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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!
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 (...Read full memory)
Memories are funny, they come and go and during this time of lockdown I've thought quite a lot about my childhood. We lived in Amberley Road, very close to the Raglan School entrance in Raglan Road. The school gates were never locked and the girls' toilets were at the end of the corridor and (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
I was 17 years old and lived at no 7 Tivoli Road, and when Father Christmas arrived at the front door with 4 cwt of coal my mum put newspaper down the hall and throughout the house so that the coal man could dump the coal in the shed. So Christmas Day we all sat around the fire to keep warm - and cold at our backs. We cooked (...Read full memory)
We moved in to our new house in Rosemary Avenue in 1938. We had a Triumph car and my father built a garage of timber and asbestos sheets and laid concrete runways for it (they're still there). I started school in 1939 at the infant school in Down Street. One of our neighbours had a daughter Shirley, the same (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
Hi all, I was there about 1961, I think it was late summer, I'd just got out of Myrtle Street Hospital in Liverpool, and instead of going home to terrible accommodation in Liverpool 8, they (whoever "they" were) sent me to Heswall to convalesce, from a gut operation which they recognized much later as Crohns. To convalesce (...Read full memory)
Well, I would like to bring a little history of our wonderful school in St Leonards back to life with the real colour and warmth of the time when I was there in the early sixties. First I would like to acknowledge the memory of Mr. and Mrs. Redfarn who (...Read full memory)
Towards the end of WW2, I was evacuated to Bodmin. On arrival, we were taken by coach to a large hall. I suppose there must have been more than a hundred of us. At first, we noisily filled the hall, each with a single suitcase. At the far end, a number of posh looking ladies sat at a long trestle table. Then the locals came in (...Read full memory)
When we all broke up for 6 weeks holidays it was all the kids jobs to go in 'the cut' and swim to fetch coal out. The boats used to carry the coal from Walsall Wood pit to Birmingham and the boater used to drop lumps of coal into the canal. Once we had been in the cut and got the coal out we had a bike frame and 2 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
Having moved to Stourton from Glasgow in March of 1961 at the age of 12, it was really exciting to find that, about a hundred yards from our new house, was a big pub with its own outdoor swimming pool. The Stewpony Pub meant little to me at the time, but the adjacent Lido was eye-opening for an adolescent youth in lots of (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
Born on the 4th January 1939 in 14 Council Cottages, son of Jack and Francis Cole and cared for by my Gran and Granddad who lived opposite, I had super baby years, although Dad was away fighting. I can vaguely remember sleeping in the Anderson shelter in a house in Bough Beech where Mum used to work. Better (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
Rediffusion: about 1958 and onwards. This bombshell hit us like nought else, it meant no interference on our wireless. No more tuning in every ten minutes or so. It was A. B. C. D. E. F. You knew Radio Luxembourg was the station for pop, but it was hell to get on a normal set, we would sit with our hand on the knob and ear (...Read full memory)
My wife was living in Northhumberland Avenue when a V1 doodlebug passed by very low, to land unexploded at the top end of the avenue. She lived at number 208. The house number it landed at was about 220 to 230. It was on a Sunday afternoon. The man living there was in the kitchen having his lunch, and walked along the V1 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
It was about 1953 when we discovered pluffers and ca caws. The pluffer was a device we used for a pea-shooter. This was a straight stem from a weed and it was about an inch or so in diameter, hollow through the centre and collected from Millfield tip where they grew in abundance. We would cut a length measuring about (...Read full memory)
It was 1958 and I had just left school at Walbottle Secondary. Me and my best pal Wes Coulthard (who I'm sad to say has since passed away) went on our first holiday together before starting down the Pit. We went with his parents Jimmy and Polly to Middleton Towers in Morecambe, it was just like a Butlins camp and bye, did we have (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
My father believes the man in the carpenter's apron in photographs 60995 and 60995x may be Francis New. The carpentry business he is standing in front of was eventually taken over my grandfather, John Bray, and his brother William. In the directories they were listed as wheelwrights but they (...Read full memory)
I grew up in Southall in the 1940s and 50s. We lived in Gordon Road in a terraced house that backed onto The Tube. We had an outside toilet, no bathroom and, until I was about 6, no electricity. At the age of 5 I could change a gas mantle. My mother continued to live there until she passed on in 1989. Two doors (...Read full memory)
I was born in 1951 in Lutterworth Road, Northampton just a 5 minutes' walk from one of the most beautiful parks in the country - Abington Park. Originally part of the Wantage family estate, it boasted a museum (formerly the Manor House), a church, three lakes, aviaries, and a bandstand. It was a (...Read full memory)
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.
My father was the caretaker for the Linquists` Club in Holland St from 1959 to the early 70`s, when the building (Niddry Lodge) was demolished to make way for the new Kensington town hall. We lived in The Cottage next to the lodge and the old stable was below my bedroom. The club was a school of English (...Read full memory)
I worked at Wannock Tea Gardens during the school holidays. I remember all the slices of Bread we had to butter and I still make sure that it reaches out to each corner. We really had to work hard carrying heavy crockery to the many out-building where the parties were fed. I remember that all the workers would sit down (...Read full memory)
The gas lamps in Station Road, Kilbirnie, were the responsibility of staff on duty at the High Station. This line went right through to Glasgow Central Station and of course it was the age of steam. Sanny Dillon was the lamp lighter and being small he carried with him a large pole with a hook on it. The (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)
I went to Gatley Primary these years. Happy memories, completely changed now. I am an aviation buff and saw the first BOAC b747 land at Manchester Airport from my classroom window. My teacher was a Mr Elliott, not sure of his whereabouts now but I shouted "IT'S A JUMBO" out loud - he replied "quiet, I dont care if its a pink elephant."!!!!!!!!
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 (...Read full memory)
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 (...Read full memory)