You tell us what makes a Mackem

Sunderland Echo - - News - By Kevin Clark kevin.clark@north­ Twit­ter: @kevinclarkjp

Na­tional Mackem Day ar­rives in the city to­mor­row.

But what makes a proud Mackem?

And what are those spe­cial mem­o­ries, the sights, sounds and smells that can whisk you back to Wearside, no mat­ter where in the world you may be?

Ahead of the big cel­e­bra­tion this week­end, we asked what you think makes you a Mackem.

Here are some of your best sug­ges­tions for mark­ing the oc­ca­sion, and what makes you proud to be a Wear­sider:

Ch­eryl Forster is a girl af­ter our own heart: “Join­ing the Chip­per Club in the Echo when you were a kid. I thought I’d re­ally made it when I got my mem­bers card and a lit­tle badge through the post.”

For Kim Clark, it’s all about the senses: “Loved the smell of the hops from Vaux back in the day go­ing into the town. Maws mince pies and mushy peas .”

Val Lunn will sym­pa­thise: “Been south nearly 20 years but still miss the smell of Vaux.”

Moe Craik re­mem­bers one of our long-lost shops: “Jo­plings and the lit­tle climb­ing frame in chil­dren’s shoe de­part­ment and get­ting lost and hav­ing my name an­nounced on the tan­noy then get­ting wrong off mam for fol­low­ing some­body else with a navy coat on.”

Jes­sica Wilkin­son’s mem­o­ries will strike a chord with an en­tire gen­er­a­tion of Wear­siders: “Go­ing to the leisure cen­tre on a Satur­day af­ter­noon for a swim, pur­posely ig­nor­ing the lights when it showed it was time for your coloured band to come out and just plead­ing ig­no­rance. And grab­bing a good spot for when the wave ma­chine came on.”

Mark Bird­sall and Ann Wills have fond mem­o­ries of days and nights out in town.

“Annabel’s or Ku Club,” said Mark, while Ann opted for: “Fi­nos and the Rink.”

Andy Woods re­called : “Go­ing to Woolworths to buy a LP”, while Jean Mitchell Wynd re­mem­bered : “C&A, Binns, loved them stores Woolworths, loved to see the big dray horses round Sun­der­land.”

Claire Fos­ter was all about the joy of re­turn­ing to Wearside: “Com­ing home, see­ing Pen­shaw Mon­u­ment first and get­ting to arm punch all the losers in the car.”

Hilda David­son re­mem­bered: “The rink and the noise from the ship­yards, the smell of hops from Vaux,” while Ca­role Gal­lagher re­called : “The dray horses and seag­ulls.”

And Joe Walker misses “Go­ing to the match at Roker Park in the 50s & 60s.”

Ann Wills and Hilda Dav­i­son both have fond mem­o­ries of the Crowtree Leisure Cen­tre rink

Vaux Brew­ery and its drays are a pop­u­lar mem­ory for many.

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