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Reconnecting with our shared local history.

Enjoy these selected memories that have amused or fascinated our team - we think you will enjoy them!

Your Mam Margaret has been trying to find you for years and years and never has and never will stop thinking about and loving you. It was not your Mams wishes for you to be adopted you were taken away solely because she was unmarried. If any of the above information connects to you PLEASE contact me through here and I will pass on your details to Margaret as she would dearly love to hear from you.

Summer time, I had gone fishing on Royston Canal. The local fishing club had replenished the canal with fresh water trout for the anglers. These fish were so tame that all you need do was to hold out your hand with a few maggots and they'd come and feed from you; they were farmed trout. They knew nothing of predators and would calmly swim alongside Pike. Pike were soon to get so fat from feeding off the trout ...see more

'Cash on the Nail' the man said. . . and a century or so ago in Bristol he really meant it. For the deal would have been clinched on one of Bristol's four famous nails standing outside the Corn Exchange on Corn Street or, from the late 1550s to 1771, under a covered walk outside All Saints Church before they were moved to today's well-known site. The brass nails with their flat tops and raised edges to prevent ...see more

In the early 50's many streets in Uxbridge were still lit by gas. So "lighting up time" had a whole different meaning. The iron lampposts were much lower than the lighting masts of today and were more widely placed along the streets. Street lighting then had a different function because the lights were to illuminate the pavement, not so much the roadway. I lived in Frays Waye which was entirely lit by gas and there ...see more

When I lived in Wokingham in the 1950s, I remember a double fronted cycle shop on Denmark Street (next door to the entrance to some sort of meeting hall?) - you can just see part of the hanging sign for the shop in picture number W123016. To me then the shop seemed quite large and was certainly stuffed full of bikes and accessories that I coveted. I can still remember the wood flooring and smell of ...see more

The Broadway Wimbledon was brought to a near halt in December 1952 for four days. The Gaumont cinema in the back of this photo had to close on the third day because of the smog in the auditorium. I lived in Craven Gardens and the smog was down to less of a metre in front of your face and you could not see your feet.

The building in this view with the clock was, in the 1960's, a bank, I don't recall which one but maybe Barclays. I do recall on entering it, the main service counter ran parallel to the High Street and behind it under the windows facing the Whitgift alms houses on the opposite corner was another counter about 20ft [6m] long and 2ft 6" [0,75m] wide completely covered in bundles of notes. 5 Pound, 1 Pound and 10/- notes. ...see more

Added 16 September 2021
I lived at 14 The Homing, Meadowlands, Cambridge which was close to the airport. I was 8 years old in 1955. Often on sunny weekends, my Mum would takes us on a walk over to the airport. It was a quiet relaxed place in those days. There was no kind of airport security, and you could stroll through the gate and sit down on benches to watch the odd Tiger Moth taxi over to the runway and take off. The pilots would ...see more

As a child and adult, I remember the bridge and how long it was closed for boats coming up to the BOCM and Ranks flour mill. It had to opened in sync with the railway bridge and the trains. I remember the barges with big red sails towing more barges, and the year of a severe freeze when the river froze solid and looked like the Baltic with huge ice floes; people thought it might destroy the bridge ...see more

I am not sure which grandfather it was (how many greats do you want?) but the old part of my family, the Strevens, have lived in Broadstairs for the last five hundred years, and have the honour of having erected the post in the middle of the bay. This was one of five snubbing posts that allowed the barges to warp right up to the pier where they loaded tar and coke from the gas works at the top ...see more

The Transport Department at Southmead Hospital when I joined them consisted of an officer, foreman, and four porter drivers, with two buses, three vans, and two cars. We were responsible for supplying the group hospitals with staff, goods, and laundry. The group was comprised of nine hospitals, Southmead itself, Almondsbury, Thornbury, Berkeley, Ham Green, Clevedon, and the Clifton ...see more

The Fish Meadow is just North and East of the river bridge, and in my youth, (as now) was prone to flooding. I remember a year when the still water, stretching across the meadow (as opposed to the main river flow) froze over. Then, while the temperature remained below freezing, the water subsided, allowing the ice sheet to settle back on to the surface of the meadow and actually bend to the shape of the field ...see more

Added 29 December 2015
So! Back to 11 Woburn Place, back to school on Hope Chapel Hill back to Hotwells golden mile with its 15 pubs. The War was still going on but there was only limited bombing and some daylight raids, the city was in a dreadful state of ruined factories and bomb damaged houses and dockyards. While we had been away, our older brother John had joined the 92nd Sea Scout Troop, so I went along with him and joined up as ...see more

