I was brought up in St Helens and Billinge was a hilly country village that was five miles away. In the summer of 1949 or 1950 a group of us children of all ages took sandwiches and bottles of pop or water for a picnic on Billinge Lump. The official name is Billinge Hill but anyone who has lived in the area always refers to it as the Lump. The Lump is the highest ground in the area from which you can see both the Liverpool Cathedrals and also, on a really clear day, the reflection on the River Mersey. On the top of the Lump is a small square stone building, somewhat neglected and this point is one of the signal points around the country that would have had a bonfire lit to signal the approach of an invading army/armada etc. On the sunny day we went for our picnic the hill, then covered in ferns and the surrounding woods provided a great place for playing hide and seek and generally having a good time. Having eaten all our sandwiches we used the paper bags to collect blackberries. We ate lots, grubs and all, and carried the rest in soggy paper bags home for mums to make into bramble jam.
It was a great adventure, with no adults to limit our play and no thought given to any danger. It was just such a happy memory and I wonder how many of the group who went that day still remember it?
A memory shared byon Jul 1st, 2009.
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