DECEMBER MAILS - [Top]
Hello Daniel, and a Happy New Year.
Having written recently about dear old Rodi's cafe, I thought the attached photo's might also be of interest. These were discovered by a friend at an antique fair held near Hatfield. They were sent to me because of my interest in American cars, but I soon noticed something else, of even more interest to a Walthamstow 'old boy ' - the location. The pictures of the pair of cars were clearly taken at the front of St. Mary's Church, (just out of shot) in the heart of Old Walthamstow. The proof is the fact that the buildings in the background are the Monoux Almshouses. I believe the tumble-down state of the end of the buildings is in fact, bomb damage. This gives some guidance to the date the pictures were taken. It is recorded that this damage occurred in October 1940, and they were rebuilt in 1955.
The back of the photo's are stamped with the photographer's details which are - Richard B. Beckwith 4 & 6 Church Lane, Walthamstow. This address, I believe, would have been at what is now known as the Ancient House, right opposite St. Mary's, so he didn't have to walk far to take them!
For those interested, the cars are a 1938 Packard 8 'Seven Passenger Touring Limousine' and the other, registered DYE I, is a 1937 Nash Ambassador 6.
I would be most interested if anyone remembers these cars, or to whom they belonged. It seems likely that they were from a local car hire company, and someone may even recognise their drivers (Chauffeurs?).
The other picture, which is sadly of poor quality, is a little outside of our area but I am hoping again for some help, this time in identifying the location of the 'Lambs' car showroom outside which is parked this very rare 1937 Cord Model 812 'Westchester' Supercharged Sedan. Lambs are listed in a period ( 1937 ) motor magazine as having a showroom in Hoe Street opposite the station and also one down past Charlie Brown's Roundabout on the 'arterial' at Woodford. Close study of this photograph reveals the telephone number - WAN O123 in a window, so my question is: could a premises on this site, where now stands 'Bourne Court' industrial estate, have had a Wanstead phone number, or does anyone remember Lambs having a showroom that would definitely have had the Wanstead exchange code?
Hope this may be of some interest, Best Wishes,
I just viewed your superb photo slideshow, and really enjoyed it! It is a wonderful collection of old photos, with delightful musical background. Thank you! My father's brother, William Felix Mist was born in Walthamstow 26 November 1902. The family then moved to Yorkshire for work, and returned to the Hornsey area, before emigrating to Canada. It was lovely to "visit" the area where my Uncle Bill was born. Thank you!
I have spoken to my 95 year old uncle about the Italian POWs he took to the L. Rodi cafe in Blackhorse Lane. He told me that he had collected them from a prisoner of war camp in Leyton and that they were doing demolition work in the area when he took them to Rodi's cafe for a lunch time break. I suspect that the camp could have been the one in Carpenter's Lane, Stratford. Carpenter's Lane has been engulfed by the Olympics project and the approximate site of the camp is where the Aquatics centre has been built. My uncle tells me that Mr Rodi senior refused any payment for the meals served to the Italian POWs and from then on, when going there by himself, he always had a free meal. During war time, under the Geneva Convention, prisoners were not allowed to be used as labour to help in the war effort of their enemies. This may not have observed by the Nazi regime as both military and political prisoners were used in munitions factories and, most notoriously, for the building of V2 rockets. There was some controversy of using prisoners as slave labour but once the war was over it was no longer considered to be work for the war effort. My uncle told me he does not think there was a POW camp near Folly Lane as Dave Hughes had been told. There was Billy Trigg's car breakers yard, Pettit's selling earthenware and terracotta pots and a Gypsy camp. I remember Folly Lane being like a quiet and remote country lane on the edge of Walthamstow far removed from the rest of the borough. The POW camp nearest the borough, apart from Carpenter's Lane, was on Chingford plain near to Sewardstone. A happy New Year to all on WM.
25 Dec 2011 - WWII Evacuees:
Daniel, May I first wish you seasons greeting, and the hope for a healthy new year.
I was a evacuee in 1939 from 4 Ickworth Pk Rd and recently acquired the enclosed picture, which I believe came from a published book. The wall sign in background is of Ickworth Pk Rd
Can any of your members recognize themselves or relatives and throw any light on it.
I went to St JUST near Lands End with elder brother Robert.
24 Dec 2011 - Lost & Found:
G'day from Melbourne, Australia. I thank Bill for helping me find Valerie Marshall (Mowett), after putting a message on here. I am looking for another Walthastow Lady, Ms Irene (Rene) Wesley, who lived in Swansland gardens, E.17. If anyone has any info/links to Irene it would be much appreciated. Thank you
23 Dec 2011 - Google Maps Historical Views:
It is possible to see a historical aerial image of that location as it was in 1945.
If you have added Google Earth to you computer, focus in on the Folly Lane location.
Select the historical imagery icon, it looks like a small clock.
In the slider bar that appears, move the setting to 1945.
What you will see is like a grey 1945 overlay that appears on the map. The image shows there are either a large number of buildings or some form of storage, where Folly Lane abuts the North Circular Road. These are also buildings on what now is Sainsbury's and the adjoining sports field. The resolution is great as it is 1945 vintage, but it might be enough to jog someone's memory.
If you do not have Google Earth, I would always recommend it. It is free and only takes a few minutes to install. After that, the world is literally your ouster.
23 Dec 2011 - Family History:
Dear Daniel, I was in touch with you some weeks ago about Charles Lestor and his burial. I thought you might like an update: via the hospital records, I now know that he was buried in Brompton Cemetery on 27th November 1952, four days after his death. I think it must be fairly close to the hospital.
No luck in tracking the Canadian lady.
Many thanks for your help and have a good Christmas.
19 Dec 2011 - Merry Xmas:
I sincerely hope this works, have sound on:
[From Daniel: It works, Len, and thank you very much!]
19 Dec 2011 - Filming Project:
Hi Daniel, Thank you so much for your helpful reply and contact ideas.
And also for posting it on your site. Bill Baylis has already replied with some other great suggestions.
I'll keep you posted with how the project unfolds, Thank you again. Kind Regards,
19 Dec 2011 - L. Rodi Café:
Hello Daniel, Many thanks to Jim Paling and Bill Bayliss for their interesting follow-ups on my post about the L. Rodi cafe in Blackhorse Lane. Certainly if this cafe still has its original decor then it must remain so as a fine example of dining in earlier times. As long as the health and safety brigade don't find some stupid excuse for modernising the place. I have forwarded Bill's links to my cousin who, when her father next comes to visit her, will show him the photos on the websites. Her father is of course my uncle and it was he who took the Italian prisoners of war to Rodi's cafe. He will be 95 years of age on the 29th. of this month. His mobility is not good, but he is very bright and has a mountain of knowledge of the Blackhorse Road area. He was born there, went to school there (Blackhorse Road) and lived there until the family home in Essex Grove was compulsory purchased for building flats in 1965. Whilst on the subject of Italian immigrants another who made his mark in Walthamstow was Emilio Matioli, a photographer, who had his studio in the High Street. He took many photographs of places in the area and of the people who resided there. Some of my family photographs were taken by him. He was born in Milan in 1864 and his wife Marie was French. Emile Matioli died in 1925. Kind regards,
17 Dec 2011 - Polish POWs:
After reading the piece by Rodney Silk about Polish pow's, I remembered as a young lad playing in the fields at the top of Folly Lane. We were told that there was a prison camp on the site by no one knew anything about it, did it exist? I did look through A MOD website a couple of years ago for information, but it wasn't listed. We found holes in the ground and wondered if there had ever been any underground tunnels. Does anyone know? Regards,
17 Dec 2011 - L. Rodi Café:
We are indebted to Rodney Silk and Jim Paling for their splendid accounts and history of a Cafe that is one of Walthamstow's best kept secrets and which inspired a song and an album (Table For One - Darren Hayman)
For those of you who wish to see further pictures of the interior and exterior, I recommend the following websites:
16 Dec 2011 - Filming Project:
Hello Daniel and John. What a great site. I have just come across your memories site whilst searching the internet for stories and history of the Blackhorse rd area, and I must say its a brilliant find. I am currently working on a short film "our story' which is a compilation of stories, songs, and poetry from people who live in the blackhorse rd area. And I was wondering if you might have some interested writers, that might be keen to pass on some of there stories on film. Or if you might have any information, footage, photographs you might like to share with us about the lower part of Waltham Forest, around the resevoirs. We are planing on filming the majority of stories through this coming January, and so would love to hear anything you can share with us before then. Hope to hear from you soon, should you like to know more please visit www.groundswellarts.com Kind Regards,
16 Dec 2011 - Local Bands:
You mention Ian Thunderfoot Purdy, the drummer, who later moved to Germany. It was my band he went to Germany with. I would very much like to get in touch with him. Do you have any information?
15 Dec 2011 - L. Rodi Café:
I too remember Rodi's Cafe very well. My first job on leaving school was as a labourer in the same railway yard at Blackhorse Lane as Silk's, in my case for A.H. Herbert and Co., builders merchants. This would have been in about 1962. As the youngest there, it was my job to go over the road to Rodi's twice a day in order to get the tea for all the other workers. This was often a welcome break from the hard work of unloading the lorries and railway wagons that turned up every day full of bricks, slates, and cement, etc. I would take a large enamel can to be filled with tea, and a list of wants, like sausage rolls, bacon sandwiches, chocolate bars, and various other items for the blokes I worked with. Rodi's was generally busy as there were many firms in the immediate area who used the place, such as Notons, and Hammond and Champness. Cyril was always behind the counter fending off the good-natured 'ribbing' he would have to put up with, and bustling about preparing the orders. Also there were his wife and daughter, who were, I believe, Maria and Louisa (I may well have that the wrong way round). I didn't mind if it took a while to fill my order, as I would always be moaned at when I got back for being so long anyway! The interior of the Cafe had it's walls and ceiling covered in green and white glass panels (Vitrolite?) which I think dated from well before the war. The food was always excellent, and I particularly remember the home-made sausage rolls filled with savoury minced meat and onions, and in the summer time Cyril used to offer pint glasses of a mix of cream soda and milk, straight out of the fridge. If I had been unloading something like 5 or 6 tons of bagged Hydrated Lime, bought in by the Tottenhoe Lime Co. I would be covered from head to toe in the white dust, and parched. This concoction of Rodi's seemed like something from Heaven!
This went on for about a year, until I got my driving license and started doing deliveries and collections for Herberts using their old 5-ton 'A' type Bedford, which, like all their other lorries, was petrol engined. (there were so many lorry firms around where I lived, just off Higham Hill, in those days, does anyone remember Attwoods little tippers, Geo. Whitehouse's fruit and veg. lorries, or the wonderful Bowaters A.E.C. Mammoth Major 8 wheelers loaded with great rolls of newsprint parked in St.Andrews road outside the mill of that name? ). I never got to go back to Rodi's until about 2 years ago. I heard a book being discussed on the radio which mentioned Rodi's as being one of a number of classic London cafes which still survived virtually unchanged. When I entered, it looked just as I remembered it, sadly, without Cyril, who has passed away now. It was still owned by his family, though, and I was able to talk to a couple of them about times past. I said that the only thing that was different was that the impressive stainless steel panels from the front of the place had gone, these had been embossed with various fare to be found inside--- Tea, Coffee, Lunches, etc. and had formed the front window sills. I was delighted to be told that, far from having been discarded, they were in fact, hanging on the walls in the back room, where I was glad to see them!
I am sorry to hear that the old cafe may now have changed hands, if this is so, I sincerely hope it will not be 'modernised' and thus lose it's character.
15 Dec 2011 - Your Donation to Vestry House Museum:
Dear Daniel, I just wanted to let you know that we are using the generous donation from Walthamstow Memories to purchase conservation materials for the Museum. This will allow us to continue with our volunteer project to repack the stores and ensure that the objects are all stored in the best possible conditions for the future.
Thank you once again for all your support of the Museum.
Museum, Gallery & Archives Manager
William Morris Gallery
London E17 4PP
From Daniel: May I remind you all that the VHM Appeal is still open and donations, however small, will be gretefully received.
Hello Daniel, I have just watched the BBC T/V London News and on a report about youth unemployment a cafe in Blackhorse Lane, near the Royal Standard junction with Forest Road was used to illustrate this issue. An old photo of the cafe was shown as an introduction and I recognized it immediately as I was taken there a few times just after the second world war by my father. Along with three brothers my father ran a coal business, J. Silk & Sons, from the Blackhorse Road railway depot. They used the cafe, L. Rodi & Son, for their lunches and snacks and, during the school holidays, I would go there with my father. This was just after the war and I remember meeting the proprietors, Mr. Rodi senior and his son Cyril. I went passed it not that long ago and was surprised to see it was still a there with the Rodi name. The present owner, who was interviewed by the news programme, was not a member of the Rodi family and had taken over the cafe just a week ago. Do any of the WM readers remember the cafe and the Rodi family and when they eventually left? One story told by one of my uncles was that after the war he was in charge of taking some Italian prisoners of war doing certain jobs until they were repatriated. He decided to take them to Rodi's cafe and they were surprised and delighted to be able to speak their native tongue to fellow Italians living in a suburb of London. When asked what they thought of the experience they indicated that the UK must be a good place to live. Whether they were true to their word I do not know.
14 Dec 2011 - Festive Greetings to Fellow WMs Webbies:
Hi Folks, first to convey my warmest greetings to you & yours for the Festive Season & to wish you a healthy, peaceful & contented New Year - despite all the doom and gloom, brought about by some very greedy people.
By way of a wonderful change - as I don't think anyone has actually DISCOVERED me as part of their ancestral lineage before! - I've recently received a 'blast from the past' letter from Vancouver, Canada. Wow! It was from an 'unknown' first cousin - the daughter of one of my Dad's sisters, Auntie Beatrice [aka Pop, but nobody knows why!] MILLER. As yet, I'm not aware of when my cousin Betty MAYER [nee MILLER] married and went to Canada but, seems she married a German guy - yet to know where his father hails from. Betty was surprised to learn of our Gt.Grandpa Heinrich Christoph MULLER [aka Henry Christopher MILLER] born in Germany. Thus, she, too, is the Gt.Granddaughter of our Gt. Grandparents James STEWART, born in Belfast, Co. Antrim and Harriet [nee KIRBY], born in York who lived in Walthamstow for many years. [Please refer to my Family History entries under 'S' & 'M' for further info.]
If there's any WMs Webbies who can relate to any of the above, too, do please let me know.
That's it for now, Folks, I'm off to rejoin the madness & mayhem preparing to greet the Festive Season.
13 Dec 2011 - Public reply to John FORD:
Hello John, I have done a run-out of Rodham Chamberlain and his family that I have sent to you by private email. His family comes from a small Norfolk village called Great Dunham and I think that their history is well documented in the parish records.
13 Dec 2011 - Public reply to John FORD:
Hello John, I have done a run-out of Rodham Chamberlain and his family that I have sent to you by private email. His family comes from a small Norfolk village called Great Dunham and I think that their history is well documented in the parish records.
13 Dec 2011 - Maps:
Hi Daniel, Mick Gilbey has posted a map of 1933 and on it are some proposed road development in our area. I am now wondering whether your map shows the proposed N.Circular and that our mystery road was never built, because it encroached on the forest, at least when they built the N.Circular they had the decency to skirt the forest and not like the next generation plough their way through it, they could quite easily tunnelled as they did at Bell Common, Epping. There was a particularly nice glade of silver birch trees, which many local artists used to paint, sadly all gone....
What a coincidence you had an aunt in Beacontree Ave: I only lived 4 roads away. I think our road will remain a mystery and its time to move on. kindest regards
12 Dec 2011 - Public reply to Deborah Lea WELLS:
Hello Deborah, I have sent you a private reply concerning your search for records about your grandma. The gist of this is that I believe that I have found her in 1901 living at the St Mary Roman Catholic Orphanage & Poor Law School. (See my article in Walthamstow Memories about the place) I also believe that she also had an older sister living there named Rose.
Good luck with your search and please do not hesitate to come back to me if you think that I can be of further help.
11 Dec 2011 - Mistery Map - Public Reply to Rodney Silk:
I think the solution to the mystery road alongside Beacontree Avenue can be found on the 1908 map of London, at this address: [http://mapco.net/bart1908/bart11b.htm].
It appears to be a wide trackway large enough for a vehicle. I cannot tell from the map whether it was tarmaced or not but I would not think so. The map then shows the wide track petering out to a footpath which doubles back to Bellvue Road. In 1908 it appears that Pentire Road including the intersecting roads to Bellvue Ave had not been built. Becontree Avenue also terminated at Bellvue Ave at that time.
On another 1933 map, contained in an article I wrote [read it here], Pentire Road had still not been built. This same wide track (mystery road) appears on the 1933 map as well. Clearly when the North Circular Road was built alongside Beacontree Avenue, all traces of this track would have disappeared.
Daniel's mystery map does show the outline of Pentire Road although I suspect many roads have been omitted for the sake of clarity and replaced a red shaded areas indicating urban occupation. If the map in my article was drawn just before 1933, then Daniels map must be after that time.
11 Dec 2011 - Mistery Map:
I can concur with Tony Jones that the road opposite Beacontree Avenue linking Forest Road with the Woodford New Road, as shown on the map of Epping Forest posted in November 2009, is a mystery. My first recollection of the North Circular Road, from the Crooked Billet roundabout to the Waterworks corner, was immediately post war and I can confirm that at that time Beacontree Avenue was not part of the A406 as shown on the map. It ran along side the A406 for its length and houses were only built on one side of Beacontree Avenue facing the A406. Having looked on Google Earth this is still the case today. I attach a copy of the Ordnance Survey map dated 1964 which shows the North Circular Road before its route was altered to line up with its more direct journey to link up with the new M11. The area of the original route was returned back to forest land. The Survey Map shows that the North Circular Road did indeed run along side Beacontree Avenue and was not part of it. This map also shows that no road exists opposite Beacontree Avenue linking Forest Road with the Woodford New Road. My Godfrey map No.78.01 of Highams Park & Hale End dated 1914 shows that Wadham Road, from the Crooked Billet, had a natural route across the railway line(yes it was a level crossing) and into what is now called Hale End Road. Sky Peals Road was a minor road going straight ahead at the junction with Hale End Road. My Victorian map of 1888 shows that Wadham Road was originally named Blind Lane. The Godfrey map shows Beacontree Avenue bordering the forest and joining with Pentire Road. Unfortunately this 78.01 Godfrey map does not cover the area of Forest Road and the Woodford New Road and I suspect this would be included in the adjoining map No.78.02 of Woodford dated 1915. Perhaps this map would show if the mystery road was in place at this time.
10 Dec 2011 - Public Reply to Peter Pallett:
Hello Peter. More by luck than judgement, I stumbled over your email to Walthamstow Memories and thought I would at your request contact you.
I am so sorry to hear of the death of your father Harry. As I said he was a lovely man and I have very fond memories of going to your shop for my Nan, Jane Cracknell.
I can still remember the sights and smells of your shop. Am I correct in thinking that, sometimes, your mother worked there too? Was she a blonde lady? That bit is somewhat a blur, because most of all I loved the whirr of the bacon slicing machine, revealing slice after slice of bacon. Or, just to watch your Dad carve the ham.
I think I remember, if you were the grocery boy, your bike: was it a black one? Which sometimes was parked outside the shop?
I also wonder: did my memory play tricks on me, but was West Street as bad as I painted it? Because my Nan always went on and on about not going down there? So when I did and got a punch on the nose for apparently nothing - it did seem extreme, and to me as a six year old, divine intervention for disobeying the strict instructions.
I hope my memories brought back memories for you too and I wonder if your memories are similar to mine?
Looking forward to hearing from you. Kind regards and Seasons Greatings.
