Displaying the first of 114 old photos of Bromley. View all Bromley photos
Historic maps of Bromley and the local area, hand-drawn by Ordnance Survey and Samuel Lewis. View all Bromley maps
Bromley area books
Displaying 1 of 17 books about Bromley and the local area. View all books for this area
Memories of Bromley
Waylett''s Paper Shop Westmoreland Parade
I lived at 3 Barnfield Wood Close, Park Langley. Waylett's lived just round the corner at Barnfield Wood Road. They had three daughters who I was very interested in, I was between 9 and 18 at the time. The (photo) shows Waylett's papershop. My father had a Lambretta scooter and rode along Westmoreland Road everyday to get the Bromley South Train until he crashed going up Westmoreland Hill - he took the 47 bus after that. Great memory - I went to school with my brother Lawrence to Hawes Down School for Boys in Hawes Lane, West Wickham from 1955 to 1962.
Shops, Red Squirrels And Bad Men
I remember that first row of shops quite well. There was a greengrocer on the right which I was sent to sometimes to buy 3lbs of King Edward's (why did he have potatoes?) My brother and I argued about carrying the shopping bag - he was older and usually ended up dumping it in the road, so I had to take it home. Once I remember seeing a red squirrel in the fenced off woodland on the left of the picture, this was before it was opened as South Hill Park. There was more woodland; out of the right hand side of the picture. More shops were built there soon after this photo was taken. We used to play there, but there was one time when we were banned for a few weeks - a 'bad man' had been hanging out there. I'm not sure if the bad man was caught, we never saw him and we started playing there again. However, fairly soon after that the shops and bank... Read more
My Mother returned from a visit with her Mother to the Odeon Cinema in Petts Wood at 11 pm on Wednesday 16th April 1941, to find my father extinguishing, with sand from a bucket, an incendiary bomb behind our semi-bungalow at 154 Pickhurst Lane, Hayes. They heard more bombs falling and lay down with buckets over their heads. A 500-kg landmine came down though the head of my bed upstairs (decapitating me if I had been there) and into my parents' bedroom just six feet from where I was lying on a mattress at the foot of their bed. If the bomb had exploded, we would all have died - and if we had all been in our own beds, we would also have died. Suction, caused by the fall of the bomb, lifted the built-in fireplace in my parents' bedroom and slammed it onto their bed. It exploded at 1:30 pm on Friday 18th, leaving nothing of... Read more
Wolf And Hollander
There were a few sizeable department stores in Bromley, including Harrison Gibson and Wolf and Hollander (whose flag you can see waving on the left). I am pretty sure it was Wolf and Hollander that suffered an extraordinary fire in the early 1960's - the smoke was visible for miles around. I was in the crowd watching it from the street itself - a significant operation with many firemen struggling to control the blaze, which lasted for hours.
My First Job
If I remember correctly on the far left was the chemists, then the butchers, then Reekie's the grocery shop, then Wayletts the sweet shop and post office and then on the right a greengrocers. This could all be wrong of course. I had my first Saturday job in Reekie's stacking shelves, tidying the stock shed washing floors and even the pavement outside. I think I got twenty-five shillings for a days work which went up to 30 on my next birthday.
Westmoreland Road Shops
I remember the greengrocers, it was called Cunninghams I think. There was always a smell of cooking beetroot coming from the back of the shop. Then there was Wayletts who had a brilliant sweet counter and a very small supermarket called Reekies who later bought larger premises in the newer shops across the road possibly where the off licence is now. The chemist at the end of the parade was Hamer and Crumpler but I can't remember the shop next to it on the right.
I thought I had seen red squirrels as a child so perhaps it was in those woods nearby.
Does anyone remember Millets being in London Road originally on the right before you reached the Astor cinema? I have visions of a very amusing shop front with models in strange positions wearing very ill fitting wigs and clothes!
Head on Crash
I remember that market square very well indeed. At that time I was taking my girlfriend from Stockwell Teachers Training College to my house to meet my parents for Sunday dinner in my father's Hillman Minx. Feeling very grown up and pretending that it was my car, came round that corner you see there careful to look in the direction of the traffic coming from my left, when I was brought to a dead stop. The noise was deafening. I said something like "Oh dear me" jumped out and confronted two young French men who had just driven up from Dover and were lost and thought they were going the right way round that square trying to find Elmers End. So it was lots of hand waving speaking very load and slowly, thankfully both cars were driveable, round to the Police Station a few hundred yards behind us to get the only French speaking Policeman in Bromley to translate what they had done wrong,and to exchange addresses. Needless to say... Read more
Paul And The Playboys
I don't remember too much about Bromley as I lived in Harrow. But I travelled to that area a lot in the mid-sixties as I was the lead singer and co-founder of Paul and the Playboys. In fact I think I came up with the name. Unfortunately the distance was too much and I bowed out.