Postbag 2004 Last updated: 31 Dec 2004


Hi
Found your site on the web concerning Walthamstow. Do you have any info or photos of the Crooked Billet Pub also any info on Billet road. My Mother lived there with Her Family from 1932-1938. As it is Her 80th birthday next month I was wondering if you have any history from that time as I am putting together a life history for her. She often talks about the area. She attended Roger Ascham School.
Look forward to hearing from you and many thanks.
Regards

Linda Simpson email


I have wonderful memories of growing up in Walthamstow. Period 1955 to 1962. We lived at 33 Selborne Road first of all. We had wonderful kids birthday parties. We used to play down the barras (barrows) once the market had cleared away on a Saturday. Saturday High street was always buzzing. We were fascinated by the little man who fixed glasses from his stall, watched those eels slide over massive blocks of ice till some lady picked the fattest one and we saw it chopped up yuk. Rossi's ice cream parlour delicious, the Dolls House shop. hemmings the bakers on the corner. Saturday morning pictures. We had no bath so once a week on a saturday we went to the swimming baths for our bath!.. I went to Mission Grove School and my favourite teacher was Mrs Witherwick and I remember the school play was The King and I and we sewed a hoola hoop on the bottom of the dress! Hoola Hoops were very in and I bought Cliff's Living Doll 45 at the one and only best record shop on the High Street. We then went to Averling Park Road and Winns Avenue School. We spent all our free time in Lloyds Park which was fantastic and safe! we also used to go the kids saturday afternoon show in the pavillion ...my sister won a prize for blowing a tune through a comb and paper. My mum work for Evans Fruiters in Chingford and my dad was a London Bus Driver attached to Clapton Buses. Thousand more memories take up too much time perhaps someone remembers me... we were good friends with the Solomons, Mrs Doris Marshall and sons next door Graham and Raymond was the first Teddy Boy I saw. My best friend was Janet Hacker when at Averling Park Road and I remember her brother Simon and the Milton boy twins.
Such happy times..

Barbara Hemmings email


Hallo,
just found your web site by accident. My name is Arthur Johnson,known as Josh At school & Rab in my old teddy boy days.

I was born in Billett Rd, in 1942 we got bombed out & lived for a time wiv me gran in Higham Hill & then Kingsley Rd. It's great to read about my old teenage haunts St. Marks & Leyton Baths & of course those great shows down the Granada, Little Richard, Gene Vincent etc. We used to hang out at Lambs cafe in the late 50's & knock about whipps x & the bakers, about 40 of us used to meet up on a Sunday for our weekly trip to the ritz cinema. I now live in Basildon, have been here since 1967 wiv Wife Doll (nee Stockwell). Still playing RnR on Basildon Hospital Radio. This site is brilliant, a great big hallo to all you who still love the "Stow". If anyone remembers me, be glad to hear from you,
(Always a w'stow lad Arfer) email


Hi John
I have read your comments regarding Walthamstow, Essex with great interest.
My great grandfather, Richard Cook and his family lived at 21 Chestnut Walk, Walthamstow, according to the 1881 Census. I would love to know more of the area.
I look forward to hearing from you and must congratulate you on your interesting website.
Maud Flink (née Cook) email


Hello there
I have looked at your site with interest because I was brought up in South Woodford and used to go boating on the lake near the rising sun on the High Road and swim at Whipps Cross Lido. I can find no reference to Whipps Cross Lido on the Web. I believe that it is no more. It was a maginificent pool. You had to walk through the forest to get to it. It was 100 yards long and 25 yards wide. It had a circular diving pool at one end that was 10ft deep. Along the sides wer concrete terraces for sun bathing. At the other end to the diving pool was a fountain and changing rooms. If you hae andy pictures I would be grateful to hear from you.
Regards
David Elliott email