08 Dec 2011 - Family History:
I am looking for records of my grandma whom I believe was raised at St.Mary's. Her birth record show's Louise Crosby, born Sept.18, 1895. Father was James Crosby and Mother was Louise Chapman (Eda or Ede) other than census records, how do I find records from St. Mary's? Great Web Site by the way! Warm regards,
Deborah Lea WELLS
06 Dec 2011 - Maps:
Hi Daniel - could you please post the following: for those who are not aware there is a company who reproduce old ordnance survey maps. The ones that interest us are W'stow West 1894 and 1913, W'Stow East 1894 and 1914 and Highams Park & Hale End 1914. These certainly show the changes that the borough has gone through. They can be obtained from www.alangodfreymaps.co.uk (telephone no. 01207 583388). They are based in Co.Durham and nice peoeple to do business with. I ordered lunchtime and they were here the following day with a very reasonable £1 p & p per order. Regards
05 Dec 2011 - Lost & Found:
Hi Daniel, I am trying to trace Susan Deamer, who lived in Lawrence Avenue in the late 1960's and Malcolm Halsey, who lived in Valognes Avenue around the same time as well as others. In March 2012 David Saunders, Steven and Carol Bulled, Susan Miller, Denise Berry and myself are holding a reunion for ex pupils of Sidney Chaplin Secondary Modern School who attended at the same time as us. If anyone is interested in joining us, please get in touch. Regards
03 Dec 2011 - Wartime:
Daniel, During the war I can remember standing on the corner of Verulam Ave, by the allotments behind St. Saviour's Church and seeing in the distant a big block of flats collapsing. It was during the daytime and the flats must have been somewhere in or near Lea Bridge Road, but I do not think it was due to the bombing.
Also, I was evacuated during the War to my grandparents home in Wickford, Essex and my Grandad would say - when a doddlebug(?) passed overhead and the sound stopped - "e;That has landed in East London - Bethnal Green, Hackney, Shoreditch etc..."e;. And he was always right!
I can also remember being told that when they harvested potatoes in the fields around the home in Wickford, if you picked up any that were lying around, you would be sent to prison. One day, coming home from school, I picked up a couple and hid them under a shed in the garden and never told anyone - I should think they are mash now... Regards
01 Dec 2011 - Maps:
Hi Daniel - I have just been looking at an enquiry you made on 25th Nov. 2009, showing part of a map of Epping Forest of which you were trying to date. The map is unusual as it shows a road which, to my knowledge, has never existed! This is opposite Beacontree Ave and seems to link Forest Rd with Woodford New Rd. It certainly wasn't there when I was a child at the end of the 40's. The map shows tram lines which I dont believe ran in W'stow after the war, where the road is marked Beacontree Ave I don't believe this to be correct, as Beacontree Ave ran parallel to the North Circular and was never part of it; the yellow road marked Beacontree Ave which joins Wadham Rd is most certainly the N.Circular which was built around 1930, although the railway line which is at Wadham Bridge is shown to go over the road and not under... of course there was a level crossing there before the building of the N.Circular sometimes known as the Arterial Rd. If you have had any further response to this I would be interested to know. Thank you very much for the time and effort that you must put in to this website, as I am part of the generation holding the baton, we are the only personal link to the past. You may be aware of a firm called alangodfreymaps.co.uk. Regards
NOVEMBER MAILS - [Top]
26 Nov 2011 - General:
I got to hear of "Walthamstow Memories" through my young brother, Alan Ashton, who now lives in Calgary, Canada. He saw his name in an e-mail from Les Cole, who also emigrated to Calgary.
I was born in Thorpe Coombe in 1937, my sister Joan was born there in 1940 and Alan in 1943.
At the time we lived with our Maternal Grandfather in Higham Station Avenue, E4 but in 1948 we moved into 245 Priory Court 'N' Block 3rd Floor. Because of my brother's health we later moved to 41, a 1st Floor Flat in 'C' Block.
I left Walthamstow when I married in December 1956 and moved to Welwyn Garden City in Hertfordshire.
Until February 1960, I come back home most weekends as I missed my usual Saturday trip up & down the High Street...with a stop in Manzes for Pie & Mash. My parents and brother moved from Priory Court that month and came to live near me in WGC.
My sister never left Walthamstow because she married a local boy and after his National Service he came back to work in London.
Earlier this month you posted a picture of a Football team from Roger Ascham that was sent by my brother, it was quite a surprise to see him as I did not know he had sent it.
Through your site, I have made contact with Rodney Silk, he had mentioned Selwyn Avenue, I went to that School, both Infants & Juniors and then upto Sidney Burnell 1948-1952. He lived in the next road to me and although I did not know him, he knew quite a few people that I recall from my schooldays. Regards
15 Nov 2011 - Public Reply to Joyce Andersen:
Good afternoon, I cannot contact you by your (old) e-mail, but I would like to get in touch concerning the LESTER family. Only this week, I got a copy of the death certificate for Charles Lestor of 12 Clifford Road. He died in St Mary Abbots Hospital in Kensington on 23rd November 1952 aged 79. I would be delighted to discover where he was buried. Many thanks
15 Nov 2011 - Public reply to Len Hall:
No worries mate, As I confine my historical pieces to Walthamstow I was a little concerned that I had missed out on an important manufacturer. You are quite right about the use of animal products in the manufacture of perfumes etc. Examples are : Ambergris from whales, used as a fixative in perfume and a flavouring for foods and Civet oil from the gland of a Civet cat. In the 19th century, because of their location on the edge of east London, West and East Ham and Hackney were at the the site of many companies manufacturing noxious products eg: Glue made from animal bones, assorted leather products from the skins of animals, all sorts of chemical companies, etc. The evidence of this was seen at the 2012 Olympic games site, which is located on the site of heavily polluted poisonous ground. Many hundreds of thousands of tons of soil had to be removed before the builders could start. As the companies expanded and needed more room, many moved across the River Lea into Walthamstow. Indeed, it was the same process that occurred in Walthamstow in the 1970's, when companies moved away to more rural sites.
15 Nov 2011 - Public Reply to to Bill Bayliss:
Hi Bill, Being in the same year as Len Hall at school (and a very old STOWIE) I can just about remember going to what I thought was Yardley's (and can still smell the perfume), but the factory was in Lea Bridge Road not Blackhorse Road, but perhaps our memories are fading.....
Jean BROWN (nee TRUMAN)
15 Nov 2011 - General:
Hi, I am very interested to see how I can be a member of the Walthamstow web site. I was born in Colchester, Essex, (during the war in 1944), but I came back to live with my mother & grandad who lived at Winns ave. I moved away when I was about 7ish. But then returned back to Walthamstow when i was 15, and pleased to say that I had GREAT teenage years here. But then I moved on when i met my husband in 1966. I now live in Fleetwood (near Blackpool). So as you can see why I would love to be able to get onto this website that you have set up. Hoping that you will get back to me very soon.
From Daniel: "Walthamstow Memories" is a site open to anyone who is interested in the past (& present!) of this peculiar part of London, so you are warmly welcome to be a part of our community, and equally welcome to send in your personal memories of the share of life you have lived in Walthamstow, pictures you might like to share with our visitors and comments to previous posts. There is no formal application form to fill, but you may like to subscribe to our free newsletter.
I'm looking forward to hearing from you.
14 Nov 2011 - Memories:
I am enclosing a photo of me (Alan Ashton, third from the right)and the junior team, 1955. I cannot remember all the names, but here we go... Martin Humphreys (Goalie), Kenny Noble, Gary Hards, Brian Penalver (not too sure about my spelling), John DeMonte, went on to George Monoux, lived in the same block as me (Priory Court). The person on my right was Payne, sorry, can't remember his first name, but hopefully someone can fill in the names of the others.
We moved from Priory Court to Welwyn Garden City Herts.,in February 1960. In 1988 my wife and twin girls emigrated to Calgary, Western Canada. One of my sisters never moved
away from Walthamstow, she still lives in Penrhyn Avenue, five minutes walk from Roger Ascham Junior school. Many thanks
1955 - Ascham Junior School team
14 Nov 2011 - Public Reply to Bill Bayliss:
I am sorry if I caused some confusion re my information about Ford's of Dagenham and Yardley's perfume factory. I don't think I had suggested that they were in Blackhorse Lane and in fact the school did take us on escorted tours of those premises in Dagenham and West Ham.
I vaguely recall being informed that the base ingredients of perfumes and lip sticks came from animal bodies in those days. I think my visit would have been around 1954 so that would have been before the factory moved to Basildon. The Time line link was interesting too.
14 Nov 2011 - Public reply to Len Hall:
I hate to disappoint but I'm afraid that I can't help you at all with information about Ford's in Blackhorse Lane. However, I was intrigued by your mention of Yardley's.
My interest is because, as far as I know, Yardley never had a factory of their own in Blackhorse Lane. Indeed, from 1906 until 1966 their factory was at High Street, West Ham and in that year they moved to a large purpose built premises in Basildon.
Nevertheless, I believe that you are quite right when you say that your school visited a factory in Blackhorse Lane that had Yardley products. In fact, I would guess that the visit was really to the Bush Boake Allen factory in Blackhorse Lane, that probably made products for Yardley.
My reason for believing this is because I can't find any record at all of a Yardley factory in Blackhorse Lane but my wife, who is my authority on all things of Walthamstow, tells me that, when in the 1970's she worked for an auditing company carrying out stocktaking at Bush Boake Allen, she was able to purchase Yardley products from the company shop. She also advises me that Bush Boake Allen made a number of well known brand products for other companies at the factory.
Bush Boake Allen
There won't be very many people in Walthamstow who don't know of Bush Boake Allen, (BBA) They may not know the name of the factory but will know it by the variety of strong and sometimes nauseous smells that used to pervade the area.
BBA was formed in 1966 when a very large British chemical company - Albright & Wilson put together three different companies to form BBA. These companies were: W J Bush & Co (A manufacturer of flavourings and essential oils who were originally based at Ash Grove Works, Hackney), A Boake Roberts & Co Ltd (A producer of industrial chemicals based at Blackhorse Lane, Walthamstow) and Stafford Allen & Sons (A drug milling and grinding company based at Long Melford, Suffolk.
The new company was based at the former A Boake Roberts company site at Blackhorse Lane and researched and manufactured essences, flavourings and essential oils. In 1982 it was acquired by the International Paper Company of New Jersey, USA. It continued to expand and by late 1992 it had a presence in 30 countries throughout the world. In 1994, the company became a public company with assets of $80 million dollars and moved its headquarters from London to New Jersey. In 1997 the USA Union Camp Company became the largest shareholder. Today it is a subsidiary of USA based International Flavors & Fragrances who had sales of $2.6 billion dollars in 2010.
10 Nov 2011 - General:
Hello Daniel, The Ever Ready article by Bill Bayliss works perfectly now thanks for fixing it up so quickly.
I can still remember a Markhouse Road school outing to the Ever Ready factory and after a grand tour around the works they treated us kids to a slap up afternoon tea.
I am now looking forward to similar articles from Bill about Yardley's and Ford's of Dagenham, which were two other factories that we went on outings to.
7 Nov 2011 - History:
Hello Daniel, When I first came to Walthamstow in 1960, one of the major local employers was the Ever Ready Company . This was situated in Forest Road roughly opposite where Blackhorse Road underground station (That was opened in 1968) is now situated. I later got to know a man who, together with his six brothers, had all worked there. What made me curious about the factory was that all of them died from cancer. What, I didn't know then and I don't know now, was if their illness was connected with the conditions in the factory, in the years that they worked there, or if they had a genetic health problem.
Blackhorse Road was originally Black House Road. Somewhere along the way, it became Blackhorse Road.
[Click here to read Bill's article on the Ever Ready Co.]
6 Nov 2011 - General:
Up Your Street organises free walks for seniors called High Street Seniors. These are relaxed walks in the dark to reclaim our neighbourhood streets after dusk. The walks are social ambles where we keep together for an hour or so and end up at a book launch, a reading group, and/or a cafe/pub for a hot cuppa. The first walk was on International Women's Day 2011. The Clancy Group donated Hi-Viz jackets to us so we're safe and visible. Passers-by ask us what we're up to and cheer us on. We hope to be visible seniors as part of the Olympic and Paralympic Games 2012. Information is posted on www.upyourstreet.wordpress.com and sent out by email. The next High Street Seniors is on Dec 1st. We meet at Chat's Palace, Homerton Rd, Hackney (W15 bus) at 4pm and walk up to Hackney Museum for an evening event hosted by Patrick Vernon as we celebrate the UN Year of People of African descent. Refreshments and a good welcome guaranteed.
OCTOBER MAILS - [Top]
23 Oct 2011 - Lost & Found:
Hi, I was wondering if you can possibly help me trace my Father please? His name is Trevor Alan Cornell and lived in Campus Road, E17 until 2002. His DOB is 19/2/1956-7? Any help would be extremely appreciated. Yours in anticipation
23 Oct 2011 - General:
Hello, I was wondering if anybody had any memories of the Wrighton Furniture/Aircraft Factory on Billet Road, Walthamstow that closed around 1967. The factory used to make bodies and wings for the World War II 'Mosquito' aircraft. Can you say what stands on the factory site now, as it was a large six acre site? Is nearby by Wrighton Road connected with the factory. Best regards and many thanks
22 Oct 2011 - Memories:
Daniel, I saw this picture in the Daily Mail in 2007. The photo was taken in 1947 and I kept it because one of the men in the background looks very much like my father, so I feel sure that it must have been taken in Walthamstow High Street. I wonder if anyone else recognises anyone in the picture which would confirm that I am right about the location? Regards,
21 Oct 2011 - Memories:
Good evening. First time I have contacted you. It won't be the last! I read a PDF file from Carol Ledger concerning 50/60s in Grove Road. She mentioned Harry the grocer. He was my father, who only died last year aged 94. I will be writing to you with some stories and pictures about the times, but I should be grateful if you would contact Carol and give her my email address, as I would like to update her memories as well. I was also the delivery boy for the shop, which was PALLS STORES at 85 Grove Road. I have tried to find a link to Carol through your site but cant find one. Thanks,
From Daniel: Dear Peter, I've looked up in our records, but cannot find Carol's email either: I hope she still visits our site and sees your message...
I'm eagerly awaiting for your stories & pictures!
17 Oct 2011 - Public Reply to K. Yilmaz:
I cannot help but wonder if Carisibrooke Road was named after a member of the nobility. Historically, many streets have been named in groups or clusters with a particular theme in mind and they still are. In the last seven years of my career, I was responsible for approving or objecting to local authorities, on behalf of all the emergency services in Greater London, all proposed new street and building names or changes of name. In areas where there were new building developments entailing the creation of several new streets, the local councils nearly always settled on a theme when choosing the names. Renaming of streets is rare and normally only undertaken in special cases. Rillington Place is one such example.
Looking at the street names near or adjoining Carisbrooke Road they also have the following names of the nobility. Lord Palmerston, Lord Buxton, Lord Carisbrooke, Lord Northcote, Lord Mansfield, Lord Somers, Lord Apsley and so on. I know with my dealings with the street naming officers of all the London Boroughs that the reasons why particular streets were given their names has often been forgotten in the mist of time.
17 Oct 2011 - Public Reply to K. Yilmaz:
Hello Kerim, Re: Carisbrooke Road, Walthamstow.
I've got it in the 1911 Census. Schedule 108-149. House numbers: 1-77. If you want specific information about the occupancy of a particular property - please come back to me.
17 Oct 2011 - Personal Memories:
I think I left Winns Avenue Juniors in 1965. Then I left William Fitt in '68 to move on to the High School at top of Church Hill. I think I was 14 then.
I REMEMBER>>>> Each year we would go back to school after the summer holidays to be greeted by the smell of the newly varnished floor. The new Crayola crayons in a tin, new pencils, new rubber, new wooden ruler. Going to school one day when I was in the infants and realising my shoelace was undone. So I sat on one of those low Warner front garden walls and realised to my horror that the coldness seeping into my posterior was from the fact I had no knickers on!!! Worse than that, it was PE day and I was in the infants when you did PE IN your knickers. So I sat in class dreading the moment when the teacher would say 'get ready for PE' and when the moment came, I got up and went over to the teachers desk, and burst into tears!!! Big mistake, the whole class fell silent, they realised what the problem was and I spent the rest of the day trying to stop the sods from lifting my skirt... happy days.In the Juniors, everyone selecting their PE kit from a box at the beginning of the year and I got there last, as a consequence I ended up with a pair of bottle green bloomers that had proper legs on that went down to my knees!!!
The 'Quill pen' which we graduated to, when we were old enough. If you wanted to waste time in a lesson you would let it drop it so the point of the nib would stick into the floor and give it a twist snapping off the points, "Miss can I have a new nib" I NEVER did that... Glory, in the 4th year of the juniors, Blue Bic ball pens in a yellow rack, no more ink monitor and squares of blotting paper. The smell from the furnace that used to come out of the coal shute in the wall of the school next to the playground. Mrs. Day selling coconut ice. Nice old Mr Williams. I met him years later and he still remembered me. I was amazed. Progressing to the new blackboards which could be shoved up and down, they had to be 'broken-in' with white chalk for a month before coloured chalks could be used on them - great excitement when that day came. Cleaning the blackboard rubber by banging it against the wall of the school. Teachers deftly hurling either chalk, or in extreme cases, the blackboard rubber, as a way of getting the attention of some rogue. Usually male... Martin Taylor braining himself in PE by sliding on a hoop and nutting a radiator, ending up at hospital with concussion. Running around the playground with a fist out in front calling 'exterminate, exterminate' - A la Dr Who. Playing marbles in the manhole covers. British Bulldog.
The fortnightly visits to Mr Speakman's at High Beech for nature study. Where we would sit in a room to have our lunch surrounded by tanks with critters in and all manner of interesting things like stoneage flints, owl pellets etc... The sloping floors in the old senior school. Me doing country dancing with David Huddle and spinning him clean off his feet. Me and Susan usually did country dancing together and spent most of the time peeing ourselves with laughing.. I well remember the let down when we went to William Fitt and discovered Mrs. Bateman didn't see the funny side. The day in the 4th year when it rained and the water level in Elphinstone Road rose so high that we had to leave the school by the infants school playground. The spooky outdoor toilets that flushed themselves. Getting forced into the boys toilets...(in the infants)...
Lynne ROUE (Linda BEALES)
17 Oct 2011 - Topography:
Daniel, I am a History teacher at Kelmscott School, and I am currently researching Walthamstow history with the pupils and in particular the history of their roads. However we are having a few problems with Cainsbrooke Road, we can't locate it in the 1911 census, could you help us?
From Daniel: I think you might be referring to Carisbrooke Rd. (name comes from Carisbrooke, Isle of White). The road was planned in 1879, first occupied in 1884 and still existing today. I have no further info... can anyone else help?
16 Oct 2011 - Public Reply to Len Hall:
Hi Len, It was good to read the continuation of your Memories saga. I'm especially delighted to discover the Pet Loss Dog's Last Will website included in your recent Memories episode (sincere & grateful thanks to 'our' Daniel for sharing it with you in the first place, too!).
One of my cousins has been a carer of Rescue Dogs & Birds for many years - up until recently, he had 4. It almost broke his heart when the eldest of his dogs died, so I sent my personal, heartfelt words of comfort to soothe his soul.
More recently, another of the dogs became very poorly & was diagnosed with several tumours. Both he & his [estranged] wife continue to pay for the very expensive treatment to save her life - as one would for a child. The Dog's Last Will touched my soul & I'll be sharing it with my cousin - who, as an animal carer, I'm sure will greatly appreciuate the sentiments.
Ha! Ha! Your 'new' recruit, Freddy sounds like one of the dogs we had in East London when I was a kid - one word from me & it did what it liked! For all that, it was a cherished little friend.
Kindest regards to you & yours.
