Postbag 2020

MARCH MAILS [Top of Page]

Hi Ray
My name is Bob Staples and I was at William Elliott Whittingham school from 1952 until December 1956. I was a member of Whit house colour green, if you remember, the other houses being Wills (yellow) Elliott(blue) Hams(red). I remember Mr Green history teacher and Mr Dobson woodwork and Mr Below my form teacher who caned me for doodling in my English book. Mr Spicer the sports master chose me for the eight hundred yard race and I can still remember the stitch pain running up the hill part of the running track at the back of the school in the annual sports day, even today. I am seventy eight years old and thanks to the sports events we were encouraged to enter ie football, cricket, athletics and gymnastics during the years at WEW I am sure this has helped to keep me in good health over the past sixty odd years, since leaving. I still play golf three times a week at least.

My great friend at the time was David Mc Millan, who lived at 10 Sinnot Road E17, who was also my best man at my wedding in 1963. Unfortunately we have lost contact with each other over the years and it would be great if we could catch up with each other again before the GRIM REEPER comes to call.

All the best


Hi Daniel,
My grandfather lived at 88 Church Hill, Walthamstow, with his common in law wife from about 1930-1961 is possible to verify any information about them?
His name was Morris Pechenik and his partner was Ranky, she took his surname.
The name Morris could also be Moshe rather than Maurice.
Best wishes



Looks like The Walthamstow Cricket Club is getting a name? Barry Melton and Stephane Missri will be playing there on 1st July, Bruce Barthol and Ron Trueman-Border will be there on 5th August and Julie Felix will be playing there will support from local legend John Arthur on the 24th September. Tickets available soon at Barking Spider. Seating is limited, so please request a seat when booking and one will be reserved for you.
Tickets may also be limited on the door.
Email me if you have any questions.


Good evening Daniel
Me name is Ensenora Chung, a student at London South Bank University doing Housing studies.
I am doing a research on regeneration of Walthamstow I am wondering if you have any pictures of the old post office on the corner of Hoe Street and the High street you can share.
Thank you for you help

Ensenora CHUNG

From Daniel: Dear Ensenora, I could only find the following link: Barry Rider's email, but I'm afraid it's not the same PO you're looking for. Perhaps one or more of our visitors may help?

Hi I'm looking for photos of Erlind Hoxha, who went to Warwick School for boys, Walthamstow, in 2000-2003.
I need to find proof of him at that school for Home Office any help would be much appreciated.


I've just dug out some class photos from my time at Mission Grove School. I've attached the one from my final year there. The teacher is Miss Tuckwell.
Is there anyone out there who appears or knows someone on it? I can put names to some of my classmates but, after 60 years, not all. I'm at the end of the top row on the left.

Class Photo 1960 Miss Tuckwell
(Click to enlarge)



I used to work at Rediffusion TV rentals in Wathamstow, 106a High St., during the early 1960's.
I have quite a few memories of local establishments & traders of the period.
One of my best memories is that of Tony's Cafe in Linden Road, where I used to regularly go for lunch, that is until I discovered the much more up-market Selborne Restaurant!
I'd be pleased to put some of these memories up on you site, if you are interested.


From Daniel: Many thanks, David. We are always happy to receive personal recollections from our visitors, so... go ahead!

I am looking for anyone that knew the Peck Family there was Joan, Doris, I think an Adrian, William and Margaret. Their mother was a Rickards, name of Kathleen. One of the sisters Winifred Ivy Rickards married George Tyler they went on to have 3 Children: David and Roger and Brenda they were twins.
Does anyone remember any of these people whilst growing up? They are DNA connected to me, but can not find anything about them.
Thank you

Jan G.

Hi all,
Who was the man who liked getting up and singing the pubs in the 1960s in Walthamstow and Leyton - he sung so good he did "Ho in the fox and hound", he named himself Ricky Watson?

