A to Z Challenge Day 15

Day 15 – The Letter O:

Outside Toilets

To todays generation having an outside toilet must sound reminiscent of the Dark Ages.  To those born in the 1950s – 1960s it was the normal thing to have.  It didn’t seem odd because we hadn’t known any different, just having a flushing toilet would have been a luxury to our ancestors.  I was born in the late 1950s in Brighton, on the south coast of England, and we were quite upmarket, having a toilet indoors.  No bath though, just a tin bath hooked up on the wall that would come down for bathtimes and be placed in the kitchen.  The bathroom was at the back of the house, leading off from the kitchen.  It was when we visited my grandparents that the full horror of the outside toilet appeared.  Not for the fainthearted, those scared of spiders or during cold or wet weather.  My father’s mother, Annie Dinnis (Cleeve) lived in Blaker Street, Brighton and her toilet was in an outhouse in the garden.  It looked just like this one:

outside toilet

My mother’s mother also had a toilet in the garden, in a little shed.  This toilet was more conventional.

About Jackie Dinnis

Welcome to my blog where I am enjoying meeting my family - past and present - one at a time. Join me as I learn who my ancestors were, where they lived, what their occupations were and what everyday life was like for them.
This entry was posted in A - Z Blogging Challenge 2013, Annie Cleeve, Beginning life in Hove, CLEEVE and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to A to Z Challenge Day 15

  1. Emma Hull says:

    Urgh, that looks pretty grim!

  2. Suzy Turner says:

    Scouring through all the A to Z posts today, I never thought’s I’d stumble on a post about outside loos! But it is quite fascinating isn’t it? How things have changed so much over the years. I’m a huge fan of Call the Midwife at the moment and I’m loving learning about the way things were in the 1950s.
    Suzy Turner, YA Author

  3. K.Jacqleene says:

    I know all about outhouses. I grew up in the rural area of Ohio. The things we forget about when we romanticize the past eras. Here is my original ode to outhouses:

    Some were fancy, some were not.
    Some had wallpaper, some had rot.
    Some used limestone, some used sprays.
    Some had electricity for the end of day.
    Some had two holes, with fancy seats.
    Some had fans for the summer heat.
    Some used sears catalogs, some used t.p.
    Whatever your choice you didn’t tarry when you peed.

  4. Joe Owens says:

    I used an outdoor john a few times and wonder how more people did not die of disease. They are nasty little collections of filth. I understand the necessity in times of lesser infrastructure, but thank God we moved on past that abomination!

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