Sunday, 12 September 2010

Roots Television - A look back at how we used to live

Today I watched a short film on Roots Television.
It was made in 1948 and was aimed at showing what life was like for a young boy growing up in York at this time.
This year I spent a week on holiday in York (not for the first time). It was interesting to contrast the picture I have today with that of 50 years ago.
The view from the city walls has changed remarkably little, possibly due to much of the area having protected status.
The railway station has changed and we no longer travel in trains with compartments (usually) as we did even in the sixties when I was a child. For longer journeys we even have air conditioning in the trains. Beeching cuts in the sixties mean we cannot get a train to Whitby from York so our journey this year will have taken a lot longer.
Whitby itself has changed in the number and type of boats in the harbour. The fishermen, if there are any left, do not sit there mending their nets.
I cannot comment on the schools.
However homelife has certainly changed as many families no longer sit down together for their evening meal and few that do would be listening to the radio.
Television would be more likely today and many will eat a meal with a tray on their lap whilst watching the television. The traditional tea will have been replaced by the ready made meal and the stove by the microwave. In our family for one we have not yet done away with the traditional cup of tea, still a firm favorite with many of the english.
Some houses still have the open coal fires so common in post war britain but with the creation of smoke free zones the majority of us now live in centrally heated homes.
How many of us or our descendants will look back in another 50 years and reflect on how life has changed?