Dear Sirs/Mesdames
Thanks to your superb website, I was finally contacted by a cousin of my own age, but one generation removed, from a family called PASOLA that moved from Tyneside to Walthamstow in the early 1900s. My cousin, Terry Pasola, now lives in Welwyn (his surname is derived from my Grandmother's first husband's Italian family surname).
After a long telephone conversation (Terry's call to me) we were able to establish, using common family first names, surnames and known family locations for comparison, that we are definitely related. His Grandfather was my Uncle Carlo Antonio PASOLA. My parents and I visited Terry's parents at Walthamstow in 1953, on our return from a 6-year stay in Spain via London; so that is how I knew that the Walthamstow Pasolas were members of our family. Your site has put us all back in touch. Many, many thanks; please keep up the excelent work, so that others may be put in touch too.
Yours sincerely
Joe A A Silmon-Monerri Manchester, UK email


Hello, I just came across your site and what a bunch of memories came flooding back. I was born in 1952 in Pretoria Avenue, where my parents had 'rooms' in the upstairs of a lady's house. At age 2, my grandmother died and my parents moved into her council house in Priors Croft off Higham Hill where my mother grew up. At age 5, I went to school at St Andrews Road, first the infants and then the adjacent junior school. In my class was a girl called Veronica Horst. Her father was Eric Horst, mentioned in other posts for his infamous carryings on. We had the 11-plus exam in those days and I somehow passed and went on to McEntee Technical School (as it was then) on Billet road.

Throughout my school days, I remember spending summer days exploring Folly Lane (where the gypsies had their caravans, horses, dogs and the constant smell of burning rubber). We also went down to the River Lea nearby and along the 'New River' which I think must have been an overflow canal. At the bottom of the High Street was Coppermill Lane which ran into Sandy Alley... a sort of bridlepath that led between the resevoirs across the marshes and down to the River Lea again at Springfield Park. Hollow Ponds was another favourite, as was our local Lloyds Park with its tennis courts and large playing fields.

My first real job on leaving school was at the old Bowater Scott paper mills on St Andrews Road. My local pubs were the Prince of Wales virtually next to the firm, the Higham Hill Tavern and the Woodman. There were some tough old characters around back then: there were the two local gypsy families, the Smiths and the Lights, who seemed to be at loggerheads on various occasions, hard men Billy Gudgeon and Ginger Mac, who could empty a pub in a minute flat when their tempers flared and the up and coming Southgate brothers. If we went to the Chequers on the High Street, we'd see people like the Murphys or Eric Horst. I remember one night when Eric had been released from a prison term and called in at a pub on Willow Walk. The landlord refused to serve him so he jumped over the bar and helped himself to a bottle of something strong, whacked the barman and made off. I believe the police had him back in custody the same night.

I had many regular watwering holes on those days. When I changed jobs and was working up Orford Road, I used to go in the Queens Arms, Nags Head, the Castle and Windmill. The Windmill became my regular and I made good friends in the landlord Wally and his son (little Wally). I lost touch with so many friends when at age 29 I moved north to live in Leeds. Since then I've worked in some 30 different countries in my role as an engineer, but I never forget my mis-spent youth and the old days in the Stow.
Dave Hagon email


Dear John,
I was born in Walthamstow in 1935 and lived there until I moved up to Suffolk in the mid sixties. What I remember most was the many happy evenings I spent at the social club of the Walthamstow Avenue Football Club.
I met many friends there and danced with some lovely young ladies to the music of Will Alan and his band. I met the first love of my life there, but we drifted apart while I was in the RAF.
I still have family friends there, but do not get down as much as I would like. Would it not be possible to have some sort of reunion meeting in Walthamstow sometime in the future for all us expats.
I shall always have a soft spot for Walthamstow and many, many happy memories.
Yours sincerely
Dennis Seager
Late of:
Daventry Avenue
Walthamstow email


Hello:
This site is astounding. I was sent a link to it after making an inquiry on the Essex Rootsweb list about Walthamstow interests. I have numerous connections to Walthamstow, and grew up in South Woodford. Both maternal grandparents died at Whipps X, and my sister was born there and went to school at South West Essex Technical College. My grandfather had a chemist shop at 795 Lea Bridge Road, and my father also had a chemist shop between 1912 and 1935 at least, at 140/142 High St. I'm interested in any information, photos, etc. of the area, and anyine who might have recollections of these places.
Regards
Martin Willcocks
Taylorsville, UT, USA. email


