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#686976 - 21st Apr 2012 5:54pm Strongman "Bob Strong" Birkenhead Market??
Patchthedog Offline
Member

Registered: 10th Jul 2011
Posts: 53
Loc: Wirral
Hi,I'm in my fiftes and I remember my dad telling me about some strongman type of act at the old birkenhead market.My dad also mentioned that there were other circus type acts there as well,he might have made it up to entertain me as well,were there any of these things there?,it would have late 20's to 30's I guess.

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#686982 - 21st Apr 2012 6:29pm Re: Strongman "Bob Strong" Birkenhead Market?? [Re: Patchthedog]
derekdwc Offline


Forum Veteran

Registered: 13th Oct 2008
Posts: 5024
Loc: Birkenhead
Vaguely remember at the Pier Head a fellow who used to have a pavement slab on his chest which another fellow used smash with a sledgehammer

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#686984 - 21st Apr 2012 6:40pm Re: Strongman "Bob Strong" Birkenhead Market?? [Re: derekdwc]
bert1 Offline

Wiki Veteran

Registered: 27th Nov 2008
Posts: 7948
Loc: tranmere
Some of the stall holders on the outside market were certainly like circus acts, there were some expert jugglers and very funny men. It was their way of gathering a crowd to sell their wares, providing you never bought anything, it was brilliant free entertainment.


Edited by bert1 (21st Apr 2012 6:40pm)
_________________________
God help us,
Come yourself,
Don't send Jesus,
This is no place for children.


Bertieone.

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#686992 - 21st Apr 2012 7:09pm Re: Strongman "Bob Strong" Birkenhead Market?? [Re: bert1]
chriskay Offline
Forum Veteran

Registered: 25th Oct 2007
Posts: 4868
Loc: shropshire
Yes, and one of the favourite tricks, especially on a Saturday evening, was for them to smash a few plates, shouting "well, I'm not taking 'em back". People couldn't stand to see stuff broken and would start to buy.
_________________________
Carpe diem.

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#686999 - 21st Apr 2012 7:19pm Re: Strongman "Bob Strong" Birkenhead Market?? [Re: derekdwc]
gypsyjune Offline
Forum Master

Registered: 22nd Feb 2010
Posts: 3312
Loc: birkenhead
Sounds like a normal night in Birkenhead these days ,sorry if i`m off topic

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#687157 - 22nd Apr 2012 9:45am Re: Strongman "Bob Strong" Birkenhead Market?? [Re: Patchthedog]
yoller Online   content
Smartchild

Registered: 7th Dec 2008
Posts: 479
Loc: Cheshire
From Carol E Bidston’s book Birkenhead In Times Past (1978), writing about the square at the back of the market: ‘At one time, around the 1870s, a fair used to be held in the Square on a Saturday night. According to contemporary reports, the boys of the neighbourhood used to enjoy watching the smashing of crockery by the Rock Auctioneer, who, when he couldn’t get the price for his wares, threw them on to the cobblestones. At election times during the last century, hustings were erected in the Square. The proceedings were rough and at times riotous, but generally good-humoured.’

… I remember as a child in the 50s, when we used to go over on the ferry to Liverpool of a Sunday, there would often be an escapologist performing on the Pier Head.
His assistant would secure him in a straitjacket and wrap chains around him, which were locked together. Then he’d wriggle and writhe on the ground and somehow get free. It was really impressive. The audience would then throw money into a hat.
However, such acts were illegal and the two performers sometimes had to do an even faster escape act when they saw a policeman coming along!

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