For Cod, and Ulster – Northern Ireland’s Enduring Love of Chips Shops

This isn’t really about the Jamison family history, but it’s about a serious subject nonetheless; the relationship between NI and its chip shops. On mainland Britain, the chip shop now faces some serious competition from the plethora of Asian takeaways, kebab shops, Peri Peri joints and fried chicken shacks, but in Northern Ireland, apart from the eternal Chinese takeaway, chip shops rule supreme, at least outside the larger metropolitan areas.

During our recent trip along the Antrim coast, we looked forward to the great punny names many of them boast, as well as the excellent quality of the fare.

Here’s some of the best names we encountered this July, and where to find them; needless to say, we didn’t have a bad chip!

Chip Ahoy – Portavogie

Flash in the Pan – Bushmills

The Hip Chip -Bushmills

The Codsway – Bushmills (really, there must be an insatiable demand for fish and chips in this modest Antrim town!)

The Frying Squad– Bangor

For Cod and Ulster – Belfast

A note on the lingo – often, a portion of chips is referred to in NI as a “chip” so you may face the bewildering but delightful options that we did of “did you want a chip, a family chip, or a wee large chip?”

The Codsway Chip Shop, Bushmills
The Codsway Chip Shop, Bushmills, Northern Ireland
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Jamison Garage on Shore Road Belfast- Updated Picture(s)

I talked about the most recent picture I had of the family garage on the Shore Road, Belfast in a previous post ; the picture from the 1950’s was sourced from the Belfast Forum, an invaluable source of history, pictures and local knowledge for all things Belfast; there’s a particularly great (and very long!) thread about Belfast’s Shore Road: you need to create an account to comment or post, but it’s well worth it if you have any interest in past or present Belfast.

I stay in touch with some of the posters on the forum, one of whom posted the picture below of the garage, sandwiched between 265 and 269 Shore Road; the picture was taken from a video still filmed sometime in the mid to late 1960s.

265shoreroad1960s
265-269 Shore Rd approx 1966

You can see no.269 Shore Road most clearly; this was the left hand of the two houses that sat on their own on the corner of Oakmount Drive.

The opening between the two houses was the entrance to the car repair garage, at the rear of the buildings. I lived in no. 265 (just out of shot on the right-hand side of the picture) until around 1975. We have no family pictures of the houses or the garage, so I’m very grateful for any images that turn up online, and for those people kind enough to alert me to them.

The picture is also interesting as it shows a passing trolleybus, the number 10 which travelled along Shore Road to Whitewell Road, near the zoo. The trolleybus network closed down in Belfast in 1968 so we know the picture predates this. The trolleybuses had disappeared by the time we lived at 265, but otherwise very little had changed from the picture taken in the mid’60s.

Google map of the area now:

With thanks to Tommy and Jimmy for these and some other fanstastic pictures from the Shore Road area. If anyone has more pictures of the garage or houses at 265-269 Shore Road, please do get in touch, I would be delighted to see them!

UPDATE

Jimmy posted the video of the Shore Road to Youtube that the above picture was grabbed from; I’m writing another post for that, but I managed to get a still showing the right-hand house that we lived in, no. 265:

265shoreroad1960s2

 

And here they are together:

 

 

 

Family Research Visit to Belfast June 2016

I’ve written this up quite a while after we actually visited, as family things got in the way, but it was a very useful visit and might be of help if you’re considering researching your own Belfast family history.

We took the car and went by ferry, straight into Belfast harbour. We splashed out, staying two nights at the famous Europa Hotel in town, recommended!

Apart from catching up and taking trips out to Portrush and other spots along the coast, I had some specific research in mind that took me to the Belfast Central Library Newspaper archive.

This research was for two reasons; firstly to fill in some gaps around family events in Belfast during the Troubles, and also as primary research for the novel I’m (still) writing, And The Buntings Flew. The novel is based in 1970s Belfast and those of you who have read my blog posts will know that it’s at least partly autobiographical.

My research at the newspaper archive bore some fruit, and was a blast from the past, as the records are nearly all stored on microfiche, which I haven’t used since the early 1990s.  There’s a modest fee to print out pages (10p a sheet I think) and it was incredibly useful, and the staff very helpful.

This success was tinged with sadness and uncertainty; the Troubles left very few families untouched, and I now have to contemplate and investigate the new information I uncovered.

Despite any unease I felt while reading through the microfiches from 1975 and 76, they did offer, for a writer, a wonderful window on the past. I was particularly interested in the world news, and closer to home, the adverts; in 1975 the Northern Ireland government had members warning that if the UK voted to join the EEC (Common Market, and we did), that it would grow from a trade agreement to a federation of European states with a  loss of UK sovereignty, which was a very topical read!

I’ll be posting some more about some of the information I found in the archive library, but for now, I just wanted to post some pictures from our trip of the wonderful places to visit in Belfast and the rest of County Antrim.

