Twopence to Cross the Mersey
And, Liverpool MissBook - 2010
First and second parts of Helen Forresters poignant autobiography.
Twopence was the price of the ferry-boat between Liverpool and Birkenhead. A tiny sum but an impassable barrier for the poor of Liverpool - desperate to escape the city's grinding poverty.
When Helen Forrester's father went bankrupt in 1930, she and her six siblings were forced from their comfortable middle-class life into utmost destitution in Depression-ridden Liverpool. The running of the household and the care of her younger siblings all fell to twelve-year old Helen. In slum surroundings and with little food or support from her feckless parents, Helen was forced on her own resources.
Told with compassion, humour and a remarkable lack of self-pity, this is a fascinating picture of life in Britain before the Welfare State and the moving story one young girl's courage.