A step back in time to one Ripon street’s big parties

Lickley Street residents celebrate VE day in 1945.
Lickley Street residents celebrate VE day in 1945.

Householders of one Ripon street are turning back the clock to organise their first street party since 1977.

And one long term resident in particular is looking forward to the celebration.

Lickley Street residents celebrate George IV's coronation in 1937, in the old Priest Lane boys' school yard.

Lickley Street residents celebrate George IV's coronation in 1937, in the old Priest Lane boys' school yard.

Doreen Metcalfe, who has lived on the street all her life and been involved in at least four street parties, says this will be the first time neighbours have celebrated together since the Silver Jubilee in 1977.

She remembers parties for the Queen’s coronation in 1953, when Lickley Street was named Ripon’s best decorated street.

She has also found photographs of herself and her neighbours celebrating VE day in 1945, George VI’s coronation in 1937.

The 1937 celebrations took place in the yard of the old boys’ school on Priest Lane, where houses are now being built.

Doreen and Les Metcalfe's home on Lickley Street, decorated for the Queen's Silver Jubilee in 1977.

Doreen and Les Metcalfe's home on Lickley Street, decorated for the Queen's Silver Jubilee in 1977.

“I don’t remember 1937 – I was only two years old – but I remember VE day,” said Mrs Metcalfe.

“I had the mumps and my mother made me tie a scarf round my head before I was allowed out to the party.”

“I remember the Silver Jubilee very well though.”

Husband Les remembers all the neighbours coming to the street party with football on the nearby park and commemorative mugs presented to the children.

Lickley Street residents celebrate VE day in 1945. (S)

Lickley Street residents celebrate VE day in 1945. (S)

“We had dancing as well. Someone brought a record player out so we could dance in the street,” he said.

Mr and Mrs Metcalfe and their neighbours are hoping street parties will catch on – they are already planning celebrations for next June’s Diamond Jubilee.

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