Theresa PAICE

Good morning Daniel.
I am writing to you for some advise and action concerning the following. My wife Ann died last September following a lengthy illness. We had been married 63 years and had two children Andrew and Sally. Both attendees Thorpe Hall. This was in the 1970s.
Ann was a teacher at the school during this period. She had the reception class. Mrs Rutter was the headmistress. Ann wrote and illustrated several books about a character Jimmy Bean. She read them to her class on many occasions. i have recently found these books. I have sent the first book. to a publisher who has agreed to print and publish. It will shortly be available via Amazon and other retail outlets. All profits are going to the Queen Elizabeth Hospice and The British Lung Foundation.
I would like to send a copy to the school in the hope that perhaps some parent or other person or even Grandparent may remember Ann and her stories. Thanks, i look forward to hearing from you.


Anybody still out there who was at William Elliot secondary school between 1953-1957. I am still in contact with my old friend Gordon Mulholland?



Dear Friends, Followers & occasional Visitors,

  I hope you have enjoyed St. Valentine's Day with your loved ones.

  There are new pictures on "The Karilion" (Local Bands Section): many thanks to Norman Moore, ex-member of the band.

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

  Enjoy browsing your site & kindest regards

Hello Len,
How very sweet of you to write me about Ulisse. Indeed Pat & I do miss him very, very much. Over 16 years always together (only when we made short visits to UK, due to the mandatory quarantine, we left him well cared at home). He has travelled with us to Spain, France, Andorra (and even at Lourdes!) and I had made a special ramp for him in the car, so that he could comfortably sit in between the two front seats.
We took Ulisse in 2004. He was owned by a beggar who always sat in front of a church, very close to my shop.
The social worker told us that they had found a home for him, but Ulisse could not follow.
When Pat brought Ulisse to my shop for the first time, he greeted me as if we had known each other for ever: I was his "boss" - as you may well know, dogs decide who the 'boss' is (after them being the first one, of course!) We had him checked by a vet and all was well; had him properly washed and cleaned and since then he even slept with us!
In fact, I always thought that Pat & I were allowed to sleep in his dog's bed. He was so jealous about me, that Pat risked a few times to be bitten, should she get too close to me!
His health was quite good, even in his late years, except when we visited Florence last September. We had to take him to a vet hospital because of what seemed a bad gastritis. They checked him thoroughly and two days later they told us he could safely travel back to Spain. On our way, we had to stop at a vet in Cannes: he had vomited and looked really poorly. But after a few hours he picked up again and we were able to continue. When we took him to the vet here where we live, they told us that he had a cancer very close to his heart and that nothing could be done. Apparently he was expected to die within a few days. To the contrary, he was well & bright until the night before he died, several months later. He was only a little deaf and his sight wasn't at the best, but he would briskly run about.
He would stay on a couch next to me when I was at my desktop and, at about 10 pm in the evenings, he would start calling me for "bed time"!
You are right: we still feel him around us and expect to see him trot along at all times of the day (and night!).
His love - in particular for me - was really unconditional, as well ours for him. We always considered him our "four legged son".
How nice was Freddy too! He was very lucky to be saved by you: surely had a wonderful life since.
You & Pam are admirable! Still actively cycling about and moving houses!! Congratulations! God bless you!

Daniel QUINN

From Daniel: Please forgive me this very personal digression from the site's theme, but Len's message was so touching... that I just had to share.

Hello Daniel,
I just had a look at the old Walthamstow site and saw your message about Ulisse and I know how heart breaking a pet's passing can be as we have had that sad time several times.
It never gets any easier and our last dog was a rescue dog named Freddy (pictured below) whom we adopted when he was eight years old. We had Freddy for about 6 years and I really was attached to him despite the fact that he cost us about $10,000 in vet bills alone. At the end he was blind and deaf and also a twice a day injection diabetic. We finally helped him to pass at 14 years.
Only yesterday my daughter Fenella who lives 100 metres away now asked me if I still had Freddy's collar as she had some friends arrive for the weekend and they had forgotten to bring a collar for their dog. Freddy passed on February 26th two years ago but I still have all his coats and collars etc. We did have his ashes too but we decided to do as we had done with the others and scatter the ashes along his favourite runs and we enjoyed doing that. Needless to say as I went through his belongings I shed a few tears as it all came back to me.
Freddy was an Apricot coloured toy poodle although he was maybe a miniature as he was a bit taller but I absolutely loved him and he was the 4th poodle we have owned, the others were white and black and I loved them all. Prior to poodles we had Labradors and setters both Irish and English.
I am hoping that now we have moved to Busselton in the south west and have now sold the house in Perth we may get another dog but there are still a few problems ahead to sort out. Pam has had a moon boot on her foot for almost 9 weeks and we got the OK to remove it yesterday. We have a grandson's wedding to go to Perth for on February 29th and my daughter is going to America in March to have some mesh removed from her body and we shall be looking after her cats and dog for about a month.
Time is a healer Daniel and the pain does ease as time goes on but you will still see Ulisse everywhere around the house I am sure until the grief eases.
Meanwhile I am 83 this year and have joined the local cycling club and I am riding with them and my son in law too so I am quite fit other than some Arthritis in my right hand and I am consulting a specialist about that on Monday. Also now that Pam's foot is healed we hope to get out on our tandem bike as there is an excellent path system in Busselton. Pam is 82 next week.