I stumbled across your brilliant website by accident. I lived in St Mary Road Walthamstow from 1956 to about 1963, and then in Bisterne Avenue near Epping Forest until about 1967. I attended St Mary’s Primary School and Maynard Road Boys School and for about a term went to Warwick Boys School in Barrett Road. In about 1967 my parents moved to Stevenage in Hertfordshire, where I have lived ever since. I have very happy memories of St Mary Road and the Walthamstow Museum, as well as St Mary’s primary school (I still have the King James Bible that we were given on leaving, the boys were given one in a blue binding, and the girls one bound in pink, I remember.) Fond memories also of Maynard Road school, with the head teacher Mr Leslie Birmingham, who so spoke so often and so warmly about Bunyan of the Pilgrim’s Progress. On my way to school I used to pass by the Connaught Hospital on the corner of Orford Road with the nursing home opposite, and I remember the nurses walking across the road wrapped in their blue gabardine cloaks.
My father (William Douglas Weeden) lived in Waverley Avenue and was one of 9 children of whom 6 lived to adulthood. Dad’s family was well known in Wood Street.
Colin Weeden email


This is amazing! I haven't set eyes on the school since I left on my last day from the Upper Sixth in July 1968. Someone wrote naming some teachers and it brought back so many memories - sitting at the back of classrooms on cold days hugging the radiators, crowding into the girls toilets with those incredible big, round handwashing (?) things, filing in for assembly with Mr Williamson, walking to the 'Annexe' for classes, being in the 'W' class, having the woodwork room for a home room. Loretta and Lynette were my 2 best friends, but there was also Norma and Daphne and Imogen Smith who was going to be an actress. Robin Smith played Romeo in the school production of Romeo & Juliet in our last year, I think.
I left the UK in 1972 having trained as an occupational therapist and married an Australian. I have lived since then in Melbourne, Australia. I've been back to the UK several times, but not to Walthamstow.
Susan Pritchard email


I found your website very interesting, what I am seeking is anyone that may have known me when I lived at 117 Winns Avenue Walthamstow from 1945 to approx 1955. My name was Brenda Birchall, I went to Winns Avenue School. I remember Miss Sarson the headmistress of the Infants School and Miss Hurry of the Junior School......I recall revolting school dinners, Tapioca Pudding with Jam......Miss Reynolds a teacher, also Mr J. Horner another teacher, although I think they were in the Junior School.......I remember the Saturday markets, the Library and the Saturday morning pictures. Packets of Acid drop Spangles and a frozen Jubbly......I lived next door to Freemans the Off License. I recall going to school wearing a smog mask and that the area in front of my house was always being flooded with the rain as were the cellers of Freemans....They had a Great Dane called Tessa penny Arrowroot biscuits that was were kept in a large jar on the counter. A shilling in the metre........My "Father'; worked for Hitchmans Dairies and often stopped off at the house to off load some free bottles of milk. I had a friend called Thelma who lived up the top of the next street along heading towards the Football Stadium.......Lloyds park and the park keepers.......the Pavillion........the goldfish pond and William Morris House..........my favourite place to hide...I remember the Cobblers, his name began with a V......not sure of the whole name though........There was a general store next to Lloyds park entrance from Winns Avenue...My 'Mother's Name was Margery, there were two brother called Michael and John Denton............half brothers...........so if anyone thinks they know me could they please contact me..........Thank you
Brenda Conway ( nee Birchall) email


Hi
I wonder whether anyone knows anything about the V1 Bomb which dropped on the Asea Works in June 1944? My grandfather was killed in this attack and i would like to know more about it.
Thanks
Paul Happs email


Hallo dear people in Walthamstow,
My English is not good anymore, because I learned it in the school forty jears ago! I had a verry nice pen pal in 1957 from Walthamstow London E.17. (the name of the street I have forgotten) ! Her name was Sally Green. Does anyone know of her, her age is perhaps 60 years? I would to be glad, if youcan help me to contact she .
Many regards to you from Munich
Peter Katzlinger email


