52 Weeks of Personal Genealogy & History – Toys

This is the seventh challenge in a weekly series from GeneaBloggers called 52 weeks of personal genealogy and  history, suggested  by Amy Coffin,  that invite genealogists to record memories and insights about their own lives for future descendants.  Week 7 – Toys

Probably like alot of boys in the UK in the 1950‘s and early 1960‘s my toy box included Dinky and other model cars.  I didn’t have anything rare or unusual – although if I had kept them and still had the original packaging I guess that they might be quite rare and even valuable today.

I remember visiting my grandparents in Leeds and playing on the floor with my cars.  They had a carpet with a design of squares and quite wide tram lines between the squares.  These tram lines were perfect for roads and junctions.

I also had soldiers, cowboys and indians, horses and farmyard animals.  They were more interesting to play with when I got my wooden fort and a wooden farmyard complete with farmhouse, stable, cowshed and pigsty.

Over the years playing with toy soldiers has become big business and there are now online forums and battle re-enactment associations.

I remember having a small train set and a Scalextric track with racing cars.

However I can’t do a post about toys without mentioning the one thing that provided me and my brother with so much entertainment and drove my mother mad.  The good old Subbuteo table football – although in our case we played it on the floor.

We had our own mini league – just the two of us.  We had maybe four teams each, I just can’t remember exactly, and had a fixture list and kept league tables after each round of games.  We set up our Subbuteo football pitch on the floor behind the sofa and we would play for hours.  We didn’t always play to the rules – we bent them a bit.  Instead of flicking the players we might shove them towards the ball.  We shouted and argued with each other – all in the name of winning of course.

On one occasion our mam must have been having a bad day!!  Me and my brother were having our usual heated discussions about whether there was a foul, an off side or whether one or the other of us had cheated in some way.  Suddenly, out of nowhere, our mam appears complaining about our shouting and arguing.  It had obviously got too much for her and she stamped all over our football pitch breaking and severely injuring many of our star players.  Luckily we had other teams of players that we could use.

This incident has gone down in our family folklore and is now recorded for all to see.



  1. A great post -I laughed out loud at your mam trashing the top players! Most times she probably loved that they kept you amused for hours. I sent your link to my husband for his enjoyment as well.




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