When I was a young lad growing up in the tenement buildings just over the channel all the children used to play outside in the square. Two blocks of flats were arranged thus [ ] I think there were 8 sets a total of 64 flats each side.The two sides didn't interact much but each had our own little community.All my friends lived on the same side as me.
With no private cars around we had free range of a large area to play in complete safety. The boys would play footie in the winter and cricket in the summer with seasons for marbles and conkers.The girls would play skipping,hopscotch,two and three bally,and games with one girl in the centre of a circle and the rest dancing and singing around them,what they were called and their purpose is a mystery to me.They also had dolls and prams and little teas sets All of us boys and girls alike had battered rebuilt bikes.
It strikes me nowadays on my walkabouts that the boys are still playing footie and cricket and cycle around all be it on better bikes but I don't see any girls playing the games from that time,in fact they are rarely seen doing anything but wandering the streets in little groups all clutching some electronic communications device.It would seem things have changed little for the boys but a great deal for the girls.