Interview by Margaret Cooper in 2000 for the “Oxton Now & Then” publication.
Gemma Bell, who lives on Elmcroft, Oxton, with her parents and brother, Ashley. Aged 10.
“I remember when we decided to move [to Oxton], I was a bit upset because I didn’t want to move because I was scared I wasn’t going to settle in and make friends. I soon made friends at [Lowdham] school though”.
“[Our house in Elmcroft] was nice and old. Every weekend we came to visit [Oxton] when we lived in Rainworth, we came to visit Nan and I used to go across here with Nana because she used to turn the fire on for Nell [Hillhouse, nee Strutt, the previous occupier] and do things for her. The garden was like a jungle, I was only this high and the grass was this big. We had to put some new turf down. We had to dig [the garden] and I remember finding a gold bracelet there and we found this old tractor toy that must have been there when Nell was there. I can remember by the [front] window sill there, she used to have a coffee table thing and her room was quite bare, quite bare”.
“I like [Oxton] because I like the countryside and animals and Oxton has quite a lot of countryside, its got Calverton woods and things”.
“I used to [go to Church] quite regularly. I used to sing in the choir, then I started ice-skating and it was on the same day”.
“[Near] my Nan’s house there’s this bit of green and I go biking round there, that’s where I went to ride my bike without stabilisers. I sometimes go down with my mum on my roller blades because there’s this nice bit behind the village hall where its nice and smooth, so we go down there. A couple of weeks back my mummy started to let me go to the park on my own. But if I went on the bike I didn’t take Ellie [our dog] to the park”
“Some times I wake up and I think [that] I don’t want to go to school. I like doing English and doing stories and I hopefully want to go to Seely school [Calverton] because my friends are going there and I don’t want to leave my friends”.
“When I grow up I would like to do a bit of animal care, you know like RSPCA. There’s people that go and look after the animals but don’t actually do any injections because I don’t really like seeing animals having operations”.
“I love going abroad, we went to Ibiza twice and we’ve just been to Cyprus and that was really nice”.