I’m also pleased to relate that I brought back lots of Thompsons Tea and vegetable roll, both Northern Irish treasures that I wrote about in my article lauding the Foods of Ulster!

 

Filling in some gaps – new information on the descendants of William McDowell Jamison

I had some very exciting news yesterday courtesy of Nevin over at NALIL; Nevin put me and my cousin Barbara in touch with Jennifer, who is a great, great grand-daughter of William McDowell Jamison, the earliest Jamison I’ve managed to trace in our family tree.

Jennifer and Nevin have provided loads of information for my descendent chart, and I hope we gave some to Jennifer in return about our line! (Jennifer’s great-grandfather William and my grandfather Charles (Fred) were brothers, although there was quite an age gap between them, hence I suppose an extra generation slipping in!)

I have updated the Descendant chart; additions were under the family of William Jamison Jnr (son of Old William and Annie) his wife Mary Elizabeth (Betty) Cousins

Children of William Jnr and Betty Cousins:

  • Christina (Jennifer’s grandmother, also known as Nan, registered at birth as Cousins but known
    as Jamison at school)
  • Laura Willemina Jamison
  • Josephina Annetta Jamison (Netty)
  • Harold Hewar (Huer?) Jamison
  • Charles Henry McDole (McDowell?) Jamison (Harry)
  • Oswald Alexander Jamison (Alec)
  • Frederick William Henry Jamison (Billy)
  • Mary Elizabeth Eleanor Jamison (Alma) who died at nine months old due to a heart problem.
  • And one more possibly who died as a baby

Christina (Nan) Cousin’s children (unsure of father’s names)

  • Yvonne Cousins
  • Allistair Cousins
  • Norman? Cousins  – died young of a head injury related condition*
  • Laura Cousins – mother of Jennifer

I have more information such as spouse names to add to the chart; this is a wonderful revelation as we only really had information relating to the family of my grandfather Charles Frederick Jamison – Fred was one of four siblings, but one died as a teenager (Oswald Huer), one as a young woman (Harriet Anne), so its great to have such detailed information for William Jnr’s family.I also learnt that William Jnr’s back complaints were as a result of a World War 1 injury sustained when a horse kicked him during his time in the Royal Irish Rifles.

Many thanks to Jennifer and Nevin, and to Barbs for staying up while we pieced it all together!

Margaret

Jamisons of the Giant’s Causeway – Nevin’s Blog

One of the first really good leads I had on my journey to trace back the Jamisons, when faced with a dearth of real information, was a fabulous post by Nevin Taggart in his blog NALIL (North Antrim Local Interest List), a local history, culture and genealogy site with a wealth of fantastic info. The post is here: Jamisons of the Giant’s Causeway

NALIL is a great place to start your own search for all things North Antrim, or just for a great read!

Many thanks to Nevin

Jamison Family Garage, Shore Road, Belfast

shoreroadgarageMany thanks to the Belfast forum, where this wonderful picture was posted; it shows most of the family home and garage, which were situated on Shore Road, North Belfast, alas demolished in the 1980’s. Fred and Eliza Jamison moved their young family here from Lisburn in the 1950s’ and Fred set up business as Loughside garage, living in the adjacent house. Apart from the trams, this is how I remember the house and garage when I lived there during the early 1970’s.

This is a wonderful picture and really helped me re-establish details which had become a bit hazy. If you own the copyright to this picture of if you have any more of it, please do let me know!

Margaret

Welcome to our new WordPress Home!

Bushmills Distillery, Bushmills, County Antrim, Northern IrelandHaving created a WordPress blog for my writing (please check it out! Margaret McGoverne), and been very impressed with the features available, I’ve decided to move the family tree website (jamisonsonline.co.uk) to WordPress; I was having difficulty updating the site to be compatible with Safari etc, and this way I can concentrate on content instead of html and coding!

I’m in the process of moving the content from the old site and from the Blogger blog, so expect to see lots of stuff drop in here in the coming weeks.

Margaret x

Updated Details for Eliza Jamison; Dates and Last Place of Abode

I’ve received a copy of Eliza’s death certificate today, and not only does it confirm her age at the time of her death (54), and the date (4/12/1962), there is also a bonus of her last registered address: Hillview Avenue, Newtonabbey, Belfast BT36. Below is a googlemap of the street (I think it’s the house with cream walls and dark brown windows and door).

It’s great to have these details, which I will now check with Uncle Harold, and possibly Uncle Donald,who hopefully can verify them.

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Visit to Antrim June 2009

From: 6th July 2009

Our visit to Antrim a few weeks ago was fantastic, and we managed to get to quite a few places associated with the Jamisons, including Bushmills, Giant’s Causeway (including the school there) and Belfast.

I hope to be sent a picture from the Causeway school from the period when our grandfather and his siblings attended; as soon as I get anything I’ll share it here!

Margaret

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