My name is Alan Moore and I was born at No.7 Church Street on the 18th December 1944. Apart from 12 years I spent down Bolton on Dearne, I have lived all my life in Thurnscoe, and that I am proud of. I was a Co-op milkman for twelve years in Thurnscoe and Goldthorpe, and then the Co-op Insurance Agent for Goldthorpe and " The bottom end" of Thurnscoe for the next 25 years. I dealt with some of the nicest ...see more

In 1961, I became an apprentice furrier to Brainin Bothers of New Bond Street. Brainin's owned a large store (I was told it was as big as Harrods) in Russia.They escaped the Communists and moved to Vienna, only to escape Hitler in 1938. Max and Leo were the brothers and Nat Saunders was the Master Furrier. Every monday we would fill a taxi with Squirrel, Ermine and Mink coats and stoles, and deliver them to Harrods ...see more

I and my family stayed at the Ferry House, next to the Boat House from 1965 to 1973. The house was then owned by the wife of my dad's boss and we used to be able to go for a fortnight each summer. We used to park our car, with permission, on the drive of a big house opposite Dylan Thomas's writing shed, and then everything - bedding, food and personal belongings - had to be carried along the cliff walk and ...see more

I n 1965 my parents retired to Saltash and my father built himself a small boat. As it was moored off the end of the garden. He looked around for a dingy to get to and fro and eventually found one in Gunnislake. Guess who got the task of rowing it down to Saltash. What a journey for a towney that had hardly been in a boat before. Fortunately the dingy was small and light [fibre glass] and the weather good also ...see more

I remember Mr. Beecham, a lovely teacher who took us for science - but look out if you misbehaved. I would watch fearfully as he dished out punishment. He would take you into a little side room he called his 'cupboard' and tan your behind with a big white plimsole. One day I was caught messing around and it was my turn for the big white plimsole, I was mortified. I was marched into the cupboard with the sound of the class ...see more

Added 24 January 2020
I hope you will indulge me a little as this memory is not mine but my late mother's. In 1953 my mum was 13 years old. Her name was Eleanor Williamson and she was admitted to Shotley Bridge Hospital into the care of Dr C E M Kellett. She was suffering with Septicemia and was barely clinging to life. This is not an exaggeration by any means. One of the nurses caring for Mum told my grandmother that ...see more

As you look at this picture, the hedgerow and trees on the right hid an old spring water bottling plant. It was all very basic. We discovered it one day on a trip to One Tree Hill. As a 'gang' of boys from Goldsmiths Avenue, we used to wander all over the place exploring and tree climbing. We had a tree along the Corringham Road, before The Manorway was built, that had the top cut off leaving a large flat area that ...see more

I loved to play on the swings, roundabouts and giant slide at Eastleigh recreation ground. The long polished brass slide was fun to try to walk up, slide down roll things down or pee down. I overheard a friend of mums who was expecting a baby – she said “It is wonderful now they can tell if you are pregnant by just peeing on a slide”. This amazed me that our humble recreation ground had such a magical slide! (This is a true tale!)

This 1904 photo shows both the main line through Box but also the entry to a huge underground military store and factory. When I worked at the MoD in the 1960's I recall that there were 2 lines at one end of the tunnel and 4 at the other. The plans of the extent of the underground works and stores were not fully shown on the plans held at the office; much of it was still classified as "secret" and ...see more

Added 11 September 2021
When I was around 11 years old in the early '60s we used to go to Chapel every year and stayed in Standish Bungalow. It was owned by my mother's employer who allowed us to go there as a reward for her devoted service. Lovely bungalow and so full of character and very secluded. I recall one year my father found a large box kite in the bungalow and suggested that we fly it on the beach, ...see more

I remember when The Beatles came to The Wood in 1963 to record the Morecambe & Wise show at the ATV Studios off Eldon Avenue. Me & a couple of mates from school (Holmshill) played truant to wait at the back of Studio Gates off Shenley Road to try and catch a glimpse. After waiting a few hours it got to lunch time so we wandered up to Shenley Road for a bite, and there was John & Paul just walking along by ...see more

I have the fondest memories of Caister on Sea. We used to have a week there every year and my sister and I were the only kids in our street that had a holiday every year. Like most people in the East End of London, we had very little money, but my dad worked on the railway and got travel concessions as part of his employment package. This enabled us to travel by train to Yarmouth Vauxhall and then ...see more

