Tuesday, 21 August 2007

Norah Street, Bethnal Green

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The photo shows part of Bethnal Green Road in the East End of London, borough of Tower Hamlets, I grew up in this part of London and usually go back once a year and have a look around if anything has changed. Of course, a lot has changed. The population have changed and a large percentage is of Bangla Desh or Somali origins. It was always an area for ethnic minorities, my own ancestors being part Huguenot, (although the minorities are becoming somewhat majorities) and many people visit this part of the East End to take advantage of what it has to offer – restaurants with far eastern food choices and shops selling vegetables and fruit that although today are known, but in my younger years were exotic to say the least.Somewhere on my blog I wrote an article about my street in Bethnal Green, Norah Street, see link. It is a few minutes walk from the photo above just around the corner, as one would say. I mentioned in my earlier article that the late Dusty Springfield once recorded an tv commercial for Wonderbread in this street. The actual recording work must have taken place around 1964 when I was around 18 years old – I think. This morning I had a wonderful surprise when I switched on the computer. A Yahoo contact sent me the video via You Tube. Someone in the States of all places had put it on You Tube. Imagine my surprise – even got the “wet eye” syndrome seeing my street alive again with all its houses and the square in the middle which was not available to through traffic and where I spent my childhood years. The person who sent me the video is also a one time inhabitant of Norah Street, but somewhat younger than I am and actually lived in the street up to the time that it was ready to be demolished. And here it is (in black and white of course).

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