Len Hall's "Freddy"


Bill Bayliss was a fountain of knowledge and he compiled the article about E.N. Bray P/ltd at my request and he did a wonderful job by sorting out the history of the companies founder. Personally I left the company around 1966/7 and finally England in 1970, however, I am now 83 this year and my apprenticeship stood me in good stead for the rest of my working life in Australia. Most of those people mentioned in the article especially Denis Cooper (my best man) and John Niall have now passed away as have many others, but actually I would like to know what did happen to the company before it closed down in Waltham Cross, I did hear that the name still existed for a while. So Martin Knowles get you thinking cap on and let us have the story and names too please! I recall Harry Newman, Earnie Willis, Mr Sayer and many others, but my memory is fading...


Hi Daniel,
Just thought I would send you a photo of my Father's Walthamstow Avenue's Badge. He had great pride in the Club, and was a good friend of Jim Lewis. His name was Edward Harry Slade and was Assistant Secretary to the Club during the war years of which he was very proud.
I was born in Walthamstow at 30 Rosslyn Road in 1946, but moved away when I was 3.

Walthamstow Avenue Football Club's Badge
Edward Harry Slade's personal Walthamstow Avenue FC's Badge


My mother, 2nd from top left, lived around Sinnot rd. Doreen Cornhill. Six sisters in total up to 1965ish. Not sure what school this would have been.

Doreen Cornhill - No School name
Unknown Walthamstow School - (Click on Image to enlarge)

WJMulQueen1 (no further names)

My name is John Powell I was the drummer in "The Karilion" for about one year. I am in the photos shown here. I would like to get in touch with anyone from the band. I was out of the country from 1974 to 2010 and now live in Chingford. Just for the record, I was the drummer for Brian Ford and the Fairlanes and the lead guitarist was Roger Crooks.


Hi Terry,
Thanks for emailing me. Since my comments don't seem to have appeared on the walthamstowmemories site, I was beginning to think they had ended up as junk.
Looking back, I'm surprised how little mixing there was between classes and years. I really only have memories of children in my class, in fact I'm unclear how many classes there were. I don't remember children being selected for a class or moving between classes, but I think there must have been more than one class for each year and I don't think it could have been alphabetical. I now live in the Derbyshire countryside (currently complete with flooding and snow) and my daughter attended a small school where there were not enough children to have single age classes.
You were lucky to get lessons on cars, we didn't get anything like that. Having been in education and having a cynical mind my guess is that he had a class to cover and hadn't prepared anything; although there wasn't the same attitude towards the syllabus in those days (I suppose there was a syllabus?).
I have vivid memories of the mulberry tree. Knowing now that the berries are edible, all that sticky mess was a terrible waste. I remember sliding towards that tree on a strip of polished ice, falling over and biting the playground. My tooth was loose for the rest of the day and still sits behind its neighbours. Looking on Google Earth, that tree is long gone. A couple of other vivid memories: I remember the whole school being taken outside to see a balloon going over and there was a wood-yard that stretched between the High Street and the playground wall that occasionally caught fire.
I lived in Woodville Road and if pushed, could get into school on time by leaving home when the bell sounded, around the corner into Buxton Road (past the sweetshop and the shop with the rather shifty looking men, that later became legal as a betting shop) and then a mad dash up Apsley Road and into the back entrance. Looking at Google Earth, the school has expanded over Apsley Road and my old house now backs onto the grounds. That would have been useful.
I don't think Walthamstow was very multicultural in those days. To be honest, the only non-white face I remember at all was a sikh boy that moved to my secondary school in around 1962. He had hardly moved in when he was expelled for brandishing his cultural knife. In London, there was also Prince Monalulu ("I gotta hoss!").
Do you remember the old power station behind Hoe Street Station? I have a vague memory of walking along Selbourne Road past large wooden structures that must have been cooling towers. Half of the Rec park there seems now to have been lost to a bus station. There was a wonderfully dangerous device in the lost half that was like a cone with a bench seat around the edge. It rotated and swung and would definitely have been condemned in the current climate. It was great.
I spent quite a lot of time pouring over government surplus junk in a shop along St Mary Road; can't remember the name of the shop. I still have some of that junk.
Can I ask a favour? I spent some time thinking about those memories that I put in my posting, but didn't keep a copy. Could you send me a copy of the email you received please? Assuming you haven't deleted it.
Thanks for the opportunity to pick over the past - feel free to continue the conversation!


