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Garden City - a Memory of Woodford Bridge.

I lived in Britannia House, Garden City from 1962/3-1970. This was one of the Dr Barnado homes inside the Garden City. I went to Roding Lane Infants then Junior school. I then went to St Barnabas Secondary School.
I still look back with great fondness on Woodford Bridge and when able to, I visit. I no longer know anyone in Woodford but do visit all the places I knew and liked. This includes visiting two school friends whom are buried in St Paul's church.


A memory shared by George Webber on Jul 29th, 2009.
Send George Webber a message.

 Comments & Feedback

Sun Aug 18th 2019, at 5:27 pm
Hi Teresa
You won't remember me but I remember you. I was also in union jack.
Wayne
Wed Jun 20th 2018, at 10:47 am
George Webber commented:
Hello David.
It should be easy to find out which house you were in. Get in touch with Barnardos. They are at Tanners lane Barkingside Ilford. If you know the years you were there and any other information that would help.
George
Wed Jun 20th 2018, at 10:01 am
I was at Woodford Barnado's as a baby, but have never found out which house I was in. Is it difficult to find out? Many thanks.
Wed Jun 22nd 2016, at 7:58 pm
George Webber commented:
Hello Teresa. Sorry I haven't been in touch, bit of a meltdown with my computer since our last contact. I'm having to use an iPad for now and have just managed to get on to this site again. I haven't forgotten about the photos and am hoping some sorted in the next few days.
I found the Joe Brown video on the net and watched that.
Regards George Webber
Sun Feb 14th 2016, at 4:46 pm
Hi again George
Thanks for replying . I went to Gwynne about ten years ago for a wedding not realising it was the area where I had lived. I cried when I saw the house and remember driving past Snakes lane.
After seeing your comment I did some more research and I found a video clip with Joe Brown in pathe news visiting us at Dr Barnados in his red e type jag ! It wasn't the time I saw him because I distinctly remember him coming on his own and singing to us standing in his car . Still great to see a clip anyway !
I live in Erith Kent and my email is teresa.mcfarlane1@ntlworld.com .
Kind regards
Teresa

Sun Feb 14th 2016, at 4:24 pm
George Webber commented:
Hello Teresa.
I have been back a few times but are only 2 buildings left from when we were at The Garden City. One of those is the church which as I mentioned is an indoor swimming pool for a health club. The other is Gwyne House. This now a hotel and entertainment venue.
I now live in Chelmsford, having finally come out of care when I was 18.
How has life been for you? When I came out of care, I didn't have any support and over the years have and continue to have a few nagging issues.
I too feel privileged to have been brought up in a setting such as we had.I still look back with a fondness and people say to me, how comes it doesn't bother you? I was about 2 years 6 months when I went to Barnados so I don't remember much of life before and I can't change anything so why worry.
I have some photos that I will sort out. Have you an email that I can send them to?
Best wishes George
Sun Feb 14th 2016, at 1:57 pm
Hi George , how lovely to hear from you . I don't remember anyone from Britannia house so it's remarkable that
you remember my brothers name . So many people don't want to look back but those memories have been a great source of stability and comfort because the setting was so wonderful . I feel privileged to have had that experience because it has made me who am today . I cried when I saw the first pictures of Dr Barnardo's homes and glimpses of the children walking down the path with their short trousers ! How I wish I could go back and find those houses still there and relive all those times . I did go back once after I left but it was too soon for me to feel nostalgic . Then a few years later when the house were still there but were empty. Have you found any good pictures of your house George ? I found it difficult and think one was called princess Margaret house but it looked liked Union Jack house .
This has made my day , thank you so much for making contact . I will tell my brother that you remember him . It's especially nice because he has just moved house to be nearer to me from Manchester . Any more stories from that time George ?

Teresa x
Sun Feb 7th 2016, at 8:38 pm
George Webber commented:
Hello Teresa. I remember your brother as you were next door to Brittania House. I remember him as Antonio Macfarlane.
I am so glad you mentioned Joe Brown if I remember right didn't he do his show at Canada Hall? I remember the swimming pool and the church (I was christened there). The church is still there as is now a indoor swimming pool for a health club.
It is so nice to hear from someone else whom lived in The Garden City. I still remember the lovely tree lined road, the playing fields and the massive bonfire on November 5th.
George Webber
Sun Feb 7th 2016, at 8:16 pm
I lived in Union Jack . There was a lovely orchard at the back of the house and I remember the girls and.boys dormitories . I was there with my younger brother Tony and joined later on by Paul who was in Guernay Shepherd the house next door .Because I was mixed race my hair was problematic so I used to have my hair cut by the barber that came to cut the boys hair . When it grew a bit longer comfort was used on my hair , yes comfort fabric conditioner ! But it did help softness my tangles ! There was a big dining room and a small tv room and a massive playroom where I used to look out of the window on Sunday's waiting for my mum and dad to visit . We had the most wonderful staff lead by Mr & Mrs Atkinson who had a son called Steven . We had great holidays and collected silver paper for the RSPCA on sat mornings .There was village hall where we watched films and always Remember the little rascals and laurel and hardy . There was a bakery , swimming pool and church all on site , playing fields and big bonfire nights and I felt part of a big family . I went to Roding lane school . If we had a tantrum or were naughty we had to go to Gwynne house where Commander Luxton and his wife lived I remember them being very nice . One day Joe Brown came one sat morning to sing to us and he turned up in a red sports car . For me very happy memories and glad I had the experience . Loads more to remember and will add when I do .Teresa Mcfarlane

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