BiRD - Birkbeck Research Data

    Interview with Jane Williamson (formerly Tooher) in Crystal Palace, London, England 25.02.2019.

    Cite as: Beecher, Ruth (2021): Interview with Jane Williamson (formerly Tooher) in Crystal Palace, London, England 25.02.2019. Birkbeck College, University of London. doi: https://doi.org/10.18743/DATA.00114

    Description

    Jane Williamson was born in London in 1959, the second eldest of five children. Jane’s father had moved to London from Birr, County Offaly. He served in the British Army during the Second World War, in the King’s Liverpool Regiment. He spent most of the war in Jamaica. During her childhood, both of her parents worked in the police force having met whilst working at Streatham Police Station.

    As the eldest daughter, Jane describes carrying out a significant amount of the household responsibilities, especially after her mother’s death in 1977, when Jane was seventeen. Jane shares fond memories of her schooling at Coloma Convent Girls’ School in Croydon, studying A-Levels in Geography, Classical Civilisation and Economics.

    Jane shares memories of trips back to Ireland in the summer from the age of eight, she describes her initial visits to Ireland as “a shock to the system” due to the difference in amenities available as well as the very rural location of her family’s farm. Jane shares fond memories of going to dances as a teenager at Dooly’s Hotel and the County Arms Hotel in Birr.

    Although her school urged her to apply for university, Jane’s father urged her to get a job after she left school and she began working for Social Services in Croydon. She subsequently worked for Southwark Council and they later funded her training as a social worker. Jane also had part-time jobs during this time, such as waitressing, working in an estate agent’s and setting up an independent fashion company with friends.

    Jane describes living at home until she was around 27 years of age, navigating long-term romantic relationships during that time and the dynamic between her father and her partners. She describes an informal network of aunts and older women, such as neighbours, colleagues and boyfriends’ mums, who supported Jane as maternal figures following the death of her mother.

    Jane reflects on the experiences of her extended family that she visited in Ireland, including the difficulties of living in a very rural area. Jane tells the story of her father’s eldest sister who, in the aftermath of her own mother’s death, became pregnant and subsequently married but was cut off from her family and then suffered the loss of her baby. Jane reflects on the changes in Ireland since her visits as a young woman in terms of wealth, culture and diversity and shares the memory of the first time her husband visited and was welcomed by her extended family.

    Previews


    1 - Audio Interview with Jane Williamson (formerly Tooher) in Crystal Palace, London, England 25.02.2019; Interview Accession No: 0UNA-U1X0007 (0UNA-U1X0007XX-0001M0.mp3)

    Collection Method

    Úna Gan A Gúna Irish Women’s Digital History Project

    Interviews with a range of women born in Ireland during the twentieth century or those with Irish connections. The aim was to gather the stories, memories and opinions of Irish women born in each decade of the twentieth century, about their experiences between the approximate ages of 15 and 25. The sample was found simply through women with whom volunteer interviewers had a connection or through Irish organisations. Interviews were recorded and participants checked and approved the transcripts and recordings.
    See website https://unaganaguna.org/

    Data Objects

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    Metadata

    Dataset Title:

    Interview with Jane Williamson (formerly Tooher) in Crystal Palace, London, England 25.02.2019.

    Creators:

    Beecher, Ruth

    Dataset Contributors:

    ContributionNameEmailORCID
    NarratorWilliamson, JaneUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
    InterviewerBeecher, RuthUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED

    School/Department:

    Birkbeck Schools and Research Centres > School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy > History, Classics and Archaeology

    Keywords:

    Dun Laoighre, Dublin, Offaly, London, British Army, King’s Liverpool Regiment, Police Force, Streatham Police, Streatham, Anerley, Croydon, Coloma Convent Girls’ School, maternal death and bereavement, social work, Guy’s Hospital, summer holidays in Ireland, attitudes to sexuality and women, personal/romantic relationships, extended family, household responsibilities, attitudes to education and work, mixed marriage (religion)

    Data collection method:

    Úna Gan A Gúna Irish Women’s Digital History Project

    Interviews with a range of women born in Ireland during the twentieth century or those with Irish connections. The aim was to gather the stories, memories and opinions of Irish women born in each decade of the twentieth century, about their experiences between the approximate ages of 15 and 25. The sample was found simply through women with whom volunteer interviewers had a connection or through Irish organisations. Interviews were recorded and participants checked and approved the transcripts and recordings.
    See website https://unaganaguna.org/

    Collection period:

    FromTo
    25 February 201925 February 2019

    Temporal coverage:

    FromTo
    23 September 195925 February 2019

    Statement on legal, ethical, and access issues:

    The research proposal was ethically approved by the School of Social Science, History and Philosophy at Birkbeck, University of London.

    Export / Share Citation

    Cite as: Beecher, Ruth (2021): Interview with Jane Williamson (formerly Tooher) in Crystal Palace, London, England 25.02.2019. Birkbeck College, University of London. doi: https://doi.org/10.18743/DATA.00114

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