The winter of 1963 in Redwick

- Douglas Howells

We skated on the reen because the reen was frozen over. We used to walk on the reen because it was all frozen over. And next door to us, they didn't have no water for about five or six weeks. Their water was frozen. And we used to have a water pipe going across the reen and it used to be exposed and it used to freeze up every morning. So we used to go up with a blowlamp and warm this pipe up to thaw it so we could have some water. And we used to run a hose pipe from my place to next door and fill their bath tub so they could have water to wash and things. For weeks it was like that. [There were no skates] we just had shoes. It was all frozen over. That was the first time I did it and the only time. Because the reen used to go straight across the front of our house. Don’t know the name of it. Most of the family and other people used to come around and skate on the reens, bit of fun. No one ever fell through.

[In the summer] we used to have a canoe and we used to put it on an old pram and we used to push that up towards Magor and there’s Windmill reen and we used to put the canoe in there. Quite a big reen. And we used to canoe on there. quite wide the Windmill if you know it. We used to canoe on there. Used to have great fun down there. I think my father bought the canoe. Only one seat.