Thingwall is a village on the Wirral
Peninsula in Merseyside, England and it was once an area for several small
quarries of yellow sandstone, and traditional buildings in that area were made
with this sandstone.
time slip happened in the 1970's and it was experienced by a Mrs. Damson (not
her real name). She had not long moved to the village so when her 4 year old
daughter was unwell, Mrs. Damson took her out in her pushchair to give them
both some fresh air. It was a sunny day so also a good time to get to know her
local area better too.
Damson proceeded up Mill Lane, which was opposite the primary school. The lane
was tarmacked for a portion then there were cobble stones beyond the tarmac.
She walked along the cobbled lane and saw
a cottage on her right hand side. There was an old man leaning on a front
garden gate whilst he smoked a pipe. Mrs. Damson noticed he had his shirt
sleeves rolled up and his shirt was collarless. She nodded towards him, and he
responded in like. Past
this cottage, Mrs. Damson noticed a row of whitewashed cottages with hanging
baskets on their frontage. She also noticed on the left hand side of this lane,
there was a circle of country cottage flowers, along with other typical flowers
found in these types of cottages. She noticed to the side of these flowers was
a very large heap of sandstone, a stable block with an archway and further
along there were more cottages, some built with the local sandstone, and some
were of a typical orange/red house brick.
continued further along and saw a lady wearing a high neck blouse, black skirt
and a shawl. This lady appeared to be going into her house so there was no
interaction between the two women. As
Mrs. Damson passed the cottage the lady had entered, she could feel the warmth
of the open fire in the front room of the cottage. It all looked very cosy. At
the end of Mill Lane, there stood a 5 bar gate with fields and meadows beyond
it. On this gate, sat a young girl, who was dressed in a dress, pinafore, and
button boots. Mrs. Damson remembered thinking the girl was dressed in a rather
old fashioned way. The girl gave Mrs. Damson a funny look then jumped off the
gate and ran into one of the cottages. Mrs. Damson decided it was time to turn
back down the lane to get her and her daughter back home. She again, passed the
old man on her way back. Both acknowledged each other with a nod. Mrs. Damson
later told her mother of seeing the old quaint part of the village and how
pretty it was, and she would take her mother to see it.
several months, Mrs. Damson took her mother to see Mill Lane. As they proceeded
down the lane, to Mrs. Damson's surprise, there were no cobbles to be seen, it
was all tarmac and paving slabs. The cottage where she had seen the old man was
now derelict and all boarded up. The
stable block and archway were also gone, and the row of cottages now had 2
semi-detached houses on that land. The 5 bar gate was not there either and the
field and meadow beyond it was now a site for several bungalows.
Damson remarked in how quickly the new properties had been built on Mill Lane
but was shocked to see just how different it looked, given it had only been a
few months since she had last seen it. It
wasn't until many years later that Mrs. Damson was involved in a dispute over a
footpath. Her solicitor recommended Mrs. Damson get an 1830 map of the area to
check the legitimacy of the footpath. It was a difficult map to read as many
things had changed in the village since 1830, but she was able to locate her
village on it and saw that this map showed her the properties on Mill Street
that she had seen all those years ago. She also found out that the large heap
of sandstone had actually been where the Thingwall Mill had once stood but it
had been destroyed in a hurricane!
an interesting account and it must've shocked Mrs. Damson to find that these
cottages she had seen, had actually stood there on Mill Lane. I find it very
interesting that she and the old man interacted with each other and that the
young girl who sat on the gate, gave Mrs. Damson a funny look. .
*Credit for this experience being researched & documented to Dr Ann Winsper Para.science.org.uk