16 Oct 2011 - Lost & Found:
Hello, Daniel - I simply can't thank you enough for the Walthamstow website. Never in a million years would I have thought I would find Jean :)
What a wonderful service you do for many people like me, besides providing a place to go back in time and read others' memories. Yes, I'm another one who remembers the wriggling eels on the stalls in High Street - I felt so sorry for them LOL
15 Oct 2011 - Public Reply to Ashlea Simpson:
There is so much information stored up in your memory, Ashlea, and I am so glad that you have published it for everyone to see. Maybe someone out there can shed some light as to where those people are now.
I know Pendlestone Road is still there, as I have just looked at it on Google Earth: that is a great tool for strolling down memory lane.
As for my own memories, I have recently sent Daniel an update of what I have been doing for the last couple of years and he tells me it will be published very soon.
One has to keep the old 'grey matter' active as if you don't use it you lose'it they say.
15 Oct 2011 - Public Reply to Jean Vincent:
Jean? I can't believe it ! ! ! Getting your email absolutely made my heart sing LOL You will never know how many times over all these decades I have thought of you, wondered how you are, where you are. Gosh, we were such good friends way back about 1945, 1946 and I remember on a trip back to England I visited you and your father but that must have been in the '60s. I never, ever, thought my blurb on the Walthamstow Memories site would result in finding you. I am speechless - almost. This is fantastic.
15 Oct 2011 - Public Reply to Ashlea Simpson:
Hello Ashlea, I am Jean Field formerly of 13, Pendlestone Road, I tried to send you a private email with some school photos but it did not recognize your email. Regards
14 Oct 2011 - Memories Section:
Hi! Just spent 3 hours on this site: great reading! A little about myself: born 1940, attended Chapel End Jnrs and Infants. From Woodend road moved to Higham Hill area, then to Priors Croft and William Elliott Whittingham. I would like to hear from school mates Derek Watts, Brian Bonsor and all. When i left in 1955 to start work h.t.b. Blackhorse Lane. I sent messages on friendsreunited, but no response as yet: can any one help out there? Regards
7 Oct 2011 - Public Reply to Len Hall:
I loved reading your Walthamstow memories. Thank you. I'm 72 now and left the UK in 1958 for the U.S. I was born Sept. 1939 with an English mother and German father who had moved to the UK in 1938 but, since he was considered "the enemy" he was shipped off to a camp in Ottawa.
I lived with my mother and her mother at 37 Pendlestone Rd. I remember all the air raid sirens and black-out curtains, having to rush down to the air raid shelter. One night my grandmother held me in her right arm and took a cup off the kitchen dresser with the other and knocked on the wall of our semi-detached. Our neighbor, Mrs. Clements, knocked backed to signify she was alright. And I can also remember being in my pram in the back yard on a sunny afternoon for my nap and I heard Roderick, the baby next door, out there in his pram in his yard, crying. Like a tv skit, I remember thinking, "Shall I cry, too?" After some consideration, I did :) Later, as a toddler, I recall I couldn't unlock the door of the W.C. off the kitchen during a raid and Mrs. Clements put her nephew thru the window to unlock the door and get me out. LOL Later our house was bombed and we evacuated to Northampton, returning to Pendlestone Road but sharing a house with a Mrs. White at no. 42, across from where we'd lived. I remember playing on the bomb site where our house had been.
And I went to Maynard Rd School and never forget the very first hymn I learned - All Things Bright and Beautiful. I believe my teacher's name was Miss Boep, a very sweet lady. My father was shipped back to the UK and we moved to Brighton for ten years.
But every holiday I would spend with my grandparents who had a new house in Highams Park.
And our wartime neighbors, the Clements, had also moved to Highams Park, first to the Hale End Rd where they lived in a flat and later to a new house on The Avenue.
Every Friday I would go with my grandfather (who worked in an aeroplane factory in Coventry during the war) for lunch at some old gentlemen's type eatery on Hoe Street, close to the High Street, and then we would walk down High Street and look at all the things being sold from the stalls. It was wonderful; I loved it.
And sometimes I would go with my grandmother to the Co-operative Society meetings on High Street. It's all so clear in my mind, even after all these years. I always wonder what happened to my friend, Jean Field, who used to live at 13 Pendlestone Rd.
Anyway, I just wanted to touch base with you and thank you for sharing your memories. Those were terrible times for so many countless people, but the ethic of the people certainly puts these current times to shame. So much whining about hard times nowadays but they really don't have a clue :) Oh, re Rochford, when I was about four to six years old, my grandmother and I used to sometimes take the train there and stay a while with my great-grandmother. And on Thursdays we would go to the Rochford market. And I often would walk up to that old empty farm next to the ancient church built by King Canute of the Danes. I would wander about both those places on my own for an afternoon. You probably recall them.
PS.: One day, living at 42 Pendlestone (across from our bombed house) I suddenly realized how very quiet it was. I asked my mother why that was. She said: "The war's over." I asked: "What's a war"? I don't remember her answer :( Also, the family who lived right behind us had died in their air raid shelter one night. A bomb or V2 had gone straight down the entrance to it and blown them all up.
PPS: I also recall my Grandad walking into a tree in the blackout and knocking out two teeth - only teeth he lost in his whole life :) He used to brush his teeth with soot - apparently it was a well-known method back then (LOL)! And I recall those white painted rings around all the trees on streets, supposedly so people would see them in the blackout and not walk into them! I think that Brit working next door here may be from Wickford - will have to ask him next time I see him over there. My middle name that I go by, Ashlea, is actually taken from my great-grandparents' place in Rochford. It was called Ash Lea - meadow of ash trees. I always thought that was neat so I go by Ashlea instead of my first Christian name, Janet.
7 Oct 2011 - Public Reply to Alan Salter:
Hello Alan. On the assumption that your ex girl friend married I looked at the the Birth, Marriage and Death register entries from 1962 onwards. From this I found that a Valerie A Marshall marriage to Roy A Mowatt was registered in the 3rd quarter of 1962 at Epping, Essex. I checked the Facebook and Friends Reunited sites without any luck then I checked out BT telephone and address listings but there is not a listing for them. Unfortunately, since the advent of the commercialisation of the telephone systems people now have a diverse variety of telephone providers.According to the 192.com website a Valerie A Mowatt and Roy A Mowatt are listed on the Electoral registers for 2002-5 living in Wa;thamstow, E17. Unfortunately, this is a 'pay to view' the details site. However, you might want to take a punt on this one.
Respects and good searching,
5 Oct 2011 - Lost & Found:
I have been looking for an Ex-Girlfriend of mine for some time now. Her name was Valerie Marshall, and she lived off of Blackhorse Road, in either Cornwallis Rd, or Edward Rd. I am talking about 1962/3. I would just like to say G'day, as I now live in Melbourne Australia. If anyone has any info please message me. Regards
5 Oct 2011 - Lost & Found:
What a fantastic site this is. I was looking for people I went to school with at William Morris County Technical School, I left in about 1959. I was looking for Jean Holland, Jean Webster, Marion Vaughn, Edward Devy. Will have to go back to my photos to remember the others. I think Mr Williamson was our headmaster. Mr. P/G. Gasson took us for Economic and public Affairs and Miss Murdie took us for French. Mr.Westlake took us for English. Strange but at 69 I still refer to him as Mr. Gasson!!!!I also attended Winns Avenue primary School in Elphinstone Road where we lived. My brother and sister also attended there. Our name was then Kimmings. Ann, Pam and William. I found this site by accident and now live in Australia but have fond memories of Walthamstow, Lloyds Park and Pembroke Road where my grandmother and Auntie Annie Bowman lived. I also attended William McGuffie School for a year before going to William Morris via the 13+ exam. Valerie Barker, MARY Scott were also names I remember well. Especially Valerie who lived in Carnation Way I think it was. Anyway, enough rambling will have to get my thoughts together I was so pleased to find this site I had to write. We often went to Epping Forest with dad on his bicycle (a dickie seat on the crossbar) and had smith's crisps with the blue wrapped salt and Tizer on Saturdays from the off license on the corner of I think it was Bemsted Road. Anyway, hope the site thrives.!
3 Oct 2011 - Public Reply to Janet Wright:
Dear Janet, I was a Waltham Forest community activist for over 30 years (I was the founding Chair of Waltham Forest Foster Care Association, Waltham Forest Residents & Tenants Association and with my wife ran the Priory Court Youth Club) and I fully support and applaud the work that you and other people are doing to help make our Borough a better place for residents to live.
The reason that I wrote an explanation of the 'Mill' for the 'Walthamstow Memories' site was because a large proportion of the readership now don't live in Walthamstow and are therefore often unaware of current issues and developments in the area.
As a Waltham Forest resident, I am only too sadly aware of the continual chipping away of our cultural heritage and I could add substantially to your list of cuts. For instance: in Walthamstow there has been the loss of the Lloyd Park theatre and in Chingford the loss of the Louisa Oakes Centre, Friday Hill House and Friday Hill Library. Indeed, in Chingford there virtually isn't any 'out of school' education. Presently, the Council intends to close both South Chingford and Leytonstone Libraries and Hale End, Higham Hill, Wood Street and Lea Bridge Libraries are to be open for only 30 hours per week. Exacerbating the situation is the fact that community groups have been 'priced out' of hiring Council venues for local activities.
I would however take issue with you in respect of William Morris House. This has changed from being a Art Gallery for 'elite' users to a cultural centre for local people and will be enhanced, in the near future, by the jointly funded development to Lloyd and Aveling Parks. I also dispute the claim that the running costs for St James St Library were only £70,000 per year. I suspect that this figure excludes staffing costs that would form the major cost component. I would also point out that, if as seems likely, the proposed jointly funded scheme for the development of the Walthamstow reservoirs proceeds, the result will form a immensely valuable heritage resource for the Borough and will be particularly accessible to residents in your area.
I too was outraged by the hike in Councillor payments because I am totally against the cabinet system of local council governance and of having paid Councillors. Nevertheless, it is absolutely clear that the massive cuts that Waltham Forest Council are making are as a result having to make savings of £65 million over a 4 year due to cuts in Government grants caused by overall economic recession in a situation where they can't increase their revenue by raising local rates.
2 Oct 2011 - Public Reply to Bill Bayliss:
Dear Bill, thanks for your coverage of The Mill in Coppermill Lane -- the former St James Street Library, and a terrific example of what people can do for themselves. But as a founding member of St James Street Library Campaign, may I correct one essential point, please?
"02 Sep 2011 - Local History: ...As a result of the economic situation, Waltham Forest Council has been forced to make cuts in its spending. In its desire to protect front line services, the Council has made cuts to the less essential services. Unfortunately, this included St James Library in Coppermill Lane...."
St James Street Library didn't close recently to protect frontline services, but in 2007 when it helped fund a huge payrise for the councillors!
This was part of what the local newspaper, the Waltham Forest Guardian, dubbed the "Cultural Cull". The council made savage cuts in all kinds of cultural services, from evening classes to the world-famous William Morris gallery.
This was long before the economic crisis. It coincided with Waltham Forest councillors voting themselves a nearly 30% increase in their allowances, which had previously been around the London average. This immediately cost an extra £230,000 a year. Closing St James Street Library saved the council £70,000 a year (their own figures), which paid for nearly a third of the councillors' pay rise. Another £56,000 or so was saved by cutting specialist staff and opening hours at the William Morris gallery, the jewel in the borough's cultural crown. And so on, causing losses throughout the borough's cultural heritage.
St James Street Library Campaign fought for four years, first to get the library reopened and then -- the council having solidly refused to consider this from the start -- to return the building to community use in any way we could.
Our big breakthrough came when we joined forced with Blackhorse Action Group last year, to oppose the council's threat to sell the building to developers. We sent out a plea to all supporters, one of them put us in touch with NESTA and the story then continues as you say.
The Cultural Cull also gave rise to numerous local campaigns, including Antiscrap, which managed to reduce the damage to the William Morris Gallery and Vestry house museum. More widely, the lack of cultural provision by Waltham Forest council has inspired a huge range of projects by local people "doing it for themselves" in art, music, drama, book provision and so on.
I hope you can post this clarification. St James Street Library Campaign was a long and lonely battle, in the face of rock-solid opposition from the council and with no help from local councillors (until Clare Coghill was elected last year -- a much-needed breath of fresh air). As the years passed, though we kept the campaign alive and in the local press, I secretly thought we were banging our heads on a brick wall. But I'd like our eventual success, with the help of the local community, to offer encouragement to other campaigners.
All the best,
1 Oct 2011 - Local History:
Waltham Forest Radical History Workshop
Striking a Light The Matchwomen and their place in history
Louise Raw will talk about her book Striking a Light: a new history of the Bryant & May matchwomen's strike of 1888. Her book celebrates the achievement of a remarkable group of young East End women, who took on a ruthless cartel and won. Raw proves conclusively that these women changed the entire course of British labour history, and were in fact the mothers of the modern union movement.
The life histories of matchwomen like Eliza Martin and Mary Driscoll, who were instrumental in the strike, are told for the first time.
Copies of the book will be available for signing.
Tuesday 11 October, 7.30pm, Orford House Social Club - 73 Orford Road Walthamstow E17 9PU - £2.50/£1.50
Gillian LAWRENCE - "Up your street"
SEPTEMBER MAILS - [Top]
25 Sep 2011 - Personal Stories:
Hello Daniel, The attachment tells the story of Henry Allpass and of two of his sons who gave their lives in action in WWI. Henry Allpass, without any doubt, was the most influential headmaster in the history of Monoux Grammar school, His son Esmond, was killed leading his troops in action at Suvla Bay in Gallipoli which was one of the bloodiest episodes in the 'Great War'. A year later, his oldest son, Henry, also died leading his troops in an attack on German trenches on the Somme in France. The Somme battlefront carries some poignant memories for me because both my maternal and paternal Grand-fathers fought on this front. One returned home safely and the other (Who, I never knew) died a few years later from the effects of poison gas.
(Read it HERE in the "Personal Stories" section)
A man called Eric Bogle who, in my view, is the greatest social song writer of our generation wrote two songs that tell us all we need to know about WWI. The first 'And The Band Played Waltzing Matilda' is about the Australian soldiers involvement in the carnage at Gallipoli. The second 'No Man's Land' (That many will know as 'Willie McBride'or 'The Green Fields Of France') is a story about a young man who died in the war. Both of these have been 'covered' and performed by many leading artists. If you want to listen to these go to [HERE] (The Dubliners version of ' And The Band Played Waltzing Matilda' and [HERE] (John McDermott's version of 'The Green Fields Of France') or if you want the lyrics go to:[HERE]
Respects and regards,
21 Sep 2011 - Family History: My Grandmother May Birch nee Ireland was brought up by Elizabeth Ireland the partner of Thomas Ireland in 1911 Census. We the family have tried to find May in the 1901 Census and have failed. We are appealing to anyone who delves into the local archives there and help us to unravel her mystery. 1911 Census 61 Cambridge Rd., Walthamstowe, shows Thomas Ireland with Elizabeth and young Thomas Ireland aged 15 crossed out (we found him in hospital) Albert (born Henry Albert in 1900) aged as 13 and lastly May (born Leytonstone ) aged 11. Thomas Ireland in 1901 Census has occupation of Flower Hawker and is named as Thomas George which was the surname that Elizabeth used also but we know it is the same family as young Albert is aged 1 in this Census, along with his older half brother Walter George and young Thomas Ireland (a surviving twin of which the other twin Elizabeth died in 1898 aged 2)Where was Oxford Terrace on the Chigwell Road? as the was where Walter George!
was living also further on the same block was his older brother William George with his wife Kate. Can anyone help to check out Snakes Lane East for either William George or Joseph George or Albert Ireland around late 1930's early 1940's. We know that Albert Ireland moved his family to Suffolk in 1941, to get away from the bombing that was taking place about this time. Hoping someone, just someone can have some spare time to help us. We have also just recently learned that there was a children's home in this town at the turn of the century, did my grandmother come from there? Thank you to whoever can and is willing to help, regards
21 Sep 2011 - Family History: Hallo Daniel, I have just discovered your site and hope you can help me. My father, GEORGE DAVIS, aged 40, living at 487 Forest Road, Walthamstow, married my Mother RUBY GIPPS, at the parish church of St Luke, Walthamstow on 26 May, 1912. I do not have a Birth Certificate for him or a known date of birth, without which, and with such a common name, I am unable to research my ancestry. I am now aged 97, and have little time left,so anything you can do or suggest would be greatly appreciated. Sincerely, Bernard Davis.( p.s. I was born at 66 Brookdale Road, Walthamstow.)
07 Sep 2011 - Public Reply to Jeanette (2 Aug 2011): Hi Jeanette, I think the name of the factory at the junction of St. James street and Markhouse road was Dollows, my wife worked there when she was young. Regards.
05 Sep 2011 - Postcard Gallery: Have you any information on who gave you picture postcard number 65 Walthamstow - Young girls? I believe the girls may be relatives of mine, and I would love to contact anyone who has information. Many thanks.
04 Sep 2011 - Local History:
Hello Daniel, It is sad to report that the Walthamstow Athletic Club is on the point of closing down. This club had a 110 year history beginning life in 1901 as Priory Harriers and using facilities at the Bell Public House. In the 1930s, with the help of Colonel Sir Stuart Mallinson, the club moved to Wadham Lodge and then became known as Wadham Harriers. In 1953 the Chingford Athletic Club was formed and I was one of its founder members. Unfortunately, mainly due to lack of facilities, this club had a short life of only 10 years and those members who were still active joined Wadham Harriers. Soon after this Wadham Harriers became Walthamstow Athletic Club. The club track racing was held on a grass track at the London Transport sports ground in Wadham Road, However, a big boost was the building of the all weather athletics track on what was part of Chestnut Farm behind the Town Hall in 1987. Despite these excellent facilities the club appears not to be able to attract enough local talent to warrant its continued existence. Those members remaining will be joining another long established club Orion Harriers. Orion Harriers were founded in 1911 and are a Chingford based club that concentrates on road and cross country running. At one time they were a men only club but now have lady members and also now do track running. Their cross country headquarters are at Jubilee Retreat, Bury Road, Chingford. A detailed history of the Walthamstow Athletic Club can be read on their still active website www.walthamstowac.btinternet.co.uk Details of Orion Harriers can be found on their website www.orionharriers.org.uk A rather sad time for Walthamstow. Kind regards,
02 Sep 2011 - Local History:
Further to Richard Asman's post on 1st September "A People's History of the EMD/GRANADA CINEMA", this is for tor those readers who don't know the history of 'The Mill', Coppermill Lane.
As a result of the economic situation, Waltham Forest Council has been forced to make cuts in its spending. In its desire to protect front line services, the Council has made cuts to the less essential services. Unfortunately, this included St James Library in Coppermill Lane.
Initially, this was opposed by a group of residents. However, they recognised the inevitability of the closure of the Library and formed a group to acquire the premises and run it as a volunteer operated Community Centre. The Coppermill Group is made up of people from the local residents association, from Blackhorse Action Group and from people from the St James St Library campaign. They were successful in obtaining a one year NESTA* community grant to help facilitate this objective.
The Community Centre already runs a number of local arts projects, including a 'pop up' cinema and is hosting exhibitions of local interest. Further information about The Mill can be found on the Facebook site: http://www.facebook.com/the.mill.e17
*NESTA is the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts - an independent body with a mission to make the UK more innovative.
AUGUST MAILS - [Top]
29 Aug 2011 - Local History:
Hi Daniel, Below are full details of the EMD/Granada cinema 'People's History' exhibition which runs 3-4 & 10-11 September. Thanks for mentioning our request for memories on your site - I had a couple of responses which will be included in the exhibition. If you are able to share this info on the Walthamstow Memories site, that would be grand!
