5. Working in the Brickworks

Colliers Arms, Craig-Cefn-Parc, Swansea, 1890s
The Colliers Arms, Craig-cefn-parc, Swansea, in the 1890s. Women weren't allowed into public houses.

You remember women working in the brickyard?

Yes, yes, of course.

What sort of work did they do then?

Making bricks, girl! Yes. Mind, I was very small then but I can remember. 'Course, I tell you what, I remember an old woman there and she used to smoke a clay pipe and that’s always stuck in my mind. Oh yes women. Nothing for women to work in the brickyard, as they call the brickyard. Making bricks…Oh yes. Married women. Oh aye.

So not all women stayed in the house once they got married?

Not all, though I mean some perhaps. Of course, you see some used to like a little drink, you know. Because I know there was one poor soul used to live up by here, harmless enough poor soul. But I’ve seen her going through having her little drink, you know. And she was smoking a pipe, that one was too. Living in the terrace.

Mrs H. M. Walters, Llwynypia, born 1895.

MWL archive no. 7022.