1960s: On Sundays it was empty. Trolley buses from here went down Leeds Road and Bradford Road, there were sheltered stops where we got on the buses for Leeds Road and home. There was a circular taxi office made of wood (between Estate Buildings and the now-Head of Steam). The Alassio Café (in the Tite Buildings opposite Ramsden Estate Buildings) had a great juke box and was one of the few places open on a Sunday. The Italian fountain has since fallen victim to acid rain and all the buildings were black. There were no shops on the Square so people didn’t bother to explore it.
In the 1980s-90s modern jazz bands played at the Head of Steam, with mainly traditional jazz (Cherry Tree Jazz Band) on Sundays at the Station Tavern (now King’s Head). My band, Swing of Things, played at the Station Tavern, for a few months in the early 1990s, but we didn’t bring enough of an extra crowd, so the landlord told us to go! The same pub used to regularly put on rock n roll and rockabilly bands for a good few years.
I think of St George’s Square as a bit of an ugly place (it still is), but I’ve enjoyed the festivals, giants, big balloons and concerts that have taken place there … a good use of all that space! Doesn’t mind the buses going round, it’s a continuation of previous usage.STAN SAGAN
Stan also told us about his first train trip from Huddersfield – it was probably to New Brighton in 1967 and going on the Mersey ferry but he also remembers going as far as Manchester and back on a platform ticket. Luckily, he says, no inspectors got on!