I was born in Walthamstow in November 1936 and except for my National Service in Cyprus, lived there until 1962. I would love to meet up again with the "gang" from Elphinstone Road. Not in any special order, but as I recall their homes, there was :-
Peter Gedge, Michael Foster, Doody (Don) Mundy, Eddie Lloyd, Peter Dalton, Ronnie Smith and the girls, Pauline Cook + her sisters and Roberta Gregory. To name but a few. We all appeared to be about the same age, give or take a couple of years. I have great memories of the years at play and would love to hear from anyone that remembers me...
Brian Nightingale email


Greetings,
I lived in Walthamstow from 1959 - 1972 going to William Morris CTH School. I was in contact with several people via Friends Reunited but one, John Bailey has disappeared, and I had promised him a photograph. So also it would seem has http://www.william-morris-school.com/ any news on this front would also be appreciated.
Many thanks,
Graham email


Hi John
I have a relation who went to the school – probably 1901-1910. I have book given to her by the school as a prize. I would love to know more about the school – was it a general primary or did it specialize in the arts? Is it the one still existing in Folly Lane?
If you can direct me to someone who can answer these questions I would be very grateful.
Thank you so much.
Cheers
Heather email


I am trying to find out about the firm called W. Kitteridge & Sons est 1859. They made billiard tables. Any info would be appreciated
Thank you
BM Watts email


Hi there,
It is purely by chance that I found your site devoted to Walthamstow. It's brilliant! I've recommended it to friends who share the same opinion.
Cheers!
Bunny and Barb email


Hello there - have just come across your website which I found very interesting. That old photo of William Morris School made me shudder!! I don't have good memories of it at all!
I was originally looking for a picture of Hoe Street in the 60's/70's, in particular the Joe Lyon's Tea House that I was taken to every
Saturday by my father, with my two sisters, and where I would enjoy a bowl of tomato soup with buttered roll and a glass of hot ribena with a slice of lemon in it! EVERY WEEK!
It was next to what used to be The Tower Arms, on the corner of
Walthamstow Central, and is now a McDonalds.!
I am 43 now and born and bred in Walthamstow (and still here) I would love to be able to show my children how it used to be and will indeed be revisiting your website with them later.
I went to St Mary's Infants school and then on to Maynard School, William McGuffie (now demolished) and then William Morris. I went to Marsh Street Youth Centre in the High Street, had a Saturday job in the Seafarer Fish & Chip Shop at the top of the High Street. I remember the live eels, the sasparilla man, Rossi's and Percivals Toy Shop.
Anyway, would be grateful to hear from you.
Kindest regards
Eve Cherrington email


Having been in E17 since 1965, i have fond memories of the High Street before it was pedestrianised of of the sevral traders with character and trademarks. To mention a couple, there was 'Arnolds' stall, I think just outside the old Dexters newsagents - there was always a big crowd at that stall waiting to be 'sold' a 'bargain' by Arnold- he also had a shop in Hoe street. there was also the biscute seller who coined the term 'mum' for the ladies. And I can remember those poor drivers who mistakenly turned into the High Street on a Saturday and slowly crawled through the market and the crowds,
Those were the good old days
Eb email


Hi My name is Helen and my grandad sadly died 4 years ago, James Thomas John Groves, know as Bunny Groves he played centre forward for Walthamstowe Avenue I wondered if you know if I could get the old paper clippings, pictures ect of him I have one scrabook that my nan passed down to me, which are rather tatty, but I would like to get the whole story of my grandads football path, plus if possible information on Vic and Reggie Groves his brothers Kind regards
Helen email


Does anyone know who Lord Roberts of Macdonald was. There is a plaque on a house in Macdonald Road, which is off Fulbourne Road obviously the road is named after him, but who was he, what did he do
Renee Buckley email


