I was contacted by Gil Higham about his youth, dancing at Chick Hibberts amongst other places. This is his post: I found this site by accident as I am 96+ years old a lot of my contemporaries have departed. I lived in Droylsden, off Edge Lane close to Openshaw. I went to Wheler Street School from 1936 to 39 passed 11+ and went to Ardwick Central in Devonshire Street, Ardwick. I left in 43 and began my intro to Openshaw. My best mate was Francis 'Yank' Turner and together we found the billiard hall round the corner from the Alhambra cinema where we spent a lot of time. It was inevitable that the dance hall was also found, Chick Hibberts as it was known. We went there on Sat. Nights what a joy big band playing all the latest hits and me dancing the night away. I had the good fortune to meet my future wife I spotted her across the dance floor and spoke those magic words 'Do you come here often'. That was the clincher, I took here home to Droylsden and that was a love that lasted 61yrs until she passed away in 2009, a loss I have not yet got over. We went to Chicks most Saturdays and also Sundays when the Communist party held dances, as well as Belle Vue on Fridays when bands like Ted Heath, Edmundo Ros and Squadronaires were featured, I could also list Ashton Palais, The Premier, Droylsden Co-op, Ritz, Plaza Levenshulme, Finigans. What a joy it was, simple cheap and immensely enjoyable, I think of those times now and think how lucky I have been. I was also a keen jitterbugger and had a special partner, Joan Baines at Chicks, my Anne would not do that frantic dance. We were engaged when I was 17, bought the ring from Alf Davies in Ashton for the princely sum of £32.10. That was July and the following Feb. I was called up and spent the next three years in the army, two of which in India and Singapore. Married in 48. Happy days. I hope this diatribe has not been too boring. TAKE CARE AND KEEP WELL
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