Bentley Grammar School c1965, Calne
Memories of Bentley Grammar School c1965, Calne
Calne & local memories
Read and share memories of Calne and Wiltshire inspired by Frith photos.
Lansdowne Arms Hotel
This, I believe, was originally a coach house situated on The Strand. My mother worked here and I wonder if anyone remembers her? I cannot remember the actual dates but I know that she was definitely there in 1962 since a young man who also worked there decorated my wedding cake for me. Mum's name was Winifred Cook (Win or Winnie).
Arrived after the August bank holiday in '62, I was 16. What a time, wine women & song - I'll never forget sleeping with WRAF in billet whilst the other 15 slept! Skiving morse class, nicking a motorbike to fetch bacon sarnies from Smokey Joe's. Of visitng Bonnie in the PBX for a warm-up, evading snoops to get in the WRAF block and passing out early to be posted to ElAdem! It really was one of the best times of my life.
Johnny And Tish
I worked here when I was about 14-15, with Shelley (who is now my sister in law), Chris (can't remember his surname) and Tish (Letitia Orlandi). This was when The White Hart was owned by Giovanni Brandani or 'Johnny', as he was known. It may have been my age, but it has to be said, I had the best time!
I walked across this bridge four times every day, on my way to and from school (I used to go home for lunch). Home was Abberd Way, and the school was on the Green. I used to stop there to watch trout, and I can still recall the smell of flour from the mill. The 'pond' was actually the millrace, and a second stream joined the river at this bridge, from where it flowed south towards the Harris factory and pass under the Strand, to emerge finally next to the Town Hall.
I was six when this photo was taken. We lived in a tiny flat in Curzon Street, basically one room, and I went to school at Fintragh, a tiny private school in two rooms part way down the high street, opposite the Post Office. This traffic island was very important. I had to cross that busy road in two trips, with the island being my haven and resting place between them. The zebra crossing came later: in 1950 it was every man for himself.
White Hart Hotel
George and Jo were my uncle and aunt and I spent days with them when I was young, I am 58 now but would love to get in touch with anyone who knew them. I remember the parrots well! I can be found on Facebook if anyone wants to get in touch. I would especially like to here from anyone who worked for them.
Dr Joseph Priestley
Having been a resident of Calne from 1944 to 1962, I often walked across this little bridge, mainly on the way to the recreation ground. There used to be (and possibly still is) a plaque commemorating Dr Priestley's discovery of Oxygen in this place. I believe the pond was situated just behind Harris' factory but when I last visited the town there was a supermarket there.
I have very fond memories of walking up this road in order to catch the old steam train to Chippenham, but alighting at Black Dog so that we could visit my grandparents who lived in Stanley. In younger days, I would paddle in the canal which partially ran alongside this road and catch tiddlers in a jam jar. Later I would visit my schoolfriend (also called Judy) who lived in a wooden bungalow on the left hand side of the road. She had a wonderful dressing up box and we would spend hours together "pretending". I then met my future husband who had been on a course at RAF Yatesbury - he and his mates would use the train to get into the "great metropolis of Chippenham". Much more exciting life there than in Calne in those days!! He now jokes that the only good thing to come out of Calne was the train and Beeching axed that. I, too, remember the gas... Read more
At the back of this photograph is Calne Free Church and just in front is "Wiltshires" the grocery shop. My father William John Cook worked there for many years. I can see him now neatly wrapping parcels in brown paper and tying them up with string. Amongst the many items sold here were large tins of broken biscuits and I have many happy memories of choosing my favourite types whenever he brought a tin home.
Come forward a little and the shop on the right was a stationers, whilst opposite that was Harris' shop. Bacon, hams, pies, if it contained pig it was sold here!
My Memories of Calne as A Small Boy
Please visit www.moonrakers.com/memories.pdf where you can download my humorous account of my rather mischievous childhood in Calne in the 50's and 60's, called MEMORIES OF CALNE.
A copy of this book is lodged with the town library.
The White Horse Pub
I was born in the White Horse pub in Calne in 1952, at No 1 Wood Street. My grandparents, Alec and Dorothy Poole, were landlords at the time. I loved to stay there as a very small child and my room was a cosy room in the attic with a window to the street. They had a budgie called Joey and a dog whose name escapes my memory. I also remember a birthday when I was given a doll nearly as big as me. There was a vegetable garden at the back of the pub. I used to pull up radishes and carrots and eat them before putting the tops back into the ground to hide the evidence ... which of course was pretty fruitless as the tops always wilted.
I believe this pub has now been demolished, which is a great shame because I think we shouldn't pull down old buildings to make way for new, often inferior ones.
I remember as a child being taken to see my uncle Ewart who was employed at Calne Railway Station for 55 years. My cousin Jean (his daughter) told me that he also used to use a long pole to put out the gas street lamps when on his way home. As a lad he had worked for Angells greengrocers but had always wanted to go the railways. Sadly the station has now been demolished, probably the demise of the Harris bacon factory played its part. The Harris factory had been a major employer in the town and had made good use of the railway to move its products.
I worked in Harris's factory in the early 70's, first in the sausage room then in the pre-pack bacon, then into the tinned ham room. Not the best job I have had but it kept the wolf from the door. My! how Calne has changed since then!
White Hart Hotel, London Road Calne
I worked for Jo & George Thomas (George & the Dragon) at the White Hart in Calne in the 70s. I often had to run up and down between 3 bars to work them all, and sometimes helped in the hotel by cleaning. Jo would say there's only 4 or 6 sheets today Sheila so not worth putting the washing machine on so wash them in the kitchen sink. This was a huge Belfast sink in the outhouses at the back. They had 3 parrots out the back that were quite scary and you daren't put your fingers near them. Although Jo was a bit of a dragon I had some fun there. Sometimes working until 2 or 3 in the morning when they had a lock-in. I made friends with many people including Doug Brittain, Heather & Tony Beamish, Barry Bryant, Bill Pellow and many more too numerous to mention. Oh! to be young again.
We went to a puppet show inside the Town Hall - organised by Sharpe's Toffees I think. It has to be around 1955 - 58. My father worked at RAF Yatesbury and we lived in Curzon Street. I can remember this view of the Town Hall quite clearly as I think the Calne Junior Infants went to school to the right of the building so we walked this way back from the church. We walked a lot on our own as well and I believe that the library was opposite this building, but that may be a false memory!
Greenacres School, Curzon Street
Does anyone remember the girls school which was called Greenacres on Curzon Street? It is now Springfields, I believe. It was a home office approved school in the 1950's and 1960's and girls from all over the country were sent there. Some of the staff were local people; is there anyone still around with memories of Greenacres?
Greenacres School, Curzon Street.
Does anyone still remember the Greenacres Approved School for girls which was on Curzon Street. I believe it is now called Springfields. I was there in the 1960s and loved Calne as it was then. Although not from the area, I have never forgotten the place.