Hi read your website re Walthamstow. Remember most of the places mentioned. I was born in Mersey Road. Grew up during the war, there was great camaraderie. I remember a flying bomb or rocket dropping on the corner of Hoe Street/High Street whilst lots of people were lining up at a fish stall. Happier memories The Bell Cinema (flea pit) the Carlton, going to the Granada Saturday mornings, the Dominion, the Palace, the pie and eel shop etc. Winns Avenue Junior School headmistress Miss Sarson. William Morris School - have met up recently with about 8 friends through Friends Reunited. Lloyds Park where we used to take jam sandwiches and bottles of water coloured with lemonade powder.
Walthamstow Avenue Football club that is now sadly blocks of flats. Jimmy Lewis Snr former Stows player who had a sports shop at the Palmerston. Arthur Sedwick's sports shop nearly opposite the Park. Could go on forever.
Played hopscotch in the street with bits of slate that came off roofs during the war and collected shrapnel that we handed into the Police Station at the top of the road. Great days, great people and materialistic was a word no one ever heard of!
Best Wishes
Norma email


Hi There,
Lovely web site. I lived on Walthamstow High Street in 1971/72. I was sharing a flat with a gentleman called Jonny or Johnny Mohan. I vaguely recall that his brother had a shop a few doors down from the flat which imported Indian clothing and was also possibly called Mohans on the High St. It was 3 or 4 blocks down on the right after turning onto the High St. from the Tube station. I went there recently hoping to recognise it but it has changed so much since that I had no idea which it might have been. The flat was around the corner off the High St. and entered form the side after going up some steps. What I am after is to try and make contact again after so many years and I wonder if you could be of any help.
Yours sincerely
Daniel (Don) Newman email


Dear John,
I am searching for my ex lady friend Maureen Price, of Queens Road, Walthamstow, E17, 1947/53 we were neighbours in this road, during these years, my name is Alan Smith. Would also like to contact any of the Spinks family last known to be living in Farnham avenue, near Bell pub, Forest Rd.(my cousins) in the years 1950/60's.
And lastly anyone who lived in Sturge Avenue, E17. August 1940 and went to Chapel End school, this is when the land mine dropped in Sturge Ave. and thankfully did not explode, all the people from this road were taken to Chapel End school, while the mine was defused, any help with the above please email me, many thanks.
Alan SMITH email


Hi,
Like many others, I came across this website by accident !
I notice that Paul Gandolfi contributed a photo to the site. I wonder if you could pass on my address to him as I used to be a friend of his brother Peter, and I also knew another brother Andy. I never met Paul, because I think he lived in Switzerland or the U.S.Peter and I went to Cardinal Wiseman School in Shernhall St in the 70's. I was at his wedding, but we lost contact some time after that.I left London in '91 and spend some years in Germany and now I am living in Ireland. I would like to get back in touch, just to say "hello".
Thanks
Eamonn Rogers email


Hello there. My name is JOHN STILES. I used to live in walthamstow and went to William Morris school from 1945 to 1949. I now live in Australia.
John Stiles email


What an interesting web site!
On the Historic Walthamstow page, I have seen the photograph of the coronation street party held in Howard Road in 1953. However, I unable to find myself nor do I recognize anyone in the photo. I was less than six at the time. Are you sure this is Howard Road or 1953? I won the fancy dress competition (maximum cost 5 shillings) dressed as a television set with an H aerial on my head. As I was the winner, my name appeared in the newspaper.
My family lived at number 29 at the time and, as I recall, the street party was held further up the road towards the higher numbers. Is anyone able to verify the photograph and put names to the children?
Regards,
Stephen Moore email


Lovely website. took me back 50plus yrs to my boyhood in W-stow. I used to box at the gym there and have the broken nose to prove it. One of my adversaries now lives in Sarfend and is quite posh. What price nostalgia. People ask me if I miss London/UK and it's difficult to tell them I miss a City/country that hasnt existed since the late 50s but I'm mindful it was sort of grey and dull just post-war but the people ah, the people!! Most of mine are dead and buried. Anyway, it's really great to have a trip down memory lane and thanks for being there.
Do you know, one yr I bought 6 bottles of sasparilla and brought them back to NZ. I've tried all over the world, you just CANNOT get sasparilla like that these days. Tepid in the summer and hot in the winter.......luvverly!!!
A.R. Freshwater email


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