In 1932 my father Len James was moved to Brockenhurst as the 'village bobby'. I was born in 1931 and my brother in 1929. We lived in the Police house (now a renovated private home) and eventually both us boys went to the C of E Primary School. Dad had a standard issue police bicycle, on which he would ride to Lyndhurst and submit his report to the Station Sergeant there. In 1934 we bought a 1928 Morris Minor car ...see more

I first lived in a little cottage in Jolly Sailors Yard, around 1944. When I was about 3 years old my parents, Fred and Connie Smith, my brother Derek and me, Norman (Bim) Smith moved to Standard House. We had a great lIfe living there when we were older, just walking round the corner and diving off the quay wall when the tide was up. My grandfather Frank (Tender) Smith was Harbour Master and pilot ...see more

The St. John Ambulance Brigade of Grays Thurrock had three wooden first aid posts that they manned over bank holidays and summer weekends which were along what was the main road from East End of London running through to Southend-on-Sea. They were painted white and when manned and flew the brigade flag on a small mast attached to the huts. The windows were protected by wooden shutters which ...see more

I was born on the 24th of July 1929 above a shop next to a pub called the Rose of Denmark, in Hotwells, Bristol, very convenient for Father to wet his whistle and my head at the same time. Father was born in 1893, Mother in 1895. They were married on the 9th August 1924. My older brother John was born in 1927. Two months after I was born the New York stock market crashed, but I don’t think that was anything to do with ...see more

Tank tops and bell bottoms-memoirs of a Birkenhead lad I was born in Birkenhead in 1954 at the back of Central Station, opposite the Haymarket, and still remember being hungry all the time. We were poor, as was everyone we knew. A Catholic family, no birth control, the more kids you had the more Catholics there were, the more donations the church receives. Rather cynical I know. And I remember Father ...see more

We remember the excitement of seeing this postcard at Wallasey post office and realising that the black car was Dad's old Daimler. We could make out the number with a magnifying glass at the time. We recently returned from Scotland on a trip to revisit some old haunts and see how things had changed. Some were good and some were disappointing. These photos remind us of how things were when we grew up in Wallasey.

Our family moved to Friars Road in the summer of 66, from a damp house in Boothen Green, which looked over toward the Michelin Factory. I was 5 years old. My father Graham was a former art student at Burslem College of Art under the painter, poet and playwrite Arthur Berry, and by the 70’s became a tv engineer. Mother Kathleen was a Nurse. I remember the World Cup was on at the time of the move. Our back garden ...see more

This scene of Queens Road brings back many many memories for me. First of all, when very young and at the early months of WW2, probably in the late Autumn with falling light in the after school hours. Somehow I had come across or discovered the quite elegant shops there all on one side that one would frequent when being taken to the Odeon cinema seen further up, and if one lived in Oatlands Park by way of Oatlands ...see more

My grandfather, A J Hurd, was, for a time, Rudyard Kipling's head gardener at Batemans. He, my grandmother and my mother (now Joyce Richardson) and her sister (now Barbara Wainwright) lived in one of the cottages (which still exists) near the mill adjacent to Batemans. In addition to his responsibilities in the gardens, Grandpa also worked with the private hydro-electric turbine generator (which also still ...see more

Memories of getting the tube from Arnos Grove to Rayners Lane and then the long walk up Imperial Drive - until reaching the driving centre. The set up included traffic lights, zebra crossings, roundabouts, parking spaces, parked cars and a class room. Inside, a cut in half mini - showing you all the workings of the engine and steering - looks like someone had cut it open in length - ...see more

Rod Swift remarked (in a previous memory) about falling in the pond - well I was one of these. Rod must be my cousin's son, as my aunt and uncle lived in the house referred to. Around 1953 on an icy cold day in winter, a crowd of us were going home after school. On passing the pond we knew there was thick ice so decided to skate on the ice. We did not take into account that it was beginning to thaw and around ...see more

I was born in Moorland Crescent in the 1950’s. This council housing estate was built a few decades earlier and has a variety of different style good quality houses. Most people had nice gardens with flowers etc and we had vegetables and fruit bushes in the back garden. On summer nights it was not uncommon for the streets to be full of kids playing as most people had big families. Also there was not ...see more

