used to be the West Riding of Yorkshire and he loved Pontefract Cakes. As a child that is what I always gave him for his birthday. Yes - a little goes a long way - liquorice is an effective laxative.

  4. A VERY effective laxative! Care must always be shown when eating it, just a little at a time is the order of the day


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