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4 April 2018 - UPDATED SITE NEWS

Dear Friends, Followers & occasional Visitors,

  Back once again and, again, I have to apologise for the sporadic updates to the site! I'm having a short break from my 24/7 occupation as grandad and "acting father", since my grandaugther is temporarily on holiday in Italy...

  I wish to point out two emails I received that may interest you: one from Neil Pearce [see in Current Postbag] concerning a Memorial for three Walthamstow Fireguards who died in WWII (19 April), and the other from Lindsay Collier [see in Current Postbag], regarding the Waltamstow Pumphouse Musem.
Both are alos posted on the "Highlights" just below.

  As always, any comments and suggestions from you are most welcome but don't forget to share your memories and pictures!

  Enjoy browsing your site & kindest regards

Welcome Logo

... to a website dedicated to recording the memories of those who were born, arrived, lived, worked or died in Walthamstow, formerly an Urban District, then a Municipal Borough in Essex, now part of the London Borough of Waltham Forest.

This site stores people's memories but also acts as a bulletin-board service listing the numerous emails we receive - seeking help with everything from family research to "Do your remember... ?"

We list received emails with an email link to the sender. We will try to answer any queries, if we can, but in most instances we simply do not know the answers to the questions we receive - but... you never know who might!

Scroll down for more info on how this website works and what it contains.

Yes, all human existence is here - provided its roots lie in Walthamstow - lost but not forgotten!

Send your emails to the editor, Daniel Quinn at daniel@walthamstowmemories.net. If anybody else would like to join us then please get in touch - there is always plenty to do!

Read the emails for the current year in Postbag 2018

Why are we doing this? Read our aims here ...


Dear Daniel,

My name is Neil Pearce, I am a retired London Fireman and an out of trades member of the FBU. I am also the Chairman of the East London Branch of the Western Front Association (WW1 interest group).
I am writing to invite you ALL to the unveiling of a Memorial to 3 FIREGUARDS who were tragically killed in Beacontree Avenue during World War 2. Here is a little bit of history on the tragic event.

During WW2 the Government passed an act stating that due to the "Blitz" all areas of London should form Fire protection parties. These were known as Fire Street parties, Fire Watches & Fire Guards.
On the 19th of April 1941 William Howard of 9 Carnanton Road E17, along with his colleagues, handed over their shift to Sidney John Lee age 50 of 31 Beacontree Avenue, Edward Manning age 57 of 32 Beacontree Avenue & William Arthur Shadbolt age 34 of 30 Beacontree Avenue.
At 10.45pm a German parachute mine exploded killing all three men and Injuring 22 others.

Two years ago I was approached by a neighbour, (Mr William Howard, junior, aged 93) to see if some sort of memorial could be placed to remember their sacrifice. His father was part of the team of "FireGuards" patrolling our area during the Second World War.
For the last 2 years I have been trying to make this wish possible and recently, with the kind assistance of Chris Robbins,leader of Waltham Forest council at the time, I have finally been granted permission to erect a memorial.
On the 19th of April 2018, 77 years to the day, we plan to unveil the memorial. William Shadbolt's Daughter, who was born 5 months after this terrible tragedy, has agreed to perform the unveiling of the memorial.
The ceremony will take place on the site where these 3 men lost their lives, which is at the junction of Beacontree Avenue and Belle Vue Road, Walthamstow London E17 4BT.
There will be a Living History display of WW2 civil defence along with a Fire Engine from the period and WW2 Bomb disposal vehicle, ambulance and display. Local schoolchildren will also be attending.
The event will commence on Thursday 19th April at 11:30am with the time of the unveiling of the Memorial at approximately 1pm.
I sincerely hope that you will be able to attend, as we would like to make this a memorable community event.

Yours Sincerely


From Daniel: I really hope that many of our visitors/followers shall attend!

Hi Daniel, how is sunny Spain?
You may not be aware that Waltham Forest won the London Borough of Culture Award 2019. This included loans of money to spend or waste as the case may be. We are currently at the museum working with the council yes? on plans to redevelop the museum in 2020. No announcement yet but watch this space.

We are however planning to celebrate 50 years of the Victoria Line at the museum in September. The date will be the 1st and 2nd of September 50 years to the day that it happened. You may recall that it opened from Walthamstow Central to Highbury and Islington without a celebration? The interesting thing that also happened then was the introduction of the one-man buses and the automatd ticket machines.on the line.

We now have at the E17 Walthamstow Pumphouse Museum three Victoria Line Underground cars. A completely refurbished car 3186 and two sections 3016 and 3049. The latter we are now currently working on to restore them to their 1967 original condition hanging straps and all. We could do with some help and funds to do this so if you can put the word out on your web pages it would be great.

Can you also request if any of your members can send me some pictures of the above, please. I look forward to your reply
Kind Regards


First Time Here?

For those visiting this site for the first time, we suggest starting from the FAQ Page, which contains useful guidance.

Then you might like browsing the personal recollections and stories sent in by our visitors, often past residents of this London suburb, that was once part of ssex: the "Memories" tag on the menu at the top of this page will guide you there.

If you are 'digging your roots', the "Family History" section contains emails we received, grouped by Surname.

(postcard image by curtesy of Rodney Silk)

Our "Postbags" contain all the emails we have received up to now, conveniently arranged by years

The "Personal Stories" section is an archive of stories and photographs about institutions, local traders, places and historic events that form the history of Walthamstow and the surrounding area.

For those interested in music groups, the section "Local Bands" will delight you!

Please feel free to email any material on Walthamstow - we will always try to feature it.

We are particularly interested in photographs and copies of documents that relate to the history of Walthamstow and the neighbouring London suburbs of Leyton, Chingford, Woodford, Highams Park and Loughton.

All material should be emailed to Daniel [daniel@walthamstowmemories.net]

Sit back and enjoy yourself!

Why are we doing this? Read our aims here ...

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NOTICE: Walthamstow Memories is not responsible for the content of the contributions it receives. Any queries concerning any aspect of the content of a published contribution should be addressed directly to the contributor. Walthamstow Memories will only remove a contribution if the contributor requests it or if the content is likely to create offence or contains racist or sexist sentiments or material that is likely to offend religious or faith groups.