Hi Daniel,
I'm looking for general information regarding our Car Showroom. We have just finished a whole new showroom and have been talking about what was there before us from years gone by. We have heard different stories and would like to do a story which will be on show in the showroom on how the showroom has progressed but, most importantly, what was here from say 1870 to date. Was there a house here, a shop or just open land (we are 65/71 Hoe Street). We did find some old chemist bottles when we were digging and we have kept these for show. If you have anything it would be lovely to know
Thank you


From Daniel: I hope some of our visitors can provide Debbie with useful info.

Hi Daniel,
I note your new listing of local bands. I draw your attention to one of the early bands: "The Y′s Guys". They flourished between 1964-67.
Five members:
Paul Wellman - lead guitar
John Austin - base guitar
Ron - rhythm guitar
Ray Paris - drums
Alan - vocals

From memory: they won the "East London Beat Contest" - or something like that- in 1967. They were to make a demo disc as a result. But the band disbanded, as schooldays were ending, and all were in that 17-19 age group, and needed to go and find a job in the real world. I think Ray on the drums became a successful session musician in later years.


From Daniel: Many thanks, Terry! The WF Groups page has been adequately amended.

My grandmother Rosena Powis was one of those who was injured when the roof of Walthamstow dog stadium roof collapsed, when Winston Churchill was going to give a speech. Can anybody shed any light on this incident?
Many thanks


Dear Graham / Daniel
I have just seen your 2019 comments on Mission Grove School.
I must confess, I do not remember you, but you would have been one year ahead of me.
However your reflections have brought the memories flooding back.

Indeed , I recall Mr. Tollet, although headmaster, used to take the odd class for boys to show them how the internal combustion engine works. - we would all stand around his " Ford Prefect" car, with the bonnet lifted, while he explained the various parts of the engine (unless you were mechanically minded, at the age of 10-11, the excercise was lost on most of the boys).

I recall there was an old tree in the middle of the playground. It had a metal railing fence around it. I believe it was a mulberry tree. Each summer, there were ample “berries” squashed in the playground. Inevitably they were sticky, and made an awful mess when they got stuck to the sole of your shoes.

One poignant memory. In 1959 or 60 I recall Mr Potter introducing to the class a newly arrived pupil from Mauritius. That was the first time I had met anyone from that part of the world. Probably a "first" for Mission Grove.

Like you, Graham, I have not been back to visit Walthamstow for around 50 years. Maybe one last trip down memory lane before it is to late is in store.


Hi my name is Dave Hughes and I remember 50+ years ago when I worked for The Evening News delivering to two Mackie shops. The first one was in Courtney Place/Mews, but the second one was in Billet Road between Durban and Kimberley Road.



