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Memories of Childhood

Our family moved out of Tottenham to the green fields of Waltham Cross in 1951. In those days that was where the trolley buses turned around to go back into London and where the countryside began. There was greenhouses everywhere and a large Italian immigrant population that worked in them. As it was so soon after the Second World War the living conditions were a great improvement to what we had seen in our lives thus far. A brand new three bedroom flat in Kenworth Close, inside toilet and a radiator in one bedroom. Just as important was what was outside, all we had to do was walk across the road, across the railway line and we were in Theobalds Park. Those lions and tiger in the glass cases were fearsome for us kids, and from there it was only a short hop across the Great Canbridge Road and into the woods. Each day was an adventure, walking up Tup'ney Tube across Oylers Farm and onto the New River. Many's the day we jumped in there to cool off in the summer. Many wonderful days were spent on the marshes by the River Lea.That was where we learned to swim, nearly drowning on one occasion and having to be pulled out by a guy fishing. From there it was only a short hop into the Powder Mills. Strickly forbidden at that time but it all added to the adventure. Wondering around Jones scrap yard, hoping the guard dogs were not about, got bitten a couple of times just in the hope of finding a bayonet or a German soldier's helmet. As we got older there was Cheshunt Boys Club and The Imperial Hall for the rock and roll nights. We would see people like Joe Brown, Shane Fenton and of course Screaming Lord Sutch. As kids we wondered was he a real Lord? There are some clever people who have written books like The Railway Children, Swallows and Amazons, Tom Sawer and Hucklebury Finn, we had all that. Waltham Cross gave us that and more. I want to say Thanks Waltham Cross for your part in making me in part what I am today

Written by Charles Youens. To send Charles Youens a private message, click here.

A memory of Waltham Cross in Hertfordshire shared on Sunday, 5th February 2012.

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