Grandad and Grandma Bryan

William Bryan in middle age

My mother’s father, Frederick William Bryan, was born on the 1st September 1892.

He had did various things in his life. He started his working life as a miner, then served in the First World war, where he  was gassed.  Later, at various times he had had a fish-and-chip shop, a grocery store, and two public houses. He was also a master baker at one time, and was well known for his muffins and pikelets.

Most of this was before I was born, though I can remember the public houses. Grandma and Grandad seemed to have itchy feet as they never stayed long in one place. Their longest stay, I think, was in their later years when they settled in Hensall near Goole.

I remember him as very easy-going man. He always seemed cheerful and liked to joke about things.  Maybe he  wasn’t always like that, but whenever we went to visit he was.

Grandad with two of his dogs.

Grandad also bred small dogs and had been a judge at Crufts. He was very keen on his dogs, which I think were Brussels Griffons. I remember asking him once what breed one of his dogs was, and he told me it was an Afghan hound, which I thought was true until I realised he was teasing. We didn’t visit them very often but when we did I always enjoyed it.

After his wife died, Grandad came to live with my Mum and Dad in Barnby Dun, but he never really got over Grandma’s death, and Mum’s ways weren’t like Grandma’s. He died on the 4th October 1970, aged 78.

In the 1960s Grandad recorded an interview with the BBC recalling some of his memories of the First World War.

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