HERE former Saints player Peter Harvey concludes his reflections on local landmarks after chatting to his old friend Blanche Finney.

He writes: “Old maps of St Helens referred to Bromilow’s Delf as being on the other side of the railway where it appears the field or meadow stretched from Islands Brow all along the side of the railway to the Bridge by Laffak School.

“This made it a very extensive field and in the 1940s and 1950s I played football on it, at the Laffak Lane end. 

“The interesting thing about that delf at the turn of the century, was that it had a water-filled excavation or Sandstone Quarry or perhaps a mine of some kind, which was used by the locals as an outdoor swimming area.

“The word delf is not in common use, but an internet search led to a definition which includes mine working, quarry and a water hole ie. water-filled mine or quarry. 

“It is derived from the word delve or delving and sometimes spelt as Delph but not referring to Delphi a City in ancient Greece.

“At some time the Pilkingtons must have started piping their waste material on to the site of the Delf and gradually the water hole (quarry, mine) and surrounding fields were covered. 

“By the 1940s and 50s we played on the Burgies. Running along the top of the wooden chutes that carried the liquid waste. I am quite certain that all the activities, bike riding, sliding on the wet surface, were both dangerous and dirty and extremely foolish.

"However, we as children found it almost an ideal playing area. 

“It is fascinating to reflect that these self-same Burgy Banks are now considered a new eco environment and are subject to contemporary debate.” 

Coffey Time readers wanting to feed back on any stories or share pictures can email or call 01744 817130.