Eight decades of memories of Walthamstow's treasured cinema celebrated for a brand new exhibition:
"A People's History of the EMD/GRANADA CINEMA"
From organ recitals, the Beatles and James Brown to iconic movies and wrestling, from courting couples to local legend Uncle Ernie - come along in September and find out more! This new exhibition has seen Save Walthamstow Cinema talking to residents old and new about their memories of going to Walthamstow's 80 year old picturehouse on Hoe Street. The building is one of only a handful of UK cinemas to receive a Grade II* listing from English Heritage. This new exhibition captures the warmth and passion the people of Walthamstow and beyond have for this beautiful cinema that has been at the heart of the area's entertainment and social scene for generations.
"We bought our tickets; beautiful, snug rectangles of card, generally grey if memory serves, which we carried as if they were golden tickets for entry to Willy Wonka's chocolate factory..."
Photos and memorabilia, drawings, filmed tales screened in a mini cinema as well as personal wishes and hopes written on I Love Walthamstow EMD/Granada whiteboards help bring people's passion for this beautiful cinema to life. The exhibition will be held at The Mill, Coppermill Lane on 3-4 September 10am-4pm and Daisy's Coffee and Gifts, Hoe Street on 10-11 September 10am-4pm.
"When my father was in his late teens, he held the crowds back while the Beatles played on the stage at the Cinema. How about that for history?"
Visitors to the exhibition will also be invited to contribute by writing a memory or wish on an I LOVE WALTHAMSTOW EMD/GRANADA postcard or have their photo taken with their own full size placard. They can read the stories already gathered and hear them on our video clips in our mini-cinema.
"No other cinema had quite the same atmosphere and beauty as this one..."
A preview of the interviews recorded for the exhibition has been selected by Walthamstow International Film Festival for screening and Save Walthamstow Cinema are hoping it will also be shown on the Big Screen in Walthamstow's central square.
"There was the feeling that you were somebody walking up the curved staircase from the foyer"
Visitors can find out about a couple married 42 years after their first date at a Granada concert, listen to the life of a schoolgirl usherette and hear about sheltering in the cinema while air raid sirens sounded. And, of course, those who couldn't or didn't want to pay trying to sneak in past local legend, Uncle Ernie, the doorman who worked at the cinema for 50 years. The luxurious Arabian Nights interior is brought to life again in these fantastic stories reaching across the decades including the thrill of seeing the Beatles live onstage or iconic movies like Star Wars for the very first time.
Details can be found on the Art Trail website www.e17arttrail.co.uk, at www.savewalthamstowcinema.org and through saveourcinema on Facebook and Twitter.
For more information, please contact: email@example.com
27 Aug 2011 - Public Reply to Doreen:
Hello again WM and in particular Doreen Merrett, it is nice to be mentioned in dispatches as they say.
Memories of the A11
The A11 was always a very popular riding area for club cyclists and as you say the Ugley pub was often frequented, as a favourite RTTC course known as the E1 started at the 32nd milestone in the area near Kiora hill.
Of course it was also well known the world over because it was the home of 'the Ugley women's institute' I wonder how many times they hear that old joke.
There were hundreds of cyclists out at the weekends in those days and we would often stay in a club hut on the edge of the Stansted airport perimeter, Quite a few London based cycling clubs had huts there and I think some are still there to this day.
In my last years in the United Kingdom we bought a house in Church Road, Stansted called 'Oakdene' and it is still there today but vastly remodeled as our 1/3rd acre blot now houses 5 homes.
Sawbridgeworth was also a very popular cycling area, and there were several cafes on the A11 where it was not unusual to see a hundred or more racing bikes all leaning against the fence. And in those days one didn't have to worry about getting your bike stolen either.
These days racing still goes on in the area but the majority of competitors turn up in cars on the morning of the event and then depart the same way so the social side of club riding has almost gone.
In the 50's and 60's it was commonplace to see a hundred bike capes at the side of the road with personal possessions under them whilst the owner was 'up the road' somewhere trying to do a PB (personal best time) in either a 25 or 50 mile time trial.
There would be a timekeeper sending the guys off one every minute and a few at the turn, which would be 12.5 miles or 25 miles up the road, and another timekeeper getting the times as they returned.
Wonderful Memories of the A11 but it will never be the same again. I used to ride from Stansted to Cambridge every day to work at one time and the sight of Audley End Mansion early in the morning was a sight to behold.
25 Aug 2011 - General:
I have just discovered you site and have read a lot of the messages, which awakened so many memories of growing up in Walthamstow. I was born in Thorpe Coombe nursing home and lived in Barclay Road with my parents and my Mother's parents. My other Grandparents lived in Stratford and it was on a day in the autumn that my Dad was pushing my pram over to visit them that people came running out to drag him "under cover" as war had been declared! Mum and I were shipped off to North Essex to stay with an aunt while Dad worked on the Railway in London and did fire watching at night, grandad was in the ARP. We returned just in time for the Blitz and one of my memories is of spending nights under the stairs or in the brick built shelter in the tiny garden. At a later date I was in bed with measles and Dr Helen Watson visited, a land mine exploded in a nearby road and the doctor and I ended up flattened under the ceiling which had fallen in the blast. I was then shipped off to my Aunt again, by now her house was very near an American air base, I was probably no safer but I remember being given gum and sweets. After the war I started at St Marys infants school with Miss Davis and Miss McLellan, moving to the junior school for a year or so before it was closed down and I was sent to Maynard Road for 2 years before going to the High School.
I could go on for pages more, but will just mention some of the things which come to mind. The Granada cinema and the Walthamstow Grenadiers, 6d on Sat. morning. Tuckwells the butcher in Beulah road and Mr Gray who ran the paper and sweet shop and moved to marry a widow on the I.O.W and run a guest house. Does Len Hall remember the pub at Ugley, where cyclists often stopped, run by a family called Ponder? One of the cyclists, Jim Revell, married their daughter Jennifer. Does anyone remember that opposite the alms houses and museum was a yard where a man called Joe kept horses, one was used to pull a cart (rag and bone?) the horses were Silver, Duchess, Billy and Bobby. My friend and I learnt to ride there and were always hanging around the stables much to my Mum's disgust. At 5 shillings a lesson I had to save for a month between rides! Also Saturday evening concert parties in the Lloyd park pavilion. I married at St Stephens church in 1962 and moved away.
Thank you for setting up this site: I shall make a point of reading it often - I have old photos but it will take a while to locate them, regards.
Doreen MERRETT (nee WARNER)
25 Aug 2011 - Personal Stories:
Hello Daniel, I'm sending you history pieces as I remember and research them. This piece not only tells the story of what was once a local landmark but also shows very clearly the price that Walthamstow paid in just one V rocket attack during WWII. (Read it HERE in the "Personal Stories" section)
Respects and regards,
24 Aug 2011 - Public reply to Bill Bayliss: Dear Bill, Many, many thanks for your email. We had the results of the 1911 census but not the 1901. We thought the house had been finished a bit later although we did find a piece of newspaper hidden on the side of the fireplace, which was dated sometime in 1900. The 1901 census confirms it was not old recycled paper, but a current one! Great news!
As you have probably filled the first gap, we shall certainly endeavour to fill the others. Big thanks for taking the trouble and warmest regards.
Consuelo and Steve GREEN
24 Aug 2011 - Public reply to Consuelo Green:
Hello Consuelo, In 2010 you wrote:
We bought 6 Falmer Road in December 1986, from a family called Blackledge, who had lived there a few years and then moved to Wales. We know our house was -- either originally or at some time in its history --, two flats (6A and 6B), as we found a gas meter card when we renovated the house. Kind regards Consuelo GREEN
In a belated response I would advise that I have ascertained that in 1901 there were two families occupying the property. These were Herbert & Eva Tayor (Both aged 23) He was a Joiner working 'at home'. The other family were James & Constance Collins (Aged 33 &: 30) and their three sons aged 6, 5 and nine months. He was a 'Chief Clerk'.
In 1911 there are again two families in occupation. One being Walter & Martha Clark (Aged 31 and 25) and Henry, their two year old son. Walter was employed as a Wheelwright and they had been marroed for 4 years.
The other family were Joseph and Annie Twist (Aged 52 years) and Stanley, their 8 year old son. Joseph worked as a Bookbinder, Forwarder and Cutter and they had been married for 27 years.
I hope that this helps fill the gaps. Other informatiopn may be obtained from the Land Registry Office. Unfortunately, there will be a cost for this. www.landregistryservices.org . Respects
23 Aug 2011 - Local Bands: Ian Dury never lived in Diana Rd. I lived there and I was Ian's girl friend when he was studying at Walthamstow School of Art. So he was often seen in Diana Road. Regards
Julia BROMFIELD (nee Skinner)
22 Aug 2011 - Barbell Club: Hi Daniel and John, just thought I could help a little with one of your photographs 'Walthamstow barbell men' posted in June 2010, the gentleman standing 3 from the left on the top row is my father Albert Sholl (Bert) and the chap top left on that row is an old friend of his Bill Burgess. Unfortunately I cannot e-mail directly to the chap who took the photo, but if there was a way of contacting him I would be grateful, thanks.
18 Aug 2011 - Public reply to Bill Bayliss Hi Bill, Thanks for the social history relating to 25 December marriages. Like some of your ancestors, I've got others who were married on Xmas Day, too. I'd assumed it was perhaps due to getting a day off from being in 'Service' ie serving others, rather than being served. Also, due to those wealthy enough to be able to employ servants, might well have gone off somewhere more lavish for their Xmas festivities. Thus giving my ancestors a chance to get married & have a good old knees up - like what we did in the good old/bad old days. Whoopee!!! Kindest regards.
20 Aug 2011 - General:
The Mill, Coppermill Lane E17 W12 bus or 158, 58 bottom of market (old St James Library E17)
Saturday, 3 September - 12:00 Magic Memories. Share your memories of the Granada Cinema
Sunday, 4 September -12:00 Magic Memories
Gillian LAWRENCE ("Up Your Street")
18 Aug 2011 - Public reply to Pam Ray:
Hello Pam. I noticed from your recent post that one of your ancestors was married on Xmas Day (25th December). When I first came across an Xmas Day marriage in my family tree, I thought that this was quite romantic and unique. However, I've now got several other ancestors who were married or christened on Xmas Day and I have come across this in a lot of the family trees that I have investigated or compiled for other people..
It turns out that there is a very prosaic and practical reason reason for this date. A reason that gives us cause to pause and think about the hard life of many of our ancestors. Xmas day was one of the very few holidays that nearly all workers were allowed.(I assume that special compensation must have been given to those household servants and other private and public servants who were required to work at Xmas) Additionally, some church ministers conducted free Wedding Services on Xmas Day. Take these factors together with the fact that Xmas Day was a day of family celebration and it isn't surprising that it was such a popular date for weddings. Respects
18 Aug 2011 - Family History: Seeking a miracle... . ... to find the birthplace of my Gt. Grandpa Heinrich Christopher MÜLLER.
The Evangelical German Church of St Pauls [1880 London] Baptism Register of my Gt.Uncle, records (in German) includes the following details -
ELTERN - Heinrich Christopher MÜLLER - (parents)
Arbeiter aus - (looks like) EUPL, HANOVER - (Worker from)
He married 1874 in London, age 24 - his father's name was recorded as Peter MÜLLER, A Mariner
For some years my Gt.Grandpa worked as a Sugar Baker.
In 2010 I sought the expertise of a German Genealogist, based in Bremen, who extensively researched the archives for possible birth records in the parishes of ENDEL, ENSEN, EISSEL, ESSEL + INSEL for a Heinrich Christoph[er] MÜLLER, with a father named as Peter MÜLLER. It proved to be a very expensive exercise, without a positive result.
So, as a Worker from somewhere in Hanover, where might he have been born & in which parish? If there's a fellow ancestral researcher in Germany, who would find my quest a challenge too-good-to-ignore, please let me know. After a few year's of research in England, I have now found & purchased various certificates & documents of him, his Scottish wife & some of their children, to identify him as my Gt.Grandpa, linking me via my father's lineage. The records show that their German names were fully anglicised by the 1881 London census records.
18 Aug 2011 - General History: Hello Daniel, Strange as it may seem, one of the richest treasure troves for Walthamstow researchers is located on the other side of the world in Australia. The National Library of Australia has a wealth of information on Walthamstow including digitised Australian newspaper articles containing detailed information on events in Walthamstow. The earliest article I have found so far was dated 1888 and Entitled the Walthamstow Mystery. The link to this particular article is http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/18954836?searchTerm=walthamstow&searchLimits= which I have added as a quick example.
The entry link to the site is http://trove.nla.gov.au/ and entering the keyword Walthamstow or anywhere else in the UK into the search box brings up large volumes of information.
I believe that as so many UK people emigrated to Australia, publishing UK articles in Australia newspapers was the internet of the day keeping ex-pats informed of events in the UK.
15 Aug 2011 - Family History: BARTLETT/BANNOCKS/STEWART . My widower Gt.Grandpa James STEWART's 3rd marriage was to widow Emily Alice BARTLETT (nee BANNOCKS) on 15/9/1909 at the Parish Church of St James the Greater Walthamstow - both were living at 38 Netley Road - he was a Ship's Cook at the time.
Their witnesses were John Thomas GROVES & James' daughter Phoebe [aka Beatrice] Mary STEWART - who married in the same Church in October 1909 to Peter F MILLER.
The 1911 census records Emily Alice STEWART living at 18 Vernon Road, Walthamstow, with 2 of James' children from his previous marriage to Harriet STEWART (nee KIRBY), who died in 1903 in Walthamstow.
Emily Alice BARLETT's 1st marriage was to Reuben BARLETT on 25/12/1893 at the Parish Church of St Philips in Tower Hamlets, Middx (they were both in Service at the time) and I believe they had a daughter, possibly also named as Emily Annie(?) BARTLETT. Reuben died in Walthamstow 29/3/1909.
[Please see my earlier Family History entries under 'S' for STEWART, etc & 'M' for MILLER, etc]
I'd greatly appreciate hearing from anyone who's ancestral lineage links with these folk, please.
15 Aug 2011 - Public reply to Tony Lacey: Barbell Club:
My name is Victor Lewis, cousin to Ted Ormes, both of us members of the "Walthamstow Barbell Club" in the 1960's. The club was run by Erny, whom is the man fourth from the left in the bottom row - that is not Len Serle; Len Serle was short and had dark hair and went on to be Mr.Universe in the 60's. I do not not recognise Len as being in the picture. He went on to open a bodybuilding club in St.James street.
3rd from the left in the back row is Bert Sholl, 'Yossell' as known by our crowd and a life long friend.
The club was in Erney's back yard, Hartington Road. It had a corrigated iron roof, concrete floor - no showers, just a bowl of hot water and fairy liquid at 9pm which we all dived into and washed from. When Erny came in with that, we knew it was time to pack up. I hope you find this interesting and am happy to tell you more,
Victor LEWIS (through grandaughter's email)
Walthamstow Barbell Club
From Daniel: Click HERE to see Tony Lacey's email in Postbag 2010.
15 Aug 2011 - General:
Bill Bayliss Welcome on board The Team! Wow! It's good to know that you're now 'officially' our very own Consultant on History & Genealogy. Your wealth of knowledge & expertise will, undoubtedly, continue to help - especially those of us who live too far away to just 'drop in' at the various Record Offices. Brilliant!
11 Aug 2011 - Family History BLYTH:
Hi, I am also looking for anyone with the surname BLYTH my grandfather was Charles Blyth, born in Walthamstow somewhere down the bottom of the High St. He had sisters, but I dont know their names, but one of them was married to a NASH as we did know their son ALF, would be pleased to hear from anyone who may of known any of them. Thankyou.
Vera FORBES (Nee RICE)
5 Aug 2011 - Public Reply to Janette Jackson:
There was a Copcutts in Herbert Road opp. St. Saviour's Church which was a 'machine shop'. My Dad was the electrician who serviced the machines in the 40's - 60's. Mr. Copcutt became a friend of our family.
Jean BROWN (nee TRUMAN)
4 Aug 2011 - General:
Hi Daniel & John, I met one or both of you very briefly during the short films show at the Rose & Crown during your WM 10th anniverary special. I'm happy to read it was a success!
I've only lived in W'stow for 6 years (with no previous connections to the area), so can't really contribute much to the site. However, I'm intereted hearing and finding out about the place I now call home. I love it here - the fascinating and quirky history, interesting and friendly locals, and the sense of 'community' that still existst here.
I'm in the process with a few others of producing an exhibition called 'The People's History of the EMD/Granada Cinema', which will be displayed as part of the E17 Art Trail on 3-4th & 10-11th September. We've already filmed around a dozen interviews with people sharing their memories of the Granada cinema from the 1930s-90s. These will be shown on a 'loop' during the exhibition along with photos of people holding whiteboards with 'I love the EMD/Granada cinema.' and their own personal comments added below, plus photos, drawings etc.
If you or anyone on this site would like to contribute to this project, perhaps with a few written memories of their visits to the cinema, I'd love to be able to include them in the exhibition and I'm sure people will love reading their memories. It's been fascinating hearing from people who visited the cinema, worked in it and even performed at it. Ideally we'd need contributions by 25th August, but before 3rd Sept would be fine. If you can help at all, please email me. Best wishes
3 Aug 2011 - Public Reply to Jeanette Jackson:
There was a factory above shops where Markhouse Road junctioned with St. James street and South Grove, opposite the Brewery Tap pub and Tollemaches Brewery. However I don't know the company name. I just remember going in there once as a child about 65 years ago and I remember rows of sewing machines. Regards,
2 Aug 2011 - Family History:
Does anyone know of a clothing/machinist factory that my have been called Copcutts or something similar? My mum used to work as a machinist in Walthamstow and I am sure that was the name of the place. This would have been in the 40's & 50's. We lived in Markhouse Road and I was wondering if it was around that area? My father worked for the Micanite and I know where that was as I used to sometimes go to work with him at weekends. I would appreciate any info. My mother also worked in a shop in High Street called J. Davis, this was quite an expensive clothes shop for its time and also made curtiains. My aunt used to make the curtains there and worked with my mum. Have been researching my family history for about 9 years now and have been amazed at what I have found out so far. Many thanks.
JULY MAILS - [Top]
30 Jul 2011 - Lost & Found:
I am trying to trace a guy called DEREK ROLL. He lived in Edmonton/Tottenham area and was the drummer of THE RIOT SQUAD rock band in the 1960's. David Bowie was in that band for a while. Can anybody put me in touch please?
24 Jul 2011 - Public reply to Robbin:
Hello Robbin. Thorpe Coombe Hospital in Walthamstow was once one of the important large private houses in Walthamstow. A description of the property and its history can be found in the following publication: "More Walthamstow Houses", by the Walthamstow Antiquarian Society (Official Publication no. 20 - 1928).
It opened as a maternity hospital in 1934 and had a maximum capacity of 70 beds. Many thousands of Walthamstow children were born at the hospital. It stopped all maternity facilities in 1973 and was used as a Nurses Home. It then became a treatment centre for people with Alzheimer's disease. Presently it is used as a Psychiatric hospital.
I have sent you a private reply concerning the fascinating history of your Upson family.
The picture below shows the front of the building in Forest Road which is still very much as when it was first built:
22 Jul 2011 - Family History:
So delighted to discover this website via ask.com. My husband, Terry Upson, will celebrate his 65th this year..am attempting to understand his place of birth in 1946: Sub-District of Walthamstow, County of Essex, (Thorpe Coombe Forest hood??)..his father, William Rayleigh Henry Upson, was a Retail Grocers Manager of (W Buxton hood??) in Walthamstow..the Registrar was a Philip Folkerd. WOW, cannot wait to share this site with my husband; this is absolutely wonderful. I have photos of the two sons born to William at the shore which are priceless and hope to share with you on this site. Thank you so very much for your time.
