Peaceful Suburb

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A historical investigation into the Sea Point beachfront as a public open space throughout the 20th century with special reference to memories of growing up along the Sea Point Promenade by Leila Emdon.

Chapter Two continued – The growth of a suburb: the Development of Sea Point in the late 19th century to the 1950s

<< previous Growing up in Sea Point 1930s-1950s

A Peaceful Suburb

Sea Point Beachfront

The Sea Point Beachfront 1930’s Photo: Shiela Vaughan ©

Growing up in Sea Point during the 1940s and 1950s seems to have been very simple and unstressed. “There were no shops, you ordered things from the grocer and he delivered.”22

“There were a couple of Greek cafes, and they sold small little things like cold drinks and ice creams and cigarettes. There were no super markets. Little Jacks was the first little super market. We lived on main road so we had a grocer there. You phoned the grocer and order what you wanted and they would send it over to you. There was a butcher, a fish shop and dry cleaner. It was a very unstressed lifestyle.”23

“The total population of the area was a fraction of that of today, and in the days where only the fairly well off could afford a car to travel across the Peninsula it was a suburb that belonged almost exclusively to its own people. As children then we were blissfully unaware of the sad reason for the absence of other races in our beaches and our parks. The proportion of children to adults was far higher then, and there were always enough neighbourhood children in the streets and the beaches for unending interaction and play.” 24

“We used to go sit by the palm trees on the beach front and picnic. It was quite and peaceful and safe. We could walk at night and alone.”25

22 Joe Maureberger, 31st Augus 2008, recorded interview
23 Sonia Kirsch, 20th September 2008, recorded interview
24 Daniel Vaughan, 11 October 2008, interview via e-mail
25 Rosemary Magid, 10 October 2008, Recorded interview

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