Growing Up In Finchley - a Memory of Finchley.

I was brought up in Finchley from the time I was born in 1968 to when we left in 1984 and I have very many happy memories.  We lived at 5 North Crescent and I remember the parade of shops between the two entrances to the road - with Mrs King the chemist, Mrs Thomas who owned the sweetshop (she sold sweets in big glass jars!), Ben the grocer, Stan the butcher, T Lees TV (which used to repair TV's and have a very strange smell!) and Klage the Plumbers - we were on first name terms with all of them and my sister and I often used to go to the shops on errands for our mother.  There was an alley behind the shops (a kind of service road) where we used to explore.  Sometimes we would walk up to the shopping parade at the junction of Regents Park Road and East End Road to pay the paper bill at Farlanes the newsagent.  There was also a camera repair shop on that parade I recall.  In the summer we would go to Avenue House grounds (we had another name for it that related to an au pair we had at the time) and spend hours there - playing on the swings, hiding amongst the trees.  I remember the house had an eerie feel to it and there was a green wooden set of doors that led to the grounds.  I also remember Finchley open air pool which we would visit occasionally.  I remember visiting old Dr Newman who had a practice at the top end of Regents Park Road (only just remember this as I was pretty young) - I remember the old Victorian House he lived and worked in and that antiseptic smell!  It's a block of retirement flats now I think. I remember getting the no 13 bus home from school (in Swiss Cottage) and ringing the bell to get off just when the bus passed College Farm for the next stop.  There was also the 260 bus route and I think the number 2 and 2b? When Ben the grocer's shop closed, it was replaced by another grocers and general store and I'd always go in and buy something sweet for 2p or 5p or similar to eat on the short walk up the Crescent to home.  We knew a lot of people in Finchley and the surrounding areas and had many local friends.  It was a fun place to grow up.


A memory shared by Andrew Essex on Jan 26th, 2009.
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 Comments & Feedback

Sat Mar 3rd 2018, at 7:51 pm
emmabeckwith commented:
You mention Mrs Thomas was the sweet shop owner she was actually the Chemist. Mr and Mrs Thomas were my Grandparents , they owened the Chemist shop for about 28 years and they lived in the flat above the shop with their daughter my Mum for many of those years . The Chemist was there life. My grandfather Robert ( Bob ) was a qualified Pharmacist and used to make most medicines from scratch as as normal in those days. Ready made drugs where still in their infancy . My grandma Irene ( Rene ) was the drive behind the business, she worked incredibly hard and was a very proud women . My Granfather was happy when he retired but I know my Grandma missed the shop till the day she died . I was a little girl when they sold the shop but I still have memories of it .

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