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Alfred P Laurent, basket worker aged 73, being interviewed by an unidentified man about school and home life 1908 - 1914. Includes: Recollections of La Motte Street School - harsh discipline, corporal punishment, dedicated teachers; details of daily routine - buying food etc; enjoyed school, learnt a wide variety of subjects, lots of homework; remebers most adults of the time were illiterate; started working on Saturdays at 9 years of age for a butcher, Averty; paid 9d a day; rebelled against social injustices at an early age; rembers Dean Falle and the soup kitchens he operated in Victoria Street; low wages, hard work, basic goods not cheap in relation to wages - goes into detail about earnings and prices of food; brought up in a slum - large building on Regent Road, Old Theatre Place; feels that this made him appreciate beauty more; started working in the fields from age 12; remembers people getting drunk as an escape; wife beating common and not regarded as serious; family discipline was severe; fathers were feared but respected, mothers were loved, feels that now children love both parents but don't respect them; also went to First Tower School; left school at 13 and worked for his father, who was also a basket maker; very long hours; very large families - had 10 siblings; no shortage of jobs; no unemployment benefits - some charities in churches helped unemployed people; no social services; rembers a school trip to Guernsey in 1910; fetching coal; public transport by buses (horse drawn), leisured people had their own carriages; well-off people were proud of saying they had never worked; rembers following military bands; delivering some papers for a soldier called Sharp who lived in La Motte Street; rembers seeing a phonograph (record player) for the first time; rode in the second motor car in Jersey when working as a cutler's assistant, aged 14; saw the first aeroplane in Jersey land on the beach at St Aubin's; does not miss the 'good old days' - feels that the world is much kinder to grow up in now, makes many contrasts between his own childhood and those of young people today. Recorded in 1973. (orginal audio tape, JERSM/1988/428/5, is missing)

Reference: R/03/A/20

Date: 1973