20 Jul 2011 - Public reply to Janice Rector:
Hello Janice, The school that your father would have attended is most likely to have been Winns Junior School, Fleming Road, Walthamstow. The Infants and Junior school was founded in 1907. The school Log Books for 1907-1965 are held on behalf of the National Archives by Waltham Forest Museum at Vestry House Museum, Walthamstow:
Record Reference W58.621 - NRA catalogue reference NRA 30762 Waltham misc
If you use google maps and enter Countess Road, Walthamstow, you will get a map page that shows South and North Countess Roads split by Priory Court. Priory Court is a council estate that was built in the early 1950's and before this the whole road was called Countess Road. I believe that 24 Countess Road was part of North Countess Road. The properties in Countess Road date from the early 1920's and form part of Walthamstow Urban District Council's earliest municipal housing development in Higham Hill and if do a virtual tour of North and South Countess Road you will see many of the original cottage type properties.
Below is a picture of one of the classrooms and pupils in 1928. I have a fondness for the school because my two eldest children were pupils there and because a very good friend of mine was a Governor there for many years.
20 Jul 2011 - Public Reply to Sandro Cencetti:
Hi Sandro (aka Alessandro), First to thank you for your inspiring account of your first visit to England, as well as to Walthamstow.
I'm certainly no expert but, as a Cockney Kid, born in East London in 1938 myself, be assured that, you have no need to apologise for your written English - in fact, I think there are probably many 'bred & born &/or who have lived in the UK for many years' who would be PROUD to have achieved such a level of comprehension of the written word. [Having had the opportunity to meet & chat with you during the pre-gathering evening meal at the Rose & Crown on Wed 22/6. I know that your spoken English is very good, too! We chatted about many things, including the custard - which you tasted for the first time that evening! Alas! I was sorry that I was unable to chat with your Dear wife, Angela, and your step-son, Andrea - as well as the other members in Daniel's personal party - in their own language. Ha! Ha! We had to settle for pointing, smiling & nodding, from time-to-time, as well as the occasional translation by yourself.
By the way, I hope that the picture I took of Angela, Andrea & yourself, with your camera, was good enough to be added to your 1st Wedding Anniversary Album?
I thought the video recording you did during our Live Musical Evening on 23/6/11 was very good. A simple "Thank You" seems somewhat inadequate to Daniel, for his expert knowledge & being able to create such a wonderful Gallery on the WMs website of memorable videaos, various picture contributions (mine will eventually follow, once I've got my head around the technology to do so!). It would seem Daniel's multitude of talents lie in many quarters - as well as being a very special & kindly friend to you & yours. Yes, we all have much to thank him for - particularly those who are unable to visit Walthamstow, thus rely on the WMs website to keep in touch.
Your use of the phrase "Saints & Sinners" (which, I believe, was 'coined' by me within my personal account of the Wms Gathering) was most apt.
Indeed, Sandro, the world from my laptop in Bristol also feels brighter, friendlier & truly blessed for having met you, your lovely family & companions from Italy, along with the many kindly souls we met at The Gathering & daily contacts in & around Walthamstow, too.
Finally, coupled with the joy of meeting so many like-minded folk, I felt humbled at having the opportunity of standing on the doorstep at 62 Mansfield Rd, the 1901 home of my Gt.Grandparents Harriet & James STEWART, then at 38 Netley Rd, where my Grandpa Peter F MILLER lived in 1909, as well as to meet the current owners of 891 Lea Bridge Road, where my Grandma Beatrice MILLER [nee STEWART] lived in 1909 - which was transformed into the Lambs Cafe just after WWII & still operating there.
Pam RAY - A fellow Member of the WMs Webbies Family Tree
20 Jul 2011 - General:
Leyton and Leytonstone Historical Society in St John's Church E11. Tony Regan, 78s dj at "Walthamstow Memories", talks about HMV records. He's only 30ish and a modest man with expertise and passion about music, sheet music, and vinyls from 1920s onwards and the man can play any tune on his keyboard. Love talent.
Tony is our keyboard player at Agewell Singers, a seniors' weekly singing group in Stratford east London.
17 Jul 2011 - Public reply to Len Hall:
Well done Len for taking the trouble to look up the Clark's College website. I do bear responsibility of supplying the information on the Walthamstow branch and Cleveland House. The photograph posted there was taken by me in the early 1990s and I believe at that time the house was not being occupied.
17 Jul 2011 - Memories:
Hello,I was born in the Mountsbay Nursing Home in 1940, I wonder if anyone has any memories of this place? My mother was Lucie Cane and I think she was staying with her relatives, the Palks.
17 Jul 2011 - Gathering:
Dear Daniel, thanks for the Memories. We've been busy with our project, but belated thanks for inviting us to yours which we enjoyed immensely. We will be exhibiting and adding to our memory map at The Drive, near Prospect Hill, from 1pm or so on 3 September, but we are happy to receive emails of favourite E17 places and associated memories on this email address. All the best
David & Debbie SCOTT
17 Jul 2011 - Public Replay to Rodney Silk:
Lots more here after I googled the subject. Thanks for showing the way, Rodney, and I am not trying to 'steal your thunder'. http://www.clarkscollege.co.uk/oca_site/index.html?http://www.clarkscollege.co.uk/oca_site/Branches/Walthamstow/Details/cleveland.html
13 Jul 2011 - Topography:
Hi Daniel and John, I'm interested in the history of Goldsmith Road, E17 and was wondering how I might go about finding out when it was constructed? I've checked some old maps and it looks as though it was constructed in two parts - the first section comprising c. 11 houses detailed in the 1901 census - and the rest of the street c. 85 houses constructed later but detailed in the census in 1911. I'm interested in the history of my house, which forms part of the first set of 10/11 built. I imagine the door numbers may have changed when the rest of the street was constructed which makes researching this more difficult. Thanks
12 Jul 2011 - Gathering:
In my report of the WM gathering last month I mentioned that I took the opportunity to go along Hoe Street to the corner of Orford Road to photograph the building where I attended school between 1947 to 1953. It was Clark's College then, a fee paying school that specialised in Commercial Training but was also a Secondary Education School. Clark's College was founded in 1880 by George E. Clark initially to prepare students for Civil Service examinations. The College grew fairly rapidly and besides having many branches in London expanded into the provinces, mainly in the south of England. The Walthamstow branch opened at Cleveland House in 1913 and was closed in 1967. Further closures followed and the last remaining branch, Bromley in Kent, closed its doors in the late 1980s. A history of Clark's College can be found on their website www.clarkscollege.co.uk where you will also find further information on the Walthamstow branch and Cleveland House. The house dates back to the late 17th. century and has some mythical connection with Barbara Villiers, Duchess of Cleveland, who was a mistress of King Charles II. My era do have reunions so if any of you attended the college during the late forties and early fifties then please get in touch. The photograph I took is attached and can be compared with the one taken sixty one years earlier in 1950. The wires you see across the top were for the trolleybuses.
12 Jul 2011 - General:
Regarding the photo gallery, I was wondering if the photos could be numbered, so if someone wants to make reference to a photo they can very easily. When I was looking through all the school photos there was one photo where I thought it may be my dad (as a young boy), but I'm not sure. I don't know the school he went to, it would have been a public school in the late 1920's. The family lived at 24 Countess Rd in Walthamstow and my dad was born in 1924 and immigrated in 1931 to Canada, so in 1931 he would have been 7 years old. Does anyone have access to any school year books from that time period? My dad's name was Raymond Roberts. Thank you very much
10 Jul 2011 - General:
Hi John and Daniel. Congrats on a superb website, I really enjoy reading the Postbag section and the gallery is great. I was just wondering, seeing as Walthamstow is extremely old and dates back many hundreds of years with a very varied history, if anyone has got any ghost stories they would like to share? My family has lived in the area since the late Victorian era. My great aunts and grandparents told me of quite a few strange stories relating to the area. It's something that most would scoff at, but seeing as they were all very sane, teatotal people with a strong religious upbringing it kind of adds credibility to the subject. Many thanks for a great site. Kind Regards
09 Jul 2011 - Gathering:
Hello, I apologize for my very basic English, but I must write something about my experience. My name is Alessandro and I am one of the Daniel's Italian friends who, with my wife Angela and our son Andrea, were in Walthamstow during the gathering of the 10th anniversary of Walthamstow Memories.
The "Quinn Group" was completed by Patrizia (Daniel's wife), and her sister Carla with her son, Silvio. We had never been in England before, so we enthusiastically accepted when Daniel invited us to spend with him a whole week there. I don't want to speak about the sightseeing in London (and of the other sites we have visited): it's enough to say that we hope we'll return there again as soon as possible. I would like to say, however, a few words about Walthamstow and the people we met there.
About Walthamstow. I was really surprised! It's a really pretty borough! I think that, probably, in daily life there are the same problems that every community has, but the quality of life seems good. I live in a town of 150.000 people (10 miles away from Florence) with almost 35/40.000 immigrants (approx. 60% of them... illegal!), mainly Chinese, with a lot of problems due to racial integration and, consequently, of law compliance. We have a very large "Chinatown", where they live and work in very degraded conditions and - believe me - I didn't see anything similar in Walthamstow.
As written on the bags that WM offered to us, "I love Walthamstow", really!
People we met.
I think we have been very lucky, because we met only kind people in the streets, and I would like to mention two persons in particular. On Friday evening we were returning to the hotel from Walthamstow Central station and, as only my Oyster card was working properly, I tried to pay three tickets with it and this is impossible: the driver understood that we were foreigners, and he accepted all three of us with only one ticket, saying "You're welcome"! On Saturday evening my son lost his wallet (with 100 pounds and all the identity documents in it) in a taxi. We called the hiring company and, an hour later, the driver left the wallet at the hotel's reception, with nothing missing from it!.
As someone has written on the WM site: "There are saints & sinners everywhere, but I was blessed with the joy of meeting only the saints".
The Walthamstow Memories members: I remember particularly John Knowles (who showed me what "playing guitar" really means), Dave (Daniel's right hand on site), Tony (really great music expert and very good piano player), Rhubarb the clown, the Rose and Crown Pub owners (we ate and drank really very well in a very homely atmosphere) and Pam Ray, Pamèla in Italian (Pam: thanks for the custard's recipe!).
On Wednesday evening my wife & I received a wonderful bouquet of flowers, to celebrate our first wedding anniversary. When we departed from Walthamstow, we left the flowers on Daniel's grandparents grave in Walthamstow's cemetery, but we cherish the greeting card as a treasured memory. Thanks!
Last, but not the least, my friend Daniel and his wonderful wife Patrizia: I can only say thanks, thanks a lot for everything. What else? Only that the world looks better, much more better, when I think that you exist! Regards
08 Jul 2011 - General:
Just to say how fascinating I found your memories of Dorothy Cornu and particularly the way she worked with us all in the annual plays -- in Romeo and Juliet (1968) I played Mercutio and Janice Taylor was Juliet -- Dorothy's patience, support and vision were quite outstanding. Mr Williamson by the way was one of the first people in the country to have an alarmed timer on his wrist watch to reind him to take pills for his heart condition. Any memories of Miss Durrant? of Mr Stockdale's snooker or Mr Minchin's Metal Work? Good wishes
08 Jul 2011 - General:
Hi! My name is Steve Hale. I recently found your fabulous site and was hoping I could contribute a little. My family moved to Walthamstow from Kentish Town in 1966, when my dad took over a small coach company in Hamilton Rd, Higham Hill. We lived there until my dad died in 1979, after which I drifted a bit before finally settling with my wife in the Chigwell/Barkingside area. I attended Higham Hill Junior School and later McEntee Senior High, before joining the Royal Navy in 1975.
I will trawl through the site and see what I can catch!
Thanks for doing a great job. Regards
06 Jul 2011 - General:
Can anyone help me with information on the Granada Cinema in Walthamstow during the 1950's ? Who was the manager what celebrities visited the cinema etc?
From Daniel: Useful info on the Granada EMD Cinema is available on McGuffins site.
04 Jul 2011 - Gathering:
Hello Daniel, I did enjoy reading the various contributions on the successful Walthamstow gathering. Unfortunately I could not be there due to a series of commitments that coincided with the gathering. The video of the meeting with the mayor in the council chamber brought back many memories for me. I used to be a councillor on Waltham Forest Council and the council chamber is where I have experienced many and sometimes fiery debates. I used to be the Chair of both the Planning Committee and also the Public Protection Committee. The latter was an umbrella committee for a wide range of public protection issues including Road Safety, Trading and Weights and Measures. The trading aspect of the committee meant I had to chair disciplinary hearings when occasionally a few market traders transgressed street or market trading rules. It also meant I also chaired meetings between the council and representatives of the market traders to plan future developments of the market.
The photograph outside what is now The Limes Centre in Somers Road also brought back memories. One because I used to live in Somers Road and the other was when The Limes was known as the William Morris Hall, a place where I went to many meetings.
My thanks to everyone who has made contributions about the gathering as this helps share the event for those that could not be there. Regards
04 Jul 2011 - Gathering:
May I add my admiration for your efforts in arranging the gathering to celebrate the 10th. Anniversary of the Walthamstow Memories website. The three days I attended were full of interest and the visit to the Town Hall, and meeting the Mayor of Waltham Forest, and the presentation by the Walthamstow Cine & Video Club were outstanding. As a keen amateur photographer I was most intrigued by the film on the Ensign Camera Works in Fulbourne Road. I do in fact own an Ensign camera which is in my collection of old cameras. See attached photos. The visit to the Sir George Monoux School and the tour of the High Street had vivid memories for me. The Sir George Monoux Grammar School was well known for its excellence in my day but unfortunately I had not the brilliance of mind to attend it. My old next door neighbour did, and I am now in the process of emailing him with my experience of the tour complete with photographs. I used to pass it on my way to the fee paying school I attended at Clark's College, Cleveland House, Hoe Street, on the corner of Orford Road. I would also have passed the Rose & Crown pub on this journey but I have never entered the establishment until attending your gathering. My generation were not schoolboy pub crawlers. Jo Brind did a good job with his video record but I must reflect whether I did the Town Hall visit much justice. It's rather unnerving to see yourself on You/Tube as age is catching up on me. Your organisation covered all aspects keeping us well fed, excellent spread by the Rose & Crown, and well entertained.
Arriving on the first day I parked my car in the Walthamstow Central Station car park and then walked along Hoe Street to the Rose & Crown pub. This was a journey I had not taken for about 55 years and I took in my memories as I made my way down to the venue. The first thing I noticed was that the ticket office at the station was as I remember it. I would use it to take my first journeys into Liverpool Street as I began my working life after leaving school in 1953. It was Hoe Street station then and the bridge was just a single carriageway as the rest of Hoe Street. I passed the top of the High Street where on one corner was a large open area. This area was virtually destroyed by a V1 Flying Bomb in August 1944 which had glanced off of the Hitchman's Dairies distributing centre and landed among shoppers on the opposite side of the road. The casualty list was heavy and the bombed out site remained for many years after the war before being rebuilt. Most notable was the shell of the Burton's Tailors shop on the corner of the High Street. There was some reconstruction later but this has now been removed leaving the open space. Further along Hoe Street is the Granada cinema looking a very sorry state under scaffolding and sheeting. I used to go there for the films and the Saturday morning pictures for children. Opposite the cinema I was amazed to see the Henry Taylor shop still selling school uniforms as it did during my school days. Whilst it was still light on Thursday evening I popped out and made it up to Orford Road where Cleveland House is on the corner. I attended school there from 1947 to 1953 when it was owned by Clark's College. The college had been there since 1913 but closed in 1967. Cleveland House was at one time used by the local council as the health department. It was then vacant for some time but has recently been redeveloped into maisonettes. The photographs I took I have sent to my old school colleagues who were rather intrigued to see them.
I have been browsing through some old posts in the postbag and have noticed the item posted by Dave Hughes in August 2010, on the subject of the open air school in Hale End Road were he attended breathing lessons. My sister, who has suffered asthma since the age of 5 years, also attended this school though many years before Dave. In 2009 The Highams Park Society held an exhibition on lost properties in the area. This was about houses and buildings that once occupied the area but no longer exist. One of the lost properties was Wingfield House in Hale End Road which housed the open air school. The school closed in 1969 and the building later demolished. The attached photographs were from the exhibition and show the building before and during the demolition process. Such a shame to see such a fine house being razed to the ground. The dates that Dave gave should mean that this was the house where he went for his breathing lessons.
3 Jul 2011 - 2011
Gathering - Message from Daniel:
Our 10th Anniversary Meeting was a great success!
Thanks to all who have made the effort to be present with us and a great big thanks to those who helped making it possible. In particular I would like to thank Dave Hughes (my local left & right hand). In spite of a computer breakdown, he managed to give uninterrupted assistance in all aspects of the organization.
Pam Ray travelled all the way from Bristol to attend at our Gathering. She has sent in her own account of the meeting. You may read it [here]. Many thanks, Pam! It has been a pleasure to have you with us.
My personal notes are [here]
Visit the WM Gathering page!
03 Jul 2011 - General:
Mapping The Change comes to Waltham Forest. A class of 8 Waltham Forest residents will be selected for a stringent journalism course beginning 19th September 2011. You need no formal qualifications for the free 7 week course but you do need to work in a committed professional way independently and in a group with tight deadlines. You'll research in the community and record how the residents are engaging in the lead up to The Games. The benefits to you are enormous with professionals leading you and with access to archive material at Vestry House and Hackney Museum. Apply by 25th July to Joy Francis on 02072886255 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
(From "Up Your Street5", an information-sharing service for seniors listing free events and activities in the 5 London 2012 boroughs).
03 Jul 2011 - General:
Hi Kim, I was at RWS 1956 - 1964, do not remember you. If you remember me I hope it is in a good light . I was not all that nice realy - I really thought I was popular - Wrong! Do you go on the RWS site? http://royalwanstead.com/ Regards,
Kelvin (Taffy) EVANS
JUNE MAILS - [Top]
26 Jun 2011 - Family History:
I was born in 1946 to Tom and Marion Stow, we lived in Gosport Road Walthamstow. A lot of people will remember me as I was born with a type of dwarfism. I had two brothers who were 9 and 12 years older than me (Brian & Philip). In 1953 I started going to Brownies, which I think was in Markhouse Road School (not 100% sure of that one). My photo was in the Guardian newspaper as being "The smallest brownie in Walthamstow": I would really love to get hold of that cutting, as I am now trying to write my life story, and it would be great to insert that picture. I understand I could probably get a copy from the Guardian Offices, but as I live out in Essex, near Chelmsford, and my mobility is not so good, I am unable to do that. I also took part in the street party in 1952 and sang "how much is that doggie in the window". I have now been married 41 years and have two sons. Regards,
Valerie SIMS (nee STOW)
26 Jun 2011 - Gathering:
Many thanks for the wonderful experiences and company.
Walthamstow Memories on www.upyourstreet.wordpress.com
26 Jun 2011 - Gathering:
At the Gathering tonight, Rod Silk and I were talking between Rhubarb The Clown and Cine film exposes about the Coop building in Hoe Street next to Peejay's and cosidering the relief high on the facade of the same Co-op building . We were correct in that the honey pot and bees symbolised the workers buzzing together co-operatively. Ode to June 23rd"Walthamstow Memories Gathering 2011You are my Glastonbury, my Greenwich Festival,My walks in the dark and the parksMy Sunday roasts, my buffet hostsWhose lives recorded in black and whiteMake poetry and traveloguesOn miked up croonings, guitared stars Folksy tunes and remembered timesOf "Fings aint what they used ter be."
16 Jun 2011 - Public Reply to Rodney Silk:
Good morning. I am interested in the photograph of the former shops in Cavendish Road as I grew up in that street and knew the Meopham shop very well. Looking at the photograph provided by Mr Silk - the store with the brown shutters was actually next door to Mr Meopham's shop. For the whole of my childhood that shop was closed. However - my parents always told me it had been a fish and chip shop.
