Ouseburn Valley is not only shaped by its architecture, street art,  and quirky corners. Its people, those who have lived, worked, and played here over the years, help shape our heritage and future. In this month's Ouseburn Heritage Blog, our Operations Officer Lesley Turner pays tribute to June Allen through Davey Pearson archive photos that depict her. 

November 2022

In our Davey Pearson collection of photographs we have 579 that include or mention June Allen, why are there so many? 

The main reason is that June and her husband Charlie were good friends of Davey, their home and family, friends and parties were a core part of Davey’s life from the late 1980s. They encouraged him in his photography and even hosted an exhibition in their home.

The second reason is that later June volunteered to help catalogue the vast collection of 60,000 photos that Charlie rescued after Davey’s early death and brought to the care of the Ouseburn Trust. They could contribute stories, background and other materials Davey had given them personally.

When June was busy in the archive there would be laughing and exclaiming from her corner (especially if Pauline Moriarty was in too) as she remembered this party at her house, that walk on the moors, another performance or something she knew Davey had loved. Her specialty was identifying the people in the photos – people she had known with Davey – and on the way identifying herself and finding her story in the photographs too.

A few years ago June, Charlie, Pauline and others contributed their memories to a short article on Davey Pearson.

When June died earlier this year we grieved to lose a lovely friend, full of kindness and with a ready laugh. Here are some of the photos Davey took of June that celebrate the life we miss.

There were numerous parties in the back yard of their house in Heaton, where friends and family mixed and Davey was welcome. Here, you can see a picture of June entertaining, alongside a photo of her at The Free Trade Inn, a regular haunt, with pint on table and cigarette in hand.

Davey himself was usually behind the camera but when we searched in the archive for June we found one with both of them in the frame.