When it got dark the next night, we got ready to go out and continue our carolling. Mum watched us with keen eyes as we donned our coats and scarves.

‘And where do yer think you three are gooin this time o’ night?’ she asked sternly.

‘We’re going carol singing’ Frankie replied, defiantly.

‘That’s all right’ Dad said ‘but be back in bed before we get home’

‘Yes, Dad’ we replied in unison.

We ran out and turned up towards the street towards the George and Dragon. I was glad Mum and Dad hadn’t asked what part we were going to because this street was forbidden territory. When we arrived, Liza and I started ‘Hark the Herald Angels Sing’ again but we only got as far as Hark when I felt a hard thump on my back.

‘Don’t sing that one’ Frankie said ‘You know what happened last time. Let’s sing Noel’

Halfpennies and pennies came flying through the door and when I picked them up I counted tenpence ha’penny in all. We showed our gratitude by singing it again only louder. But when Liza reached the high notes she gave an off key shriek which brought George out with the warning to ‘clear off’.

Frankie turned on Liza as we walked away. ‘You spoil everything with yer cracked voice. I wish I’d brought one of Mum’s gobstoppers along for you!’

The First Noel

Listen to the song that Kathleen sang at The George & Dragon at Christmas, with Liza and Frankie.