For the first 24 years of my life I lived in Langford Crescent, Thundersley and attended both Thundersley Infant and Junior schools in Dark Lane from 1966 – 1972. I hope you enjoy my much treasured class photos and hopefully recognise yourselves in some of them. Apologies for my scruffy childhood writing on the back of the photos and for any mis-spelt names. Here are a few of my memories from those years.
Class teachers: Mrs Vipond (Infant School)
Miss Watson – she lived next door but one to me in Langford Crescent.
Mr Rattenbury, Mr Lees and Headmaster Mr Snowdon
My earliest memory of Infant School is making a card and tissue paper Easter basket in Miss Vipond’s class. We had milk in little bottles (mid-morning I think) I couldn’t drink it as it made me queasy and had to get a letter from the doctor to excuse me from having to drink mine.
The sponsored walk around the Junior school field to raise funds for the outdoor swimming pool and subsequently nearly freezing to death during swimming lessons.
Sports day – I hated it. The sack race, egg and spoon and running and skipping races.
Eating sandwiches in the classrooms at lunchtimes.
Singing my favourite hymn ‘All things bright and beautiful’ while writhing in agony from pins and needles from sitting crossed legged for too long on the floor in the hall during assembly.
Glockenspiel lessons from Mr Lees in the old demountable shed type classroom outside.
Singing in the choir and going on a trip to sing at a school in Hockley, conducted by Mr Lees
Skipping and hopscotch with my best friends Sarah Randall, Joanna Harris and Bev Carlin.
Kiss chase around the playground – most of the girls ‘loved’ and tried to catch Christopher G!
Walking home for lunch in later years sometimes with Bev and doing ‘apple turnovers’ over the metal bars down the alley next to the wool shop. Mr Pope was the school crossing patrol man for many years and we all respected and liked him very much. The wool shop was known as ‘Gwen’s’ in those days and I went there often with my Nan to buy wool for her latest knitting project. I liked the rustling sound the bags made and you could ‘put wool by’ in case you didn’t need it all. In the little sweet shop (with the steep steps) next door I liked to buy barley sugars with chocolate running through the middle and bon bons. I also remember Mr Trodd the greengrocer, Emmy in the fish shop, Ronnie Monk ( a well-known local character who lived on my road) and the Wiggins family who were friends of my Grandads.
The infant school fire and some pupils had to attend Westwood School in Hadleigh for a while.
Bonfire and sparklers on the field on 5th November.
Like most other children in those days I loved to spend most of my free time and weekends outside playing. I remember going to ‘Brickfields’ a lot with the Carlin family taking picnics and huge bottles of lemonade and cream soda bought from ‘The Corona man’ who delivered the delicious fizzy drinks in his lorry to our homes once a week. We ‘sailed ‘across the pond on huge rapidly sinking lumps of polystyrene catching tadpoles and newts in our nets and jam jars. I made little nature books of flora and fauna, carefully sticking my collections of seeds, leaves, bits of fur, bones and feathers onto my hand illustrated pages.
Another favourite place was the wooded area down Birches Road where we enjoyed the heady scent of thousands of bluebells in the spring and made dens and camps using the huge fern leaves.
Growing up in Thundersley when it was still very rural, wild wooded and pretty gave me the knowledge and huge respect for wildlife and nature that I have as an adult.
I’m sure there are many other special memories I have forgotten to include but I’m hoping you will add some comments and jog my memory further. Those were the days my friends……