Oldham Historical Research Group

'Oldham Stories'

     'Oldham Stories'
by Mary Dickinson

'Gas Tar'

In the old days the gaps in the cobblestones were filled with gas tar and when the weather was hot it would melt and go very soft. The children used to make gas tar balls and use it like plasticene.

One morning when my mother was getting us all ready for school my brother Richard called out that he couldn't get out of bed. When she went up to him she found that he was stuck to the sheets and blankets with tar. He had taken a ball of it to bed with him and it had melted during the night. My mother had to cut his hair andthe bedding to get him free. She used a whole packet of lard to clean him up.

None of us ever took gas tar to bed again!

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