Meophams occupied the shop to the left as you look at the photograph. They have made a good job of converting it to a house as it blends in well and it is hard to tell it was ever a shop. The building on the far right of the photograph was also a former shop but has also been converted. This is the shop featured in subsequent posts - known as Sealeys. When I was a child this shop was a kind of grocers and green grocers but it was sometimes unoccupied.
I also remember another unoccupied shop on the other corner of Cavendish Road and Haldan Road. My parents always referred to it as 'Bannisters'. It was converted to a house even before i left the street.
I lived in Cavendish Road from 1957 - 1969 (no 56) and attended Selwyn School. My mother grew up in the same house - having moved there with her mother and siblings in 1925 after the death of their father. In the 1960s - it was a real little community with everything you needed on your doorstep. There were hardly any cars in the street and even as six or seven year olds - we were permitted to run errands for our neighbours - often popping up to the the Co-op or even collecting a prescription from the chemist on the other side of Winchester Road.
I now live 100 miles away but sometimes travel back to see family in Chingford. The last time I walked down Cavendish Road was in 2006 and I was amazed to see that my old house still had the same front door and door surround! I am sure it is the original door and surround from when the house was first built. Best wishes
04 Jun 2011 - Family History:
I lived in Maynard Rd no 37 in the early 1950,s next door to my aunt and uncle Bill & Vi Lowe and their daughter Pat. I went to Maynard Rd infants and juniors, cannot remember any names but there were alot of people I grew up with roaming all over the forest and boating on the Hollow Ponds. I joined the cubs and went to the hut near the church, remember the little shop by the lane up to the schools. If any one remembers me, please get in touch, I am trying to find out what has happenned to my cousin Betty Drake nee Gallant who lived in Wood St can't get any info about her hope someone can help.
04 Jun 2011 - History:
Dear Daniel and John, As an amateur family historian I find your web site full of fascinating details.
For the record, I am a 30s/40s vintage former Walthamstow resident who attended George Gascoigne School and, when it was merged with William Morris in 1940, was evacuated to Blaenavon in South Wales. I recently collected some reminiscences of evacuation from people who were with me at the time, a task which was initiated by a chance meeting with some members of the Blaenavon Local History Enthusiasts Group. My collection of reminiscences was part of a Blaenavon Local history Project to produce a chronology of the town covering 1901 to 1951 and is about to be published.
Separately, I gave copies of the wartime recollections to Vestry House Museum, the Imperial War Museum and also Gwent County Archives. The interest generated has prompted me to try to collect some further reminiscences as a Part II and at the same time make it a tribute to the dedicated teaching staff that looked after 130 teenagers, boys and girls, away from home for up to three years. To that end I would be grateful for the help of your website to
(a) identify any former Blaenavon evacuees who may be willing to set out some reminiscences for me, and
(b) identify former pupils of the seven members of staff evacuated with us who were: Miss B E Cockrell, Head Teacher; Miss P S Clayton, Miss M E Bubbers; Miss Lippiatt (initials unknown); Mr G Grantham; Mr H J Vaissiere; and Mr J Evans willing to send me information about them, eg anecdotes, experiences, factual background, subjects taught, photos, retirement dates, etc. Information about the staff could be from the post war period and equally, if anyone is old enough, from before WW2.
If you are able to help I would like guidance on how best to set out my quest for your web site. With best wishes
02 Jun 2011 - Musical Bands:
Just seen your blog re Riot Squad. I remember the other Riot Squad that David Bowie sang with. They even gave me a copy of their record at the time. "Cry Cry Cry" on one side, "How Is It Done" on the other. I met them at a venue in Dagenham - must have been 1965/66. When David became famous I was uncertain, but it was the eyes that gave it away lol. I believe the drummer at that time was Del Roll?
01 Jun 2011 - General:
Does anybody remember the WOOD STREET WALK.. I entered it one year in the late 60s, and it was always won by the same person. I think he was a postman working in London. He was very good, it was an 8 mile race walk, and I would be halfway to the halfway mark, and he would be seen racing for the finish. Any Memories anybody ??? Thanks,
MAY MAILS - [Top]
21 May 2011 - Public Reply to Jim SINFIELD:
Hello Jim, I suspect that the reason that you haven't been able to find anything on the Fitzwygram family of Walthamstow is because it is all listed under the name of Wigram.
The Wigram family were important notables in Walthamstow history and start with the 1st Baronet - Robert Wigram (1744-1830) - who was a wealthy merchant shipbuilder and Tory MP. He was a founder and Chairman of the East India Company. He was married twice and had 29 children. His son James was the Vice Chancellor of England and Joseph was Bishop of Rochester. His family seat was at Walthamstow House, Shernhall Street and members of the family are associated with many of the important old houses of Walthamstow including Thorpe Combe and Brookscroft Houses.(Walthamstow House still exists and was previously the address of Cardinal Wiseman and became the St Mary Roman Catholic Convent and Orphanage and Children's Home. It is now part of the 'Holy Family' group of Roman Catholic schools in Shernhall Street) Below is a picture of Walthamstow House in Shernhall Street that I took in 2008:
Your ancestor worked for one of his descendants, the 4th Baron Fitzwygram, who was Lieutenant General Frederick Wellington John Fitzwygram (1823-1904) He was the third son of Sir Robert Fitzwygram, 2nd Baronet and his wife Selina Hayes. He became a cavalry officer and served with the 6th (Inniskilling) Dragoons in the Crimean War. In 1873 he inherited the Wigram baronetcy on the death of his elder brother Robert. He purchased Leigh Park estate, at Havant, in 1874 and developed the grounds and garden which were frequently thrown open to the public. He was a member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, and as President from 1875 to 1877 he unified the veterinary profession. He was active in public life and in 1876 he was mayor of Portsmouth. From 1879 to 1884 he was Inspector-General of Cavalry at Aldershot.
Frederick Fitzwilliam was elected as Member of Parliament for Hampshire South in a by election in 1884, and when the constituency was restructured, he became MP for Fareham in 1885. He held the seat until 1900, memorial in Havant church is the west window illustrating St. Gabriel and St. Michael. He was an honorary member of the Manchester Unity of Independent Order of Oddfellows, Royal Naval Lodge, England.
I include an attachment on the family and their houses that, inter alia, gives web site references so that you can see the more information. I would be obliged if you would advise me of your information about Frederick Fitzwygram's property in Walthamstow where your ancestor was employed as, at the date that you, give his principal house was on the Leigh Estate in Havant where he had many servants and coachmen etc.
21 May 2011 - Public reply to Jim SINFIELD:
Jim, unfortunately you did not give your grandfathers surname and I am uncertain if is the same as yours or if he is from your maternal line. I have however found a number of references to Sir Frederick Wellington John Fitzwygram, 4th Baronet (1823-1904) including Debretts. It would appear the title of Baronetcy was first grant to the family in 1803 and they lived in Walthamstow House. The family name was originally Wigram and later generations reverted to this spelling.
Various censi show the family were resident in both Uplyme, Devon and Eccleston Square, London from about 1880 onwards.
A more informative link is http://www.facebook.com/pages/Wigram-Baronets/135400756493230
18 May 2011 - Family History:
Dear Daniel, I am trying to find out information on Sir Frederick Fitz Wygram, but can find no reference to him or his estate in Walthamstow. My grandfather worked as second coachman to Sir Frederick at Walthamstow around 1895, not quite sure of actual date. Can you supply any references or information. Regards
17 May 2011 - Public Reply to Anne DAY:
Hello Anne, The Peter May Sports Ground is part of a small complex of sports grounds (Parmiters, Wadham Lodge etc) in the locality and to the best of my recollection the Peter May Sports Ground previously was the sports ground for a large company.
Wadham Road was changed dramatically when it became incorporated into the original development of the North Circular part of the outer London ring road. It was again changed in the 1990's by extensive engineering works that created the underpass to the Crooked Billet roundabout (Which is when the pub vanished) and the new Waterworks roundabout.
Before it became a sports ground it was part of Wadham Lodge Farm that was owned by John Hitchman. His name will be well known to most older readers because of Hitchman's Dairies that were situated in Walthamstow and Chingford. His company amalgamated with another Walthamstow based Dairy company called Davis & Williams and in 1938 built a super milk processing plant in Walthamstow Avenue (Now part of the North Circular Road) on the other side of the Crooked Billet. This building has undergone a number of transitions being part of Unigate and later a St Ivel factory. Today it is a smart hotel and part of the Holiday Inn group.
Above; Hitchman's Dairy now a Holiday Inn hotel
Above: the Crooked Billet Public House
16 May 2011 - Public Reply to Anne Day:
Hullo Anne, I have just read your email on the Wlathamstow Memories website. For some reason i am unable to reply to you from there so I have had to send you a new email.
I lived in Kitchener Road Walthamstow from 1942 to 1965 so I knew Wadham Road very well. As I have not been back for many years I am not sure where the Peter May Sports Centre is. If you could give me some more detailed location I may be able to help
Can you email me back on email@example.com please.
15 May 2011 - Family History:
Hello, I'm researching the Family history of the Smiths/Dadd/Morris/Mahoney tribe. If any member has any of these in their history, we may be able to assist each other. Regards,
14 May 2011 - Public Reply to Derek POLLINGTON:
Hello Derek, Your mention of Mr Tollett as Headmaster of Mission Grove School has brought back memories, as I knew him as my class teacher at Coppermill Junior School way back in 1936 and 1937. I still have a couple of old school reports, one signed W. Tollett and the other W. A. H. Tollett. I regret to say that one of them reveals that I got only 26 out of 100 for Arithmetic, against which Mr Tollett has written "Weak. Very disappointing." But I do remember him as a very good teacher. Luckily, I was better at English than at sums so I became a journalist!
Also I remember Mr Les Birmingham, mentioned by Alan Stephenson on March 30 as Headmaster of Maynard Road School in the 1950s - but I knew him as the Science teacher at Winns Avenue Senior Boys' School in 1938 and 1939. I was 13 when WW2 broke out and the school was evacuated to St Albans. Regards,
11 May 2011 - GENERAL:
Hello, I currently work at the Peter May sports centre in Wadham Road, Walthamstow. Do you know what used to be on this site in years gone by? The reason for asking is that there have been some spooky goings on recently and as this is quite a new building it must relate to some previous time. Hope you can enlighten me. Regards,
11 May 2011 - Public Reply to Bill BAYLISS:
Hi, My late husband was a 'Jig and Tool' draughtsman at Brimtoys in Somers Road. Geoffrey J. Young, his family lived in Acacia Road. My Mum painted toys for Britains. My most vivid memory is when she painted the scottish soldiers in their kilts, she had to do different coloured lines on the green kilt. We had to be careful not to jog the table when she was working. My mother's name was Edie Taylor and my father was Ernest or George Taylor, we lived in Pretoria Ave. The Taylor family lived in Tenby Road. I would love to hear from anyone who knows them. I live in Australia now.
I love reading all the postbags and the news of Walthamstow.
Sally YOUNG (nee TAYLOR)
10 May 2011 - Memories:
Hi I was born in Colebrook Rd in 1946 and lived there until about 1970. I remember the Carlton cinema on the corner and the Palace theatre opposite in the High street. I attended Mission Grove Infants and Junior schools and then Sir George Monoux. I used to help Dave Allen (the Sasperilla man) put out his stool outside the Carlton on Saturdays. His stool was stored in the yard behind Pops Corner Shop on the corner of Field Road and Colebrook Road. My Father worked in the garage at the end of Field Road (Carlton Garage). One day while going to school at Mission Grove a horse bolted down Palmerston Road and went through the window of the record shop in the High Street. My favourite teacher there was Mrs Witherwick and the Headmasters name was Mr Tollet. The school had a Mulberry tree in the playground and the boys and girls toilets were at the far corners of the playground. There was a wood yard next to the playground which caught fire one day and all the children were kept in at playtime, because the fire engines were in the playground. My Aunt and Uncle lived in Longfellow Road in a prefab and that was where we had a street party for the Coronation.
09 May 2011 - Public Reply to Wendy:
Hi Wendy I am still having difficulty in contacting you on your E-mail address (is it me?) so having to go through this site, I still have a great affinity for Walthamstow although I not lived there for so long. All my children would be regarded as carrot crunchers if it were not for the fact somebody invented Milton Keynes, although I personally tell people I am from Bletchley home of the CODEBREAKERS see WW2. Your Mail address still shows as firstname.lastname@example.org, but as I said earlier my mails keeping bouncing back as unsent.. Regards .
Richard (Dick) GOSS
08 May 2011 - Public Reply to Bill BAYLISS:
Hello Bill, Many thanks for your info. I am sure the Phyllis Gunn that you have found must be my old music teacher. From what you say about her date of birth, she would have been in her forties when I knew her, in the mid-late 1930s, which seems just right. But the house in Campbell Road is not as I remember it. She was just living with her Mum , so maybe they "downsized" to a Victorian cottage when her Dad died (I never knew him). She had a big poster in her window reading something like: "Phyllis Gunn, LRAM, Teacher of pianoforte, violin, mandolin, singing and theory." Once disadvantage she had as a music teacher was that she was slightly deaf (but then she had that in common with Beethoven!) Very often, after one of my music lessons she would bring out some home-made coconut ice, which she sold for tuppence (2d) a bagful to eke out a skinny living for herself and her nonagenarian Mum. I do have fond memories of her, even though I did not practice enough to make much progress as a musician. Best wishes
07 May 2011 - Public Reply to John BUCK:
Hello John, I don't know if it is the same person but in 1911 there was a 16 year old Phyllis Gunn (Born in Ewell, Surrey and who appears not to have married) living with her parents at 43, Cambell Road, Walthamstow. (The property, courtesy of Google Maps, is in the picture below) Her death, at the age of 80 years, was registered at Waltham Forest in 1974.
05 May 2011 - Public Reply to Ken Bird:
Hello Ken and Daniel, Just discovered this fantastic site through a mention of it in the Spring issue of the journal of the East of London Family History Society. I thought Ken might like to know that I have some very faded memories of his Dad, "Dickie" Bird, in the early 1930s. I was a choir boy at St Paul's Church, Courteney Road (bomb- damaged during WW2 and later demolished), and Dickie ran a youth group there. I seem to dimly remember that he and a new Vicar, The Revd A H Flower, did not see eye to eye (no idea what it was all about) and Dickie left and set up a group in another church (possibly St Oswald's). But although I was very young, Dickie's character and personality certainly must have made an impression on me as his name has stayed with me all my life and I'm now 85! On a completely different subject, does anyone remember a music teacher, Miss Phyllis Gunn? I had piano and violin lessons with her but can't now remember exactly where she lived. It was a little Victorian terraced house and might have been in Buxton Road. Hope to let you have some more memories soon. Best regards to all from
05 May 2011 - War at Walthamstow:
Dear Daniel, I discovered your site by chance while surfing the 'net. Very interesting stuff.
I am wondering if any contributors have any memories or photographs of the V1 flying bomb incident in Hoe Street during 1944. Ideally, I am looking for eye-witnesses who would be prepared to relate their memories on camera, as I hope to make a short documentary on the subject. There appear to be no surviving official photographs, so if anyone has any snapshots from the time these would be very welcome. Best Regards,
01 May 2011 - Family History:
Amazing site. My mother Sheila Cynthia Munn was born at 79 Byron Road, Walthamstow. Her mother Edna May Munn was born at 76 Binstead Road Walthamstow. I am trying to trace any body who can help with information about my Grandfather: on my mothers birth certificate he is named as Geoffrey Wallington (otherwise MAY), and his address is 4 Roma Road, Walthamstow, and is a fishmonger. My Grandmother was only 15 when she had my mother and when she married her husband adopted my Mum changing her name to Flack. My Mum remembered going to visit who she thinks were her Grandparents on her fathers side and them spoiling her rotten. My Mum's half sister also remembers going with her to visit and not having a fuss made over her. We also know her fathers family wanted to adopt her. If anybody can help it would be great.
APRIL MAILS - [Top]
29 Apr 2011:
Dear Daniel & John, while doing some family history, I found your site while trying to find out about a bomb hitting a tram/bus, during the 2nd world war, in which my paternal grandmothers brother - the conductor - died. His name was Searle, Frank I think, and the Searle family (Edward James being the father) lived in Sofia road/Anderson road and/or Middleton street. No one to ask: granny & father have both passed over now & I'm not sure if the bus driver wasn't John James Good, a married man that my granny ran away with (much horror at the time, I imagine!), grannies husband had died in 1939, but mr Good was very much married with 3 children at the time. Is there any way you or your readers can help me with this enquiry? Your help would be much appreciated. Thank you
Sara VALLARD (nee SHEAD)
25 Apr 2011 - (Public Reply) Lost & Found:
Hi Richard, here I am!
Sorry about the temporary loss of contact - we changed internet providers and have had a series of email problems since then - hopefully now all sorted.
I love this site, which I found by accident, and it was a real stroke of luck looking on it today and spotting your query. Yes, our Mums were great friends, is there anyone else out there who remembers her or my Dad, Ethel (Moore) and Bill Gates? We lived at 59 Hazelwood Rd. until about 1967.
Love to hear from anyone else.
22 Apr 2011:
I lived at 4 Ickworth Park Road until 1946, when we moved to Dorset. I started school at Blackhorse Road, was evacuated in late 1939 to St Just in Cornwall - almost Lands End - with brother Bob. Loved every minute. Came back to London in time for Doodlebugs, so was sent off to Cheshire and hated every minute. I can recall a few names: Pat Davis, David Rose both lived in same road. Dad Albert born 1900 was a cabinet maker secondfed to build the Mosquito, and Mum worked in Micanite factory in Blackhorse Rd.I went to Scruffy McGuffie, took my 11 plus at Town Hall. Since most of my immediate family no lnger in E17, I am out of touch. Would love to hear from any who remember me.
Alec John SMITH
22 Apr 2011 - Public Reply to Alan Stephenson:
Dear Alan, Just seeing your article about "The League of Three" brought back a few memories for me. Although not a member of the Youth Club, I got to know most of the clubs and some of their leaders owing to my father, 'Dickie' Bird, being the co-ordinator for the Walthamstow Youth Clubs' Football league. The whole family (all 3 of us!) got involved, my mother doing the typing, and me turning the handle of the Gestetner duplicating machine and getting covered in ink! Good fun for some years. We were then living in Howard Road up from the 'Bell' corner, and I went to Chapel End school, the McEntee Tech. Is the gentleman sitting on the left of your picture (the man with the beard) one Mr. Grainger?? Any other Youth Club memories out there? Best regards to all Walthamstowers, wherever they may be (I'm in Portugal). .
19 Apr 2011 - Lost & Found:
Early this year I had an email from a Wendy Spencer and have since tried to contact her using the email address she gave, but this was to no avail, so I am hoping she sees this message as our parents were very close friend when we were small she stated all my brothers and sisters names ,but as I said I have had no luck using the email address she contacted me on, Her name when i knew her was Wendy Gates and we lived in Hazelwood road, so I am hoping she sees this if you could put this in the postbag I would be very grateful thank you .
Richard (Dick) GOSS
19 Apr 2011 - Public Reply to Rosie HALLAM:
Hello Rosie, In response to your request concerning street parties for the forthcoming Royal wedding. I would advise you that Waltham Forest Council have just approved 28 street party applications for April 29th. One of these is for Beech Hall Crescent in Highams Park who held previous street parties for the Silver Jubilee and Princess Diana's wedding.
18 Apr 2011 - Public Reply to Jean ROBINSON:
Hello Jean, Was Bangham's in the old film studio in Wood Street?, I think that the little celluloid film fish that curled up in the heat of your hand was accompanied by a little slip of paper that said something like "Test your passion. If you have passionate nature the fish will curl in your hand". Of course, unless you were dead, the fish curled up in everybody's hand... As you say, you had to make a lot of them to earn any money. They were always in dozens of boxes and you were paid by the gross (That's 12 dozen for those of you who are of the decimal age)
My daughter in law still makes crackers, that she makes from kits, for our Xmas dinner table every year. My wife has all the family around for Xmas dinner. (The numbers increase every year and, although we have a big house, we're rapidly running out of space) However, these are very 'posh' crackers because she buys a small personal gift for everybody who comes to dinner and inserts them into the crackers.
