Cleaning and Polishing the Home

Continuing my Mum’s remembrances about how life used to be, here are her thoughts on cleaning the home.

One thing which I remember clearly is the making of our own furniture and floor polish. The only polish we could buy was called MANSION polish. I believe it could be in short supply and so we were taught to make our own. We grated beeswax into the empty Mansion polish tin and covered it with turpentine leaving it overnight to soften. If we had any brown shoe polish to spare a little of it was added to this mixture when it had softened and all ingredients stirred in well. The beeswax had soaked up the turpentine and was easily mixed to look like bought polish. It was applied to either the furniture or the floor and even tiles, rubbed in well with a lot of elbow grease and then it all had to be buffed with much elbow grease, so that it all shone with no smear marks. It was a very good way of avoiding “batwings”. This expression was unheard of in those days.

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