I 'lived' in Clarence Park for years when I was a kid. It became my magic Kingdom! I knew every bush and tree and secret trail through the bushes. I would lurk in the bushes and spy on people walking past. I had a favourite tree - a huge beech next to the bowling green. I would climb high in it and sit quietly watching them bowl, hidden by dense leaves. I'd whistle and call to them and put them off bowling, ...see more

In a previous memory of mine I mentioned that the village of Upper Boddington was without mains water in the late 1940’s and early 1950’s . I lived in the School House with my parents, Pat and George Bishop. My mother became Headmistress in November 1949 and the lack of water on tap was just one of several problems that we had to adjust to. I was 14 years old at the time, fit and strong and the ...see more

I grew up in East Finchley and one of our family treats during the summer was trips to the 'outdoor pool' with my brother, sister, mother (Dad was usually at work), aunts and cousins from Hertfordshire and Northamptonshire. Usually as little ones we spent our time in the small pool at the bottom of the waterfall. Usually wearing our rubber rings we all learned to swim, and enjoyed our picnics on ...see more

Just thought many might remember waking up on Boxing Day 1963 and seeing snow on the ground which looked lovely. However, most of us will remember that said snow was around until about March 1964 and we had a live Christmas Tree in its tub in the dining room until April 1964 when it finally became warm enough for my mother to replant it in the garden where it probably still is today. Happy New Year -- Tony Joseph

Southend-on-Sea in the 50’s At the housing estate in Mitcham where we lived they had a tenants association. Every Friday night, two of the committee would go round to the Elm Court flats in Mitcham, where we lived, to collect one or two shillings. This money was for an outing that the committee organized, mainly in winter, so that people could have an evening out at least once a year. There were ...see more

The Seagoing Years. I must have left the Army sometime in August or September of 1949, and went back to C.J.King & son, tug owners, to carry on with my job as deck boy. This was not to my liking, as I was now twenty, and scrubbing floors for 3 quid a week all hours of the day and night was beneath my dignity, even though I was only getting 26 Shillings in the Army, but that was ...see more

I can remember waiting at Ashley Down Station for the steam train; towels,swim suits and picnic in big beach bags. The journey was an adventure every time, the smell of the smoke and the old carriages. Pushing your head out of the window with a a leather strap to keep it open. Feeling the wind in your hair, mum nagging about getting things in your eyes! The excitement as the train pulls into the station the ...see more

I Join the Railway In the summer of 1953, my Aunt and Uncle were staying with us for their holiday. It must have been my Uncle who first spotted the advertisement in the Dartmouth Chronicle for a Junior Booking Clerk at Kingswear Station. Everyone knew I was not fond of school, so it seemed natural that I should apply for the job. With some help from my Uncle, I sent off ...see more

Added 25 October 2016
We were raised in a pit house on Springfield (sometimes 'Avenue') near the far end of Ings Lane, in the fifties. It was a small street, only 6 houses. 2 or 3 keys would open both front and back doors (and the coal-house) of the whole street; but you hardly ever locked the door anyway. Often our small 'gang' walked over the lane towards Broomhill where there was a small wood. We would pinch a ...see more

I lived in Medway Road from 1934-1956. I also remember the doodle bugs (as did Gordon Savage, I remember him), the dockyard heavy guns, and school. I was due to start school on the day war started and finally went to Richmond Road Infants two years later. All the teachers were evacuated with the local area evacuees so there was no one to teach us. I went for 1 hour, then 2 hours, an afternoon, and ...see more

Added 24 September 2012
I was raised in Mountsorrel in the Soar valley near Leicester. It was a Norman village that lay alongside the river Soar under Castle Hill. The hill got its name from the mote and bailey type 12c castle built by the Beaumonts – Earls of Leicester who were given land by William the Conqueror. It is first mentioned in 1150 when its strategic position for a castle was first noticed. Some say the name of the village ...see more

I was born in 1938 and my maternal grandparents lived in a tiny shop on Havant Road, Cosham. I remember I used to write to them occasionally which is how I remember the address. I can't ,though, recall the number. Their name was Owen. I know that when my mother and I travelled on the No. 31 bus from Fishbourne to visit them my mother always gave the destination as "The Red Lion" and I do recall that the shop ...see more

I think it must have been 1952 or 3 when I went to live on Kingwood Common with my parents in the old nissen huts left by the German POWs, and afterwards by Polish refugees. We knew the place as Kingdom Camp, or just 'The Camp'. There were a good few families living there that I remember and they formed a friendly community of people that were waiting for council houses in some of the nearby villages. My ...see more