I am in the midst of organising a reunion for members of our class, 1H-5H, 1962-1967. I am now in contact, or aware of, 19 of the 31 members of this class; 10 of us are meeting up in May 2020, with another 4 hoping to be able to make it there too. I would very much like to find a means of contacting the remaining 12 "girls". Would it be possible/suitable for me to list their names here, and firmly cross my fingers?
Many thanks

Laraine HAKE nee ORAM

Hi Daniel,
My partner′s uncle owned the fruit and veg stall David Digger Digby. With the passings and moving they have lost contact.
I know he would be mid 80s and had a partner called Rita and a sister called Peggy.
I was wondering if anyone knew or knows him if they wouldn't mind helping I would be gratefully pleased.
Many thanks, Tina x


I am in the Veteran Cycle Club, and remember Braysher's.


I was at McEntee tech 1957 to 1962. I was a classmate of Ted's for the last 2 years. I think you had a siddely car. Drawing office master was 'Taffy' Taylor. Taffy used to say ‘I promise to get you through the exam if you work” (best said with a welsh accent). He used to mark drawings too high (I think he would have given 15 OUT OF 20 for a blank sheet of paper!)
MO BROOKS,DAVIS,EVIL SMELLING GELLING (refers to the chemical smells he concocted and unleashed into the corridor for during the breaks), Kingston, d e Smith(french), the oat crunchie man (biology), hare metalwork, maggie palmer(english) were other Teachers.
Les Barrell (a pupil) died young. I met Peter Nice a few years ago. Incidentally, I am the less intelligent of the 2 Peter Edwards in our year.
Best wishes to all


A long shot - does any-one know of my ancestors the Raffe family who lived at 61 Turner Road in the 1911 census. They were still there in 1914. Frank Ernest was my great grandfather his wife was Anna Louise and she was Swiss apparently with broken English. Frank was born in Suffolk but came to Walthamstow via Birmingham and Glasgow! his occupation was in hosiery or outfitting (shop). He upped and left the family in 1914 for Canada- I'd like to know why?! And why did my grandfather Edward change his name from Edward Treschler (many spellings) Raffe to Edward Thomas Lee? What I'd really love is some photo's of the family to show my father as he didn't know anything about them.Anything would be amazing, thanks.

Diana LEE

Hi, I saw an article about E.N. Bray by Bill Bayliss and wondered if he wanted any more info. The article mentioned very briefly the end of the company in 1987, but it didn't shut then. It went on for quite a while and if he is interested in the rest of the story I can be contacted on this e-mail address.


From Daniel: Very sadly, our dear friend and prolific contributor Bill Bayliss passed away in December 2017. However, any further information you may provide on E.N. Bray is welcome!

Hi, have you anything or photos on the Lorraine Club in the late 1960s to 1970s? It was at the Royal Forest Hotel


I attended Warwick Girls School 1959/1964 as Heather Bell. Miss Hubbard was Head Mistress. I enjoyed my time there and was a prefect in the fifth year. I am still in touch with some pupils.

Heather HATTON

Hi There, I am looking for any info on the MACKIE FAMILY, who owned two newsagents shops in Walthamstow between 1950s-1980s approx.
Violet M Mackie operated the newsagents in Courtenay Place, where the back of Sainsburys was eventaually built. I remember an umbrella shop across Courtenay Place!
Mrs Mackie lived above the newsagent shop and had a labrador called "Lad"...
Ernest Mackie had a newsagensts on Blackhorse Road and lived in Carrisbrooke Road, just off the High St.
I am a direct descendent of this family and also related to the Coats Family , Leslie and Eileen (Violet Mackie's daughter), who lived at 63 Chester Road.
Anyone with any info on my relatives?
I would be very grateful for any.



Can anyone inform me when the late Councillor JACK HENDON passed away, as my niece (who is doing Open Uni Degree) has asked me for the information, as Jack was known in my family as Uncle Jack.
Yours Ken



Dear Friends, Followers & occasional Visitors,

  ... and Welcome back again to a fresh new year!
My personal best wishes to you all!

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

  Enjoy browsing your site & kindest regards

Do any past members of The Lone Parent Association still live in Waltham Forest? The group was sent up by Janet Saad and myself, Dave Hughes in the 1980s and it would be nice to see how members are now.


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