18 Apr 2011 - Public reply to Bill BAYLISS:
Hi Bill. You mentioned Bangham's in Wood Street making Christmas crackers. Both my mother and aunt who lived next door to us in Waverley Road did this as outdoor work. I was just a youngster of maybe 9 or 10 and can remember well the boxes of cracker papers, mottos and little gifts stacked in the house. Mum was very adept at making the cracker, but Auntie Grace was a little slower. They did their quota between them and in the height of the crackers season I can remember helping them. The gifts were of a very poor quality. The plastic soldiers would be scorned by today's children. I think the thing that I always think of with fondness was the fish made of some sort of film that you put in the palm of your hand and it turned up it's ends. I can't remember it's purpose, maybe you can.
To make a cracker you had a metal tube around which the crepe paper and cardboard cracker outside was wrapped and glued. The motto and snap was laid inside before this was done. Once glued a small rubber band was slipped on the tube to where the crepe paper was. The tube was then pulled out as far as the band and the cracker twisted. In the open tube end the present an paper hat were inserted. Another band was put on the other crepe paper band and the tube twisted and removed. I remember that Auntie Grace often felt sorry about the poor contents so would put in 2 or 3 of the little gifts. Once 12 crackers were made they were put into the carton and stitched in place and a little cut out of Father Christmas or holly stuck on the middle of the cracker, then a lid put on the box.You had to really do many dozens of boxes to earn anything worthwhile. Mum and Auntie Grace did this for several years.
Outdoor work was the one way that mother's could earn a few shillings to supplement the income and still look after the children. In today's society most mums have to go out to work and pay for the children to be looked after.
Thanks for stirring up the memories. Kind regards
17 Apr 2011 - Re: Cozy Powell:
I went to Willowfield School in the 70s. My Dad was a local bus driver and told me back then that Cozy Powell lived in the cottages in Blackhorse Lane at the end of Tavistock Avenue. I believe its the row starting at nr 63 but I"m not sure exactly which one Kind regards
17 Apr 2011 - Public Reply to Jackie BRECH (2009):
I've only just very belatedly seen your old post on the Walthamstow Memories site. Unfortunately, am only too sadly aware of British Home Children and the story is a dark stain on Britain"s history. It is reckoned that up to a third of Canadian citizens are descendants of the children.
I regret to advise you that I have identified an Institution in Walthamstow and another, hitherto lost institution, in nearby Chingford that both sent children to Canada and to Australia. These were: St John's Roman Catholic Industrial School in Walthamstow and Miss Steer's Cottage Homes For Little Girls in Chingford.
The St John's Industrial school was in Shernhall Street, Walthamstow and housed a large number of boys between the ages of 5-15 years. There is a Catholic Secondary school still on the site that incorporates part of the original St John's buildings. This Institution was involved in a major scandal in 1893 when a Roman Catholic priest exposed the brutality and ill treatment of the boys by those who were supposed to care for them and educate them. Paradoxically, this priest was heavily involved with taking children from Roman Catholic institutions to Canada.
Miss Steer's Cottage Homes for Little Girls was in Ainslie Wood Gardens, Chingford. The latter, were a number of houses under the control of Matrons that housed large numbers girls between the ages of 5-15 years. Miss Steer was a Victorian religious 'do-gooder' and was a friend of several others of the same ilk who were also involved with sending children to Canada etc. What is specially horrific is that there is another local historian in Chingford, who knew of Miss Steer's Cottage Homes, but deliberately blanked off the enquirIes of relatives of British Home Children about the homes!
I am an ex Foster Carer for Waltham Forest and a local historian with a particular interest in the history of child care in the UK. Because of my knowledge of local history, my childcare knowledge and an interest in genealogy I have been able to help a number of relatives of British Home Children to find their ancestors and to learn of the social conditions that caused the 'deportations'.
17 Apr 2011 - Pictures:
Daniel, I attach two of my favourite images of the area around the Whipps X area for your picture gallery. Although strictly speaking the area is in Leytonstone, many of your readers will have spent many happy hours messing about at the Hollow Ponds. At the same time many of your readers will ahev spent unhappy hours at Whipps X Hospital.
The Hollow Ponds at Whipps X are not a natural phenomena but were created over a period of time by the removal of gravel etc from the area. This process accelerated in the 19th Century when the unemployed Parish Poor were set to work on road building. Respects
14 Apr 2011 - Public Reply to Bernard GREEN:
You've really stirred my memories. While I well remember Bearman's Furniture shop in the High Street (My wife and I ran a fish & chip shop and restaurant at the top of the High Street opposite the Baths in the early 1960s) it is your reference to Wells Brimtoys and to the Walthamstow Carnival that started me off.
The Wells Brimtoys company manufactured a large range of metal plate toys, many of them clockwork operated, and was originally sited c1920 in Somers Road and later removed to Stirling Road some time after 1938. It exported toys all over the world and continued to manufacture during WW2. By 1949, it employed some 700 people who were predominantly from Walthamstow. It ceased manufacturing somewhere about 1965. The main reason for its demise was the emergence of cheap manufacturing companies in the far east.. Today there are many people who collect toys particularly their range of buses and pocket toys. (If you want to see for yourself take a look on Ebay)
And this reminiscence led me on to Britains Ltd whose factory was situated in Blackhorse Lane. It doubly reminiscent for me because I knew the company well when I was a little boy in Islington just after WW2. It was situated in Hornsey Rise with a large depot at Seven Sisters Road. My father was at teacher training college and money was tight so my mother, along with many others, supplemented the family income by 'home work'. Today, with the development of computers and the internet, working at home has become the 'in' thing. It wasn't like that for my mother. She worked for a pittance, painting, assembling and packing Britain's lead soldiers in our Islington prefab home.
Twenty years later, my wife, for the same reason, did similar home work (But not the painting) for the same company in a Walthamstow Priory Court flat. It is ironic that, if they thought about it, that most people who bought the beautifully packaged toys thought that they were made by cheap labour in China or Korea. They never dreamed that it was made by cheap labour in Walthamstow. Apart from Britains, Walthamstow had a number of factories that relied on local 'home workers' eg: Banghams in Wood Street whose 'home workers' assembled Xmas crackers etc and it would be very interesting to learn of other people's experience of this.
Still the work had its perks. Essentially, what happened was that the women collected boxes of the components of the toys from the factory. The amount that they collected was supposed to make a certain number of boxes of the toys. Most of the toys had many components that had to be assembled, then the boxes had to be made up and packed with the toys.
What happened in reality was that more often than not there were not the correct number of components to make up the boxes and sometimes not enough box material. This then meant another trip to the factory to collect the components to make up the numbers. However, there were often a small surplus of some components. It didn't take long to realise that if you made up the number of components to match the 'overs' you ended up with some surplus boxes of the toys that the factory didn't know about!
Was it dishonest? - well yes it probably was, but we saw it as some tiny compensation for the appalling small amount of money that you earned by turning your home into a factory?
And so to the 'parade' that David Bendeth remembers. This is obviously the Walthamstow Carnival and fete that I am surprised doesn't seem to have been mentioned before by any of your contributers. Essentially, it was an annual Carnival and Fete, that took place every year during the long August Bank Holiday weekend.
The Carnival was held on the Saturday and consisted of decorated Floats, and cars, marching bands and individual participants dressed as Clowns etc. At the head of the Carnival procession was a carriage that contained the Walthamstow Carnival Queen and her attendants. The Queen was selected via a beauty competition that was run by the Carnival committee and the Walthamstow Guardian. The winner became the Queen for the year and the runners up were her maids of honour. In addition to 'our' Queen there were often other local Borough Carnival Queens taking part in the parade.
The parade set off from Walthamstow Town Hall in the presence of the Mayor and other dignitaries, after the Floats etc had been judged in various categories and awarded certificates for excellence. It then wound its way around Walthamstow streets collecting money for the Mayor's designated charity. Quite large crowds lined the route all the way round and contributed generously.
The Walthamstow Fete was held on the Bank Holiday Monday in the substantial grounds of George Monoux school. It was a traditional fete with stalls of all kinds and various activities. It attracted substantial numbers of people. I have written separate pieces about the Carnival and Fete from my perspective as a participant from the Priory Court Residents and Tenants Association.
12 Apr 2011 - Public Reply to Bernard GREEN:
The main part of the Town Hall, the entrance steps (Although we've got a disability ramp there now as well), the entrance hall, the first floor Mayor's Parlour, Committee Rooms, the Town Hall Chamber vestibule and the Chamber itself are still very much as they were when I first knew the building some 40 years ago. There is a small exhibition of the regalia of the previous Boroughs of Chingford, Walthamstow & Leyton that now make up Waltham Forest and a splendid large picture of Baron Valentine La Touche McEntee who was once the Mayor and an MP for Walthamstow. (He was an Irish emigrant who originally was on the far left of the Socialist Movement and over the years gradually moved further to the right. He was made a Baron as a reward for giving up his Walthamstow Parliamentary seat in favour of Clement Attlee after the Labour Government was defeated in 1951).
On the walls inside the Chamber are polished wooden boards that bear the names of past Mayors , Aldermen and Freemen of the Borough. Unfortunately, my favourite WC sign on the 1st floor Gents Toilet that said "Gentlemen Members Only" has now gone. The fountain and pool were refurbished some years ago and It would be great if you were to bring your toy boat and sail it again on the pond. The reception staff are nice people and I'm sure that, if necessary, they would help to recover your boat if it became becalmed...
From Daniel: Attendace is free (except meals), but registration (also free) is required because of limited seats available...
11 Apr 2011 - General:
Hi John and Daniel, really lovely website. I love the old photographs. Just an outside shot really. I am an editorial photographer who works for national newspapers and magazines. I noticed you had some old photos from a Charles and Di street party in Pembroke Rd and was wondering if you had heard of any street parties taking place for Will and Kates royal wedding that are happening on the same street that held a party for Charles and Di"s wedding. I want to do a "then and now" project. Any leads would be greatly appreciated. Thanks very much.
8 Apr 2011:
I am sending a picture of the house I lived in as a child on Palmerston road.
8 Apr 2011 - Gathering:
I am hoping to be able to attend some of the events in June, but until my diary is fixed (house sale in June) I am unable to confirm which, if any, days. One place I would like to visit is the Town Hall in Forest Road. My father worked there in the 1950"s and early 60"s from when I have good memories of his office and the grand corridors in the building. Though, I suspect, the place will have been internally changed beyond all recognition and the aroma of polish will never be there again. I do still have the boat I used to sail on the pond.. Perhaps a mini regatta could be arranged, though I doubt the porter will still have a ball of string for rescuing boats caught by the submerged rocks (the lights round the fountains). Regards,
6 Apr 2011:
I first played for the Club when I was 15, playing for the Extra II v Old Parkonians in the Summer of 1959 at Buck Walk, Walthamstow. Happy days indeed! The Club is still in existence, and is due to celebrate 150 years next year 2012! There is a Club site on the Internet for those interested. Please find attached a 1 XI photo taken during the Walthamstow Cricket Club"s Centenary Year 1962:
3 Apr 2011:
My Great Grandfather, Joseph Powell lived in Mark House, 1 Markhouse Road in the 1890"s. He died there in 1897 aged only 45. Do you know of any photographs of Mark House or any details of when it was demolished. Regards
From Daniel: I do not have at hand a picture of Mark House, but I can tell you that it was demolished in 1898, a year after your Gt.Grandfather died (so young!!). However, from my info, Mark House stood at nos. 214-252, Markhouse Road, and not at no. 1...
MARCH MAILS - [Top]
30 Mar 2011 - MAYNARD ROAD PRIMARY SCHOOL FOOTBALL AND CRICKET TEAMS 1953 - 1956:
Hi Daniel, Please find attached some sporting photo memories of my time at my Primary School in Walthamstow E.17 1953 - 1956. I have tried to remember as many names as I could so please excuse me if I have failed to remember all of them. In the 1953 - 54 team I was playing 2 years out of my age being only 9 at the time, and I remember meeting up again with some of the lads at Warwick Senior School later on.My memories of the teachers in the photos were Mr Jones being a Welshman and very keen on both rugby and football although we never played rugby at Maynard Road. Mr Hallett a very strict teacher who I remember a number of times while rubbing out on his blackboard as they were known in my days he would suddenly turn and throw the wooden rubber in the direction of pupils who may have been making a noise or misbehaving, and there would be such a cloud of chalk everywhere.It was so funny , but effective ! Mr Frost very keen on his football and cricket, and a teacher I looked up to and who encouraged me in my sports. Mr Birmingham was the Headmaster, and very keen on schools football being also associated with the Walthamstow Schools District and Essex Schools Football teams. Salisbury Hall, just off the North Circular Road close to the Crooked Billet was the venue for most of our games what I recollect along with the George White Sports Ground in Billet Road for representing Walthamstow Schools. I hope some of my old school friends will recognise themselves , and feel like contacting me after the 50 + years that have gone since these very happy memories for me.
1954 - 55 Maynard Road Primary Football Team : Mr Jones, Mr Hallett, Mr Frost, Mr Birmingham (Headmaster) 2nd row : Julian Marler, Richard Hendry, ? , ?, ?, Alan Stephenson 3rd row : David Newstone, John Oram, ? , ? , ? Front row : Donald Haley , ? .
1955 Maynard Road Primary Cricket Team : Mr Birmingam , Mr Jones , Mr Hallett , Mr Frost 2nd row ? , David Hurst , Jeff Matthews , Julian Marler Front row : ? . Alan Titley , Alan Stephenson , ? On floor : ? , ?.
1955 - 56 Maynard Road Primary Football Team : Mr Birmingham (Headmaster), Mr Hallett, Mr Jones, Mr Frost 2nd row : Graham Heard, David Newstone, ? , Trevor Harvey Front row : Julian Marler, John Bocking , Alan Stephenson , ? , Donald Haley
25 Mar 2011 - General:
Hi Daniel, As promised please find photo"s attached from my times in the late 1950"s enjoyed at a youth club called The League of Three, Walthamstow which I believe was based in a building in Truro Road/Eldon Road off the High Street, Walthamstow E17. The Club badge had the words Mental, Moral and Physical formed in a triangle. Three, I believe, and this is only my assumption, stood for three things in our lives Mental strength, Physical strength and Moral strength perhaps any ex member could enlighten us?. I was introduced to the Club by my brother Norman Stephenson, who was a lot older than myself, and had friends there Derek Gipps, Roy Fisher, Chris and Ernie Selsby to name a few, and the Club was very sports orientated with a very enthusiastic and popular leader by the name of Mr A.K Bridge, who was affectionately known by everybody as "Uncle'. It's a pity I never did get to find out his real christian name. It was an all male Club not for any specific reason, but that"s how it was. Midweek was a Club night, I believe Friday"s because no school the next day, and I remember being introduced as a 11 year old to badminton, billiards, table tennis, chess, cricket and athletics, and others. There was also a fretwork room also for some reason we used to collect "Bun Pennies" I believe for either the Club or a charity. On Sundays there was always a church service you could attend, but it was not compulsory. A few hymns certainly didn"t go amiss, and in fact was very enjoyable. I used to walk from my home at 147 Barclay Road at the bottom close to Whipps Cross so it was quite a walk, but must say well worth it as the adult members were great characters along with some of my mates. I remember a few Phil Arnold and Alan Aylott, who I believe lived local and went to William McGuffie the local school. Tony Davies who I introduced. However, my most memorable time was when the Club went camping to Galmpton near to Brixham in Devon. It was my first experience at camping, and we had a fantastic time especially the ones on their first trip because they were tossed high in a blanket to mark the occasion. Great fun and a memory never to be forgotten that"s for sure along with the naughty pranks we got up to after lights out! Down side was we all had to chip in and help especially at washing up time at meal times! Happy days for certain adding to my great memories of being a Walthamstow lad, and proud! Regards and best wishes,
(Click on images to enlarge)
8 Mar 2011 - General:
I wonder if any of your readers have any memories or reminiscences about William Morris Hall that is in Somers Road by the railway by Palmerston Road. This is what Mick Holder wrote about the Hall on the occasion of its centenary in December 2009.
FEBRUARY MAILS - [Top]
19 Feb 2011:
Hi Daniel, Its Ed giving you grief again, had an interesting email regarding my first part of story. I"m hoping to hear again as a photo was mentioned that I would like to see.
That also reminded me that I sent some to you, one was for putting on the stories so they can see the authors, which I thought was a brilliant idea, if they see one, others will follow. Have looked on the gallery site but have"nt seen the others I sent to you, I know you are a busy boy but is there a chance soon?
The only other thing, was on the email i received still had my old server"s address on it, when you get a chance can you change it to the one on part two of my story. Sorry to be a pest. All the Best.
19 Feb 2011 - From Daniel :
Many thanks, Eddie. Here are the pictures you sent. I have amended your email address in Part 1 of your memories. Cheers.
13 Feb 2011 :
Hi WMs kindred spirit Webies! I expect, like me, some of you will have already earmarked the dates for the WMs Group Gathering in Walthamstow, to celebrate the WMs 10th anniversary, commencing on Thurs 23 - Sun 26 JUne 2011.
As I now live in Bristol - therefore not able to just nip along from a local abode - I"ve booked myself into a local Hotel from the Wed. This is to ensure I"m there to join you at the initial Welcome launch on the first morning, before being escorted to the day"s exploratory delights.
Not only do we have the privilege & joy of being able to chat to each other via this fabulous & FREE website, it appears that John, the Founder, plus Daniel, the Co-Editor, are bursting with ideas to ensure this will be an ANNIVERSARY to remember by all who join them. The very reason we log onto the WMs website is because we have a shared affinity with Walthamstow &/or the surrounding areas.
Maybe you"ve got some ideas of your own you"d like to share with them, too - if so, let John &/or Daniel know. Perhaps there"s something close to your heart that, if humanly possible, they"d be able to organise & include in the FINAL Itinerary!?
All we have to do is LET THEM KNOW WE"LL BE THERE, in order to enjoy all the wonderful things they"re working so diligently at on our behalf, as well as some moral support. My personal hope & desire is the prospect that I might even find that ONE OR MORE of you is a living-link to me, via my Walthamstow ancestors. [Meanwhile, you might care to look at my entries in the Family History section ie either under "M' for MILLER, etc &/or ''S" for STEWART etc.] If not, maybe you know somebody who might?]
There"ll be places to go, things to see ie some old Films of Walthamstow, a musical evening to get your feet tapping, some interesting people to come along to chat to us. (We"ll have our own private Group Gathering venue to enjoy much of this, too!) Of course, there"ll be our Group's evening meals, too!
Unless you"re lucky enough to have nearby friends/relatives to lodge with - which would save you getting up at the crack of dawn to arrive in plenty of time to be there at the beginning of each day"s adventures - you may wish to consider looking at some of the Hotels, situated reasonably close to the starting block.
It"s just occurred to me that, maybe SOMEBODY could "leak' the details of this to the local press, too - why not? It"d certainly make interesting reading for the locals, from an historical point of view (for the young, right up to the 3rd age groups). From our point of view, if we were given an opportunity, BEFOREHAND, to announce that we"ll definitely be there PLUS give our name (age if not so shy!), the Town where we"re now from + some of the names & former addresses of our ancestors, & dates, a record of this could be compiled for the Newspaper Reporter. Well, he wouldn"t have to work hard for his supper on that day & if it was printed, it will end up in the Newspaper Archives for others to find in the future. Of course, there"s no guarantees that the 'leak" would work this well in our favour BUT, it"d be well worth considering, eh!
