Early Life

Michelle Daly: Playing Out

Michelle was born in 1972 in Newham, London. She attended a local special school from age five until sixteen and then went on to a local mainstream college.

Here Michelle talks about playing out with her brothers and sisters


I was raised in the London borough of Newham. My parents had come from the Caribbean, Jamaica, so you could say I grew up in a kind of mixed culture background experience. But the area was a typical working class area.
I’ve come from a family of eight and I’m the second youngest. My brothers and sisters are quite a bit older than me but I’ve got a sister who’s am year younger than myself.
But I remember when I was much, much younger, playing out with my brothers and sisters. We used to live in a cul de sac area. We stayed there until I was about six, so they would have their friends and I’d be with them on their bicycles. And mum bought me a little tricycle bike, that I can remember.
It didn’t have any pedals but it had little wheels so I could use my feet to pedal it and that allowed me to play out. And that was really cool actually.
You’re the little young sister with your big brothers and sisters and you're out with them, it’s cool, at that time. So you'd be on their bicycles and stuff like that. As you got older, obviously they’re not going to be wanting to hand around with their little sister, so the relationship changed, but that’s a natural process. But my other sister who’s a similar age to me, who’s a year younger,
we went to different schools, so she had developed her own friendships,
I went to a different school, which was a special school, which was away from where I lived, so I didn’t have many friends. Actually I didn’t have any friends who lived local to me. So most of my friends would have been my sister’s friends, when it was outside of school. So my experience, you're saying 'What was it like?' Outside school, I didn’t have any friends but at home, it would have been just my brothers’ and sister’s friends I engaged with.

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