Our venues

Bath night

young woman bathing 2 young children in the kitchen sink

© Stephen Shakeshaft

"Saturday night was bath night in the kitchen sink. Children were lined up and one sat on the draining board whilst the first was washed, then dried in front of the fire. Yes, it was 1980."

Stephen Shakeshaft

Reminiscence sessions

A number of reminiscence sessions were held during the exhibition in which people discussed the events, places and people captured in Stephen Shakeshaft's evocative photographs. Here are some examples of the responses to this picture:

"I remember when I was little my mum washing my little sister in the sink. When I had children my mum washed her grand children in her sink - a family tradition."

"I remember getting washed in the sink and especially getting dried by the fire on a Sunday night."

"The photograph of the children having a wash in the sink brings back so many memories. I particularly remember my mum using a large block of green soap."

"I remember as a child, being bathed by 'me' mum on a Saturday afternoon. It took place either in the kitchen sink (a 'lean to' with a corrugated roof) or in a galvanized bath tub in front of the fire. The tub was hung from a nail in the yard throughout the week."

"I always prided myself on being brought up working class. Seeing these photos here, I realise we were middle class - we had a bath to use every Friday - no sink for us!"

"The picture of the mother bathing her children reminded me of bath time at home. The tin bath in front of the fire, later progressing to a bath. Having to take turns and hoping to be first as we had to share the same water."

"From a family of six, as kids we had a tin bath that mum and dad used to put us in one after the other and wash us. This was in front of a blazing fire in the living room. We lived in Myrtle Street on top of a wool shop."