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Bream Schools c 1910

Bream Schools 1910  (53k)

The Hard-Up Tree is on the right behind the lamppost. Men would gather here to wait for the hooter at the Princess Royal Colliery. If the hooter sounded, it meant that there would be work that day. No hooter meant no work and the men would remain at the tree and stay hard-up until they next had work. Princess Royal Colliery finally closed in 1962.
The piles of gravel beneath the trees were almost certainly used to repair the roads as potholes developed. As W.A. Camm described in his book : "At first cartloads of large red stones would be brought in, stacked into large oblong heaps and at a later date broken up by the council stone breaker man into pieces about the size of a man's fist (Old Man Frouen the last villager to do this kind of work). Now it was ready for use, along would come the road-gang giving rise to quite a scene once work got underway with a giant steamroller going backwards and forwards over the laid out stone laced with grit, rolling it until it became a reasonable surface.."

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