What’s in the box? Bits & bobs that may come in useful – as kept by most men

This innocuous wooden box (you can see the side of it above) which I’m guessing was made to store a form of fishcakes, started life in the early 1960’s or even 1950’s. I know where it was sourced from and what it’s been used for through two generations of my family; my Dad and me that is.

It came from The Fish Shop on The Hill in Kirkby-in-Ashfield and if memory serves the shop was run by a Jean Parks or Parkes who was a friend of my Mother Sheila Robertson (nee Calladine). I recall being taken into the shop as a very young lad in the early 1960’s as we lived close to The Hill in Orchard Road.

It’s been used firstly by my Dad (George Robertson) and since by me for storing bits and bobs in; things that men seem to collect which we think will come in useful one day so to speak.

My Dad kept screws, nails and bolts in it whereas I, in tune with modern day living, keep phone chargers and cables in it.

It may be just an old wooden box but there’s some family and Kirkby-In-Ashfield history in it for me, which I often think of when use it.

We left Kirkby in 1964 when I was but 6 years old.

Kirkby in Ashfield Central Station


My love of railways probably stems as much from this station as anything else which was yards away from where I was born in 14 Orchard Road, Kirkby in 1958.

This photo, which I was delighted to purchase recently, was taken in 1959 and according to the book – Railways Remembered by Martin Weiss published in 2010 by AD Newspapers Ltd – it was a rarely photographed station. Sadly the line is gone and covered in industrial units.

I was told by my parents that I once ran away from home at about 4 years old and after a search was found on the footbridge overlooking this station (that footbridge would have been behind the photographer) awaiting the fish train heading towards Nottingham that came rattling through the station at speed each day. I assume the train came from Grimsby? I was often taken to watch it run through Kirkby by my family.