Gibraltar is a fabulous place for children, and for parents to bring up children – (it’s also fabulous for adults like me who never grew up); I say that last bit tongue in cheek (because in my profession we often say that ‘brilliant Childcare workers never grow up’). Now at the ripe old age of 61 I still work with children and young people and have absolutely no intention of growing up.
* (Carol holding Sam as Tracey looks on)
Readers will know from my earlier writings that my own childhood took place in the cold back streets of Newcastle during the 50s and 60s and so (with that in mind) I loved the idea of my children having the opposite – and you couldn’t get more opposite than Gibraltar; indeed many of my Gibraltarian readers tell me of halcyon days during their childhoods and you need only to do the minimum of research to discover that life for children and young people on the Rock is still full of sunshine and opportunities.
In 1976 our children were very little (one age 3 the other just a few months) and one of their favourite things to do was to go to the beach or somewhere else they could paddle in the water and cool off from the Mediterranean sun. Gibraltar has six absolutely gorgeous beaches and naturally we spent a lot of time on all of them; my personal favourite beach was always (and still is) Catalan Bay but we did chop and change often to give the children variety.
But as well as beaches (and I do have some beach anecdotes planned for later in these memoirs) we also took the children to places where they could paddle to cool off; Nuffield Pool was very much a regular haunt and its brilliant to see how much it has been redeveloped today although I don’t think it’s called Nuffield Pool now.
But one other place we often went to was (if I remember rightly) somewhere called (I think) Montague Bay (?) which was just a short walk down Queensway from HMS Rooke. It was a sort of enclosed concrete quayside with deck chairs on it and where you could climb down steel ladders for a dip in the sea water. The problem is though that when I’ve asked people in Gibraltar recently about it they don’t recognise the name and when I visited the Rock in May 2016 it was no longer there due to developments. My memory is fading but I think it may have been somewhere around where the Waterfront/Marina is now.
All of the photos on this page are all taken at ‘Montague’ and so if any readers recognise the place or can shed more light I’d be grateful. I think one of the main attractions of the place was that it was so near that we could pop down in the evenings after I finished work. Halcyon days 🙂
One of the things I truly love about Gibraltar is that my children had some of their early years there.
PLEASE SEE THE READERS MEMORIES PAGE FOR MORE PHOTOS AND READERS MEMORIES OF MONTAGUE BATHING PAVILLION