Daniel was kind enough to introduce me to www.booking.com - which turned out to be a fantastic website for booking Hotel accommodation ANYWHERE. Just type in the name of the area you"re particularly interested in - low & behold, you"ll end up with an excellent selection (with FULL details to help make your choice!). The great thing is that, if booked via them, for MOST of the Hotels listed, you"ll NOT be expected to pay upfront - but they"ll need your credit card to SECURE the reservation. I was most impressed with the fact that, should it be necessary to cancel the reservation, there"ll be NO FEES - unless the Terms & Conditions of the Hotel specify it.
Well, as a Snr Cit (bred & born in Plaistow 1938) I tend to be very wary of buying &/or booking anything online. As they say, you"re never too old to learn, which can be quite exciting at times.
Phew! Hadn"t planned to chat on quite so much - could be some of you have already dropped off by now!? In any event, should any of you feel we could have a "link' & wish to send your chatty emails to me, I"d be happy to respond. OK!
I do hope this"ll encourage many of you to earmark your diaries to come join the merry throng - if so, let John or Daniel know, which will help them organise relevant catering, etc numbers. Kindest regards,
13 Feb 2011 - From Daniel :
Many thanks, Pam, for your encouraging words. I am preparing a short "questionnaire', that will be soon available. A newsletter is also due very shortly, that will concentrate on the gathering. Kindest regards to all.
11 Feb 2011 - Public reply to Susan:
What a beautiful photograph this is, all the children would have had a note to say the photographer would be there at the appointed time. Thus all the children are spruced up and looking so smart with ties on some of the boys and the girls all looking so pretty and neat. Also what is evident to is the "all white' class members in those days before the advent of the coloured children. Such a photo should be preserved as an example to modern day photography. The only omission is the form teacher who should have been standing next to his or her class.
10 Feb 2011:
I only found your site a couple of weeks ago and was looking through the photo gallery. I think I came across a school photo of my brother. He was seated at the front of photo and was ringed round.
If it is him, it was taken at Mission Grove School in about 1954-5. I think I recognise a few faces in the photo, one of them being a blonde girl in the second row from the back, fifth from the right. My brother has since died, but I would love to know any information about this picture. My father"s family had lived in Walthamstow for a few generation, my grandfather was a fireman at the old station in Forest rd.I believe there maybe other Newitts still in Walthamstow. I would love to hear from any thereabouts, I also went to Mission Grove from approx. 1952 and was in Miss Tanners class then Miss Popes, I went onto Markhouse Rd. then my family moved to Canvey Island. Thank you for your time, hoping to hear from you. Kind regards,
Susan WHITE (nee NEWITT)
8 Feb 2011 - Topography:
Dear Daniel and John, I am a photographer, working on a project surrounding the history of my grandfather, I have an image that he has taken, and on the back it is stamped "LEY 8399, Royale Studios, 630A LEA BRIDGE ROAD (NR. BAKERS ARMS) LEYTON. E10. I was wondering if you remember this studio and if you have any information regarding the studio? I would really appreciate your help, thank you for your time. Regards,
8 Feb 2011 - Public Reply:
Hi Claire, Have read your email on Walthamstow Memories site. Between 1942 and 1962 I lived at 60 Linford Road, which was the next road to Brandon Road. The houses at the ends of Brandon, Linford, and Cuthbert Roads were demolished in the early sixties and new flats and houses were built on the site. Also a large carpark was provided with posts denoting the entry to them and restricting the height of vehicles.
The layout of our house was much the same as most of the houses which were demolished with 4 rooms upstairs and 3 rooms and a scullery downstairs. The toilets were outside. Most of the houses were divided into an upstairs and a downstairs flat, so there were two families to each house. Our garden backed on to the railway line which was the Liverpool Street to Chingford line and a large shunting shed was situated at the end of our road where engines and spare carriages were kept until the peak hours in the morning and evening. Our roads were joined at the far end by Chapel Lane and there was a church named Brandon Mission along this road. This was demolished as well and a brick building was erected further along to house Brandon Mission.
Good luck with the hunting.
Carole LACEY (nee COOPER)
7 Feb 2011 - Public Reply to Tony:
In your contribution you describe a teacher named Barltrop as your bete noire. I was somewhat surprized and a little hurt to read this description as Robert Barltrop is an important figure in London Working class history whose books on Walthamstow are a brilliant description of what life was like during that time.. Please see underneath an edited Wiki history of him.Respects. Bill Bayliss.
(read about Robert Barltrop)
3 Feb 2011 - Public Reply:
Hello Dianne, I too lived in Waverley Road but a lot later than your folk. I lived there between 1948 and 1970 but my father"s family lived at 81 since just after the First World War until 1986. Unfortunately, I think they are all dead now. I may still have an aunt, my father"s sister, living in Campus Road. She will be 100 on the Royal Wedding day if she is still alive.
You asked where Waverley Road residents might be buried. I know of two places. One is the cemetery at Queens Road E17 and the other the City of London or Manor Park Cemetery. I imagine both have offices that keep records although I do not know for how long. I wish you well with your enquiries.Kind regards,
Jean ROBINSON (née
2 Feb 2011 - General:
Hi, My name is Sharon Boultwood and I"ve lived, like my family all our lives in Walthamstow. I am interested in local history and recently done a mini dissertation on Walthamstow housing. I am currently collecting information for my main dissertation. I am looking at motherhood and marriage during the second world war. I was wondering if you could post a advert to see if anyone was willing to be interviewed. The aim of the topic is to light the social changes of WWII. Many women had affairs and were left with babies. Others married people already married. People married and at the end of the war found they were not suited to each other. I am trying to find anyone that is willing to talk about their experiences of this issues and, if so, either contact me or email me...I would be grateful if you could help. Kind Regards,
1 Feb 2011 - Family History:
Hello Daniel, Found your site while trying to do some family history research and wonder if you can advise me. Looking for living relatives of my grandfather Arthur Lowe who was born in Walthamstow in 1904 and lived at 18 Waverley Road. He must have left England by 1920 or after to join the navy and never went back. Found a sister when we went to England about 20 years ago - Lily Teskey, who I imagine would have passed on by now. His father Edwin died before he left and wondering where he might be buried if he lived at Waverley Road. Mother"s name Ada. Where to start would be helpful...
JANUARY MAILS - [Top]
30 Jan 2011 - Public Reply to Laurence:
Clarkson Road can be seen online on the excellent 1908 map of London from MAPCO the URL is
It is located off Shernhall Street between the end of Church Hill Road and Church Lane. It roughly follows the line of the present day Marlowe Road.
30 Jan 2011 - Family History:
Hi Daniel and John, I am researching my family history: my great, great grandfather George Dowdeswell was a resident of Walthamstow from about 1888 onward"s. In 1891, he and his wife Ellen along with their 11 children were living at 2 Longfellow"s road, George was then a retired met police inspector and was working as a school board inspector. In 1901 the family were then living at 112 Albert road, Walthamstow. Does anyone know"s if these addresses and even the houses still exsist?
My great grandmother Alice Dowdeswell married Ernest Jeffery on the 1st august 1900 in St Stephen"s church, Walthamstow, which I think no longer exsists.
In 1891 Ernest, aged 14, was an assistant in a lace warehouse. He was living at 39 Cuthbert street, Walthamstow, with parents Jane and John. In 1911 he and Alice, his wife, were living at 59 Grove road, Walthamstow. They had 6 children, 3 of whom were triplets: Muriel Faith, Phyllis Hope and Winifred Charity Jeffery. Winifred died at 5 month"s old..... Ernest was still working in the drapery trade as a manufacturers agent. In 1926 Ernest, then aged 47, left his family, apparently for a younger woman - possibly Henrietta Ada Rich????....no one knows where he went after his departure, did he stay in walthamstow or surrounding area???..
If anyone knows anything about the above names, I would love to hear... Thank you so much. Regards.
27 Jan 2011 - Public Reply:
Laurence, The Police Station in Lea Bridge Road was situated on the corner of Shrublands Road, the corner nearest to Clapton. It was not near Clarkson Road which was in the Wood Street area and was renamed Marlowe Road sometime between the 1901 and 1911 censuses. Marlowe Road is on present day maps. Wellington Road is off of Forest Road towards the Black Horse Road station. I cannot help you with the Terrace name in Boundary Road, which you may know is on the Walthamstow and Leyton boundary.
27 Jan 2011:
Dear John and Daniel, my mother was employed in Walthamstow at a Fish Export Company from 1978 - 1980 and she is attempting to find out the name of the Company. Please can you assist us with finding this information? I look forward to your response.
26 Jan 2011:
Dear Daniel, I have just come across your site and would like to add my details to your list and subscribe to your newsletter. Your site is very interesting and I would like to be able to add to it with photos or text in the next few months. I was born in Walthamstow and have lived here all of my life, my parents and grandparents lived in the area, at the bottom of the market. I went to Monoux school in the 1970"s so I feel I know the area well! Regards.
26 Jan 2011 - Family History:
I wonder if anyone can help with this enquiry. My great-grandfather Charles Scorey Coles was a Met Police Officer and stationed in the Walthamstow/Leyton area from around 1877 until he was promoted to Sergeant in 1883. His wife Annie gave birth to three of their children (including my grandfather) at the following three addresses: 85 Wellington Road; 4 Elizabeth Cottages, Clarkson Road; and Number 3 C???on Terrace, Boundary Road. I can not find Clarkson Road on maps today but guess from the 1881 Census enumerator"s description that it may be part of Lea Bridge Road now.
Does anyone know where Clarkson Road used to be?
Does anyone know where the police station moved to in Lea Bridge Road after it left the old site of present-day Vestry House Museum? Could it have been near or even part of my ancestor"s house in Clarkson Road?
24 Jan 2011 - Family History:
Dawsons in Walthamstow. I"m researching my family history and the Dawsons are very much connected to Walthamstow. In particular my grandfather James Dawson lived at 74 Beulah Rd. where he married Elizabeth Hampton, he"s been a mystery to me, no photos, he had quite a long military history. He died in Whipps Cross hospital in April 1947.
James Dawson was born in June 1894 in Bethnal Green, in August 1916 he was living at 47 Ringwood rd with my grandmother Esther Agnes. He joined the1/7th Essex Reg. in WW1 and after the war enlisted with the Border Regiment before returning to Walthamstow
Does anyone know of him?
24 Jan 2011:
Hello, I have just read the memories of John Newell. I lived in West Avenue -, just round the corner from the Newell family and was friends with Valerie and the Gordon girls. One of my abiding memories of Valerie and Carol Gordon , when we were all at Henry Maynard Junior School, was that they collected rubber bands. They gradually made them into a huge bouncy ball! Also we used to go to one of their houses to act out small dramas written by one of them and there was an old laundry basket full of the most wonderful costumes that we were allowed to use!!This is a great site - keep up the good work!
Mary JENKIN (nee STOWE)
23 Jan 2011 - Public Reply:
Clair, The Godfrey edition of an Ordnance Survey map for Walthamstow East, dated 1914, shows all the individual houses on both sides of Brandon Road. The road, off of Wood Street near the station, has a mission hall at the end and is linked to Linford Road by a small alley named Chapel Street. Looking at a modern map the three roads of Cuthbert, Linford and Brandon lead up to Stocksfield Road which was probably constructed at the time the area was altered. If you look at a satellite aerial view via Bing, you will see what the area is like today. Brandon Road and its two neighbours have been shortened to accommodate Stocksfield Road. The old houses have been replaced with blocks of flats. What you consider to be a car park looks to be a tarmac play area with a pair of goal posts at one end. Certainly Brandon Road is still there but a little shorter than of old. I hope this helps with your query.
21 Jan 2011:
Daniel, I hope you do not mind me contacting you with my query. I have recently started to assist my 14 yr old stepdaughter research her family tree. With the help of relatives we have established that her great grandfather Edward William Leach was born on 18th April 1902 at 31 Brandon Road, Walthamstow (fathers name William Leach, mothers name Mary Teresa Leach [nee Wells]).
After looking on Google maps, I believe that 31 Brandon Rd is now a car park! Could you point me in the right direction in establishing what happened to the property?
Any assistance would be gratefully appreciated.
17 Jan 2011:
Hello John, I found these photos of the street party in Borwick Ave for the Queen's Coronation in 1953 I was 5 years old I am the little boy with his his party hat on with mother standing behind me. My name is Brian Freeman.
Street Party Borwick Ave - Queen"s Coronation 1953
Street Party Borwick Ave - Queen's Coronation 1953 (2)
14 Jan 2011:
Hi, I attached 4 photos of a party in Guildsway, Walthamstow- Families from other streets also attended, including me from Millfield Avenue. Clement Attlee MP is in one of them. Hope these are of interest. I was born in Walthamstow but now reside in Devon and find your site very interesting. Regards,
13 Jan 2011:
Hi all! I wish you a very happy new year. I am sorry that I have been unable to contact you as my computer has been sick but ok now.
As much as I would love to come over and see you all well when you can get together take a lot of Photos as I have been in Australia since 74 and love it: While you are shivering in the cold of UK we have all had our air conditioners on been that hot!
But people in Queensland have not been so lucky: they have been flooded out, houses under water to the rooves. We are getting reports daily as being in the dog breeding and show we know a lot of people who have the same hobby as we do. So know most people with the same breed as us. Some of the poor soles have had to send there dogs interstate because of the water. But there are ordinary people wading through water they have Children of course most of the kids think its wonderful doing that or rowing themselves in the boats.But they have No fresh water or food so the government have had to take them to safer places. I pray to God the water will subside, so people can if possible get back to the hard work of clearing there homes up.
I am living in Adelaide which is supposed to be the driest place in the world we have had a drought for 5 years although we are in the country we was lucky enough to have tap water.
Good Luck to your fun days wish I could be over there with you but cant afford it being a pensioner .if I could I would be over in a shot! Bless you all in Blighty
13 Jan 2011:
Dear John, Walthamstow Schools Football Team 1959-1960. At last I have managed to find the photo I reported to you having your dad in as one of the teachers who coached and looked after us. Other teachers are Mr. Les Birmingham my Headmaster at my old primary school Maynard Road, Mr. Frost also a teacher at Maynard Road, Mr. Shepherd and of course Mr. Cyril Abley. Unfortunately there are two adults I cannot identify. One is behind your dad, and the other person next to Mr.Abley. Perhaps you may be able to help me. I have a lot more photos to scan and send to you all with Walthamstow connections, and may prod some memories of the followers of your great site. Again, without these teachers I doubt whether my career would have taken off. I will never forget the memories your dad and Mr. Abley gave me or my very happy childhood in Walthamstow E17 !
Walthamstow Schools Cricket 1960. If my memory serves me, we had a very good side with Rod Kennedy (front left next to myself). both fortunate to play for London Schools and Essex Schools. I believe Rod may have played or trials for England Schools, but not sure. He was certainly good enough as he was a tall lad and a very fast bowler! I remember most of the lads, but sadly only remember Mr Shepherd from the teachers. Again, I can name most of the lads, and would like to put names to faces if at all possible.
11 Jan 2011:
Hi John, I only came across your site last night, and was so surprised to come across John Newell, and his memories of life in E 17! John I remembered very well from our time at the Maynard Road Primary School! I recognised him straight away, even though it was all those years ago! Although we didn't hang out much together due to the fact I lived at the bottom of Barclay Road at 147, close to Shernhall Street and Lea Bridge Road, and John as he mentions in his memories lived up at St Mary Road.
Wow! What a fascinating read of his time in Walthamstow it was.
I too remember playing in the playground, flicking cigarette cards against the walls, playing 'Gobs' five stones, playing football with a tennis ball, and of course the game stool ball! Throw in the occasional game of 'He', and life was fantastic. Treasured moments indeed!
As John says, I was into all sports at Maynard Road, and was fortunate enough to go on to play for West Ham United, together with Crystal Palace, Portsmouth and England U 23. I guess thats why my school work suffered as he rightly says not being good at Maths and English. But hey I fulfilled my dream from my Walthamstow upbringing!
All those memories came flooding back of my time at the school, and especially with John entering a picture of us at the London Zoo 1953 with Mr Clarke and Mr Asprey. I found myself on John's right shoulder in the picture, and had never seen it before. I remember many of the lads in the picture and some of their names David Hurst 'Hursty', John Mc Guinness, Donald Hayley, Trevor Harvey, Graham Heard 'Heardy', ? Palmer, Alan Titley, ? Matthews.
The reason I have contacted you is because I tried to email John, but had difficulty. Would you be able to help me by providing his email address so I can say hello?
Keep up the good work on the site, and pleased to share some very happy memories with you. Regards
11 Jan 2011:
Hi I am wondering if you can help me, do you know the name of the record shop in Walthamstow Market in the 1970's. I am sure it had a stall outside it too.. think it was half way down but dont quote me, maybe opposite Woolworths...
4 Jan 2011:
Daniel, could you put up a piece on the website asking if anyone can recall the name of the girl from Albany Road, Walthamstow off Low Hall Lane and who became a well known writer of short stories for women's magazines?
She might have been called "Elizabeth" and joined the Wrens with my mother Kathleen Fryer in about 1944. "Elizabeth" caught polio and spent the rest of her life in an iron lung writing. She lived at the top end of Albany Road where it joins Low Hall Lane. Maybe No 3. She probably went to Markhouse Road and George Gascoigne schools.
Her father was a coal man and the image and sound of the one played by Stanley Holloway in the film "My Fair Lady". He was always clean and did not drink or smoke!
The lady, if she was called "Elizabeth," was quite famous in the 50s 60s and early 70s.
4 Jan 2011:
I was born in Wanstead and lived in St Stephens Ave off Beulah Road. In 1960 the family moved to Western Australia. Our family name is FINCH Dad Chas, Mum Kit, my sister Gloria and myself Pauline. I was just browsing over the net the other day and came across Walthamstow Memories. Gloria and I returned in 2004 and our old home was still standing then...Amazing. I just love to read all the posts, gleaning all the names to see if I recognise any of them. We drove down from Thetford to park at the old Henry Maynard school gates. What happened to the red brick building? Anyway, I was tossed out of the car and told to "go Home"... which I promptly did... up the street turn left down the alleyacross the road and down the alley to number 10... what a blast!!! I remember there was a Bakery on one corner of Beulah and St Stephens Ave and a grocers on the other and Connaught Hospital was at the top of the road. Also I remember visiting a museum (Vestry Museum) after school one day and being very impressed by a car with mirrors under it for display......How amazed was I when we revisited the museum in 2004 to see it still there. O but how small it was... It looked so big when I was just 8 years old. I hope to continue reading WM in the future, a great job. Cheers,
Pauline ROWE (nee FINCH)
2 Jan 2011 - W'stow Gathering: Hi Daniel, Happy New Year. Thank you for your newsletter. my husband and myself are very interested in attending your Walthamstow Memories gathering. I also have a couple of friends that I know would love to come along. My friends and myself have recently made contact after not seeing one another for around forty years, and we all have many lovely memories of our home town Walthamstow. Have you any idea of dates, as I missed your last one as we were away, and I am trying to plan a family reunion and also a holiday around that time, but if I know the dates I will make sure I arrange something around it. I look forward to hearing from you. Regards,
02 Jan 2011:
Hello again Daniel. Following the publishing of my own Walthamstow Memories article on my http://micksmuses.wordpress.com website which you also kindly reproduced on your own WM website, I received a number of favourable private emails from individuals via both websites for whom my article obviously rekindled their own memories.
This has led to me writing another Walthamstow based article for my own website at http://micksmuses.wordpress.com/2010/12/31/walthamstow-memories-2/
As you will see from the article, my own personal experiences on entertainment facilities for youngsters in Walthamstow in the 1950/60's was poor. The article also contains some of my experiences of local cinemas. Once again as the article is broadly in line with the objectives of your own site, please feel free to use it if you find it is appropriate. Regards
Michael GILBEY [Goto Top of Page]
From Daniel: You may read Michael Gilbey's "Part 2 - Entertainment" [here]
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