The Craxford Family Magazine Red Pages

{$text['mgr_red1']} Letters

Page 8. Letters to the Editor (The RED Pages)

Trusted Scribe

Janice Binley, Northamptonshire, UK
Robert Birch, UK
Maureen Bird, Hemel Hempstead, UK
Roger Buxton, UK
Stuart Cook, New Jersey, USA
Terry Dixon, UK
Keith Frisby, Pennsylvania, USA
Peter Hammond, UK
Harriette Jensen, California, USA
Margaret Lodge, Canada
Maureen McIntyre, London, UK
Ian Mercer, Romford UK
Christine Myers, Australia
Libby Orme, Norfolk, UK
Carolyn Paisley, British Columbia, Canada
Joe Rhea, USA
Geoff Searle, UK
Jim Smith, Thornton, Leicester
Pete Smith, Leicester UK
Phil Stone, UK


C Myers

Christine Myers

Thank you for taking the time to respond to my message left in your Guest Book, I had not yet discovered your story "Craxford Lane: A Genealogy". What a goldmine of information - you have solved a long time family query, of where in Gretton was Anne Morris's home "The Lawn". It was noted in the lengthy obituary of William Tee Boon in 1906, and vaguely remembered by an older relative who has now long passed. I think in family memory the house became bigger and grander than it probably was. At some point it was said to be a student's hostel.

I was particularly interested in reading the article about George Cox (REV. GEORGE D. COX (1849 - 1929)) being inspired by Spurgeon's words. Referring again to William TeeBoon's obituary which is lengthy and gives a lot of information about him, one snippet is "His religious life might be described as an evangelical Church man. He also found a great delight in reading Spurgeon's sermons and eagerly anticipated the call of the weekly visitor who brought him a fresh sermon for his Sunday afternoon reading". It also appears that many of William's mourners were neighbours: a whole contingent of the Warren family, a Mr Barwell and Mrs Almond among many other names not listed in your research. You have also provided a little more clarity on how many of the Boon's (TeeBoon's) fit together as over the many years I have been paddling at my family research, I spent hours going through various census records getting very confused with all the families with almost the same collection of names. Your comments on the merging of the Tees and Boons seems sensible and has been a long held family theory.

Fortunately I was provided a document prepared by my mother's cousin who was born in 1907 giving me a fairly good ground work to my direct line some taken from a family bible by her Mother. It started with Thomas TeeBoon and his wife Mary (no surname) but from your work I now know it is Fox (which probably explains why the family has/had an oil painting of a lady called Elizabeth Fox - who I have now worked out was Mary's sister) In hindsight I don't think I was thinking laterally enough on name searching, kept getting put off by not turning up TeeBoon, should have just been looking for Boon. A wonderful tool hindsight!

I also agree with you that a story is more interesting that endless family trees, this is in fact why I am now re-visiting all my family research trying to cobble together some stories to leave on my family history rather than a pile of folders with endless charts and bits and pieces. Like you there is no connection now with the village of Gretton, sadly many my TeeBoon lines have died out.

I noted particularly Paragraph 89: Morris in the article. I think Ann Morris and my Great Grandfather Robert TeeBoon were probably fairly close, Robert was 3 years old when his mother died and Ann was 18 so probably assumed the mother role, I have a striking studio photo of the pair of them together.

By the way, I don't think my husband is related to the Gretton Myers family - though I must admit to not knowing the origins of his line. They have been in Australia for a long time - possibly a convict there somewhere!

Christine Myers, Australia
November 27th 2021


Roger Buxton

Roger Buxton

I have been fascinated by the accounts on your website of growing up in the West End of Leicester. Although I grew up in Fleckney, my mother and aunt knew the area very well and would tell me lots of stories about living there, and also the Wharf Street area. Life was much the same for us in Fleckney but of course much quieter; Uncle Jim (James Gilbert) used to say that it was too quiet in the countryside, he liked to walk out to the hustle and bustle of the Aylestone Road. Although there were hosiery factories in the village (opened in the 19th century in some case to beat strikes in Leicester) we were very close to open countryside, in our case at the top of the street. My maternal grandfather who had lived in Leicester, said that one big difference was how nosy people were in Fleckney, he used to say that you couldn't walk down the street wearing a new hat but that the net curtains would twitch. Also village people in those pre-internet days were quite unused to outsiders. My paternal grandfather came from Nottingham, and even when he had lived there about 30 years, his next-door neighbour still referred to him as "a foreigner". My mother in particular told me how she found the transition of moving from Leicester to live and work in factory in Fleckney as rather difficult, she greatly missed the "lovely lot of girls she worked with in Leicester at the Abbey Meadow Mills, and missed going up town to the Clock Tower and all the shops". On the other hand, she and my father loved to cycle along the Leicestershire lanes from Fleckney, especially to the Laughton Hills, surely the 1930s were a golden age for cycling, with tarmacked roads but hardly any traffic.

I was interested to read about you going to Alderman Newton's. For us the big hurdle in those days was actually passing the 11+ exam but this was quite difficult to achieve. Out of our class of 36 taking the exam, only 7 of us went on the local grammar school, Kibworth Beauchamp Grammar School, a very ancient establishment reputedly founded about 1410, and now relocated to Oadby as the Beauchamp College.

Roger Buxton, UK
October 3rd 2020


Terry Dixon

Terry Dixon

I spent hours looking through your website completely engrossed. I've also spent many hours reading and digesting this absorbing article. I have been doing my family tree for quite some years now and I am the great grandson of William Liquorish and Lucy Craxford. Of my four grandparents I have managed to get back to 1570 for the Dixons, 1801 for the Starsmores, 1674 with the Binleys and 1736 for the Liquorishs respectively. I also followed another line, the Townsin family, back to 1820. I do realise that does make five but that is because one of the great grandparents weren't married. I grew up in Cottingham and lived there until I got married in 1984. I still have relatives there, my brother and brother-in-law still live at the top end of the village.

I've updated a few details on my own tree, if the details in the article are verified to be true I had about 4 dates wrong by one year. I am in the picture of Eric and Brenda's wedding so you know my link in all this. I am the pageboy at the front of the photograph in column 2 of the article. John Albert Binley Townsin and Edith Julia Liquorish were my grandparents and their daughter Audrey was my mum.

What a great site and thanks for the wonderful experience.

Terry Dixon, UK
August 8th 2020


I read the article with interest, particularly noting Footnote 2: Parsonage House: Connection or coincidence and your supposed relationship between the Tansley girls and the Bull family. I have been researching my family tree for nearly 40 years now and I believe the following account is correct. The Bull family originated in Cubley, Derbyshire. John Bull senior married my direct ancestor, Elizabeth Moseley (nee Goodall) after the death of her first husband and they had 4 children, one being John who was baptised at Cubley in 1777 (who was the father of Thomas, the curate of Corby). John Bull, the son, was graduated from Cambridge and first became curate in Sutton in Ashfield in Nottinghamshire. Both John senior and Elizabeth were buried in Sutton (which I did confirm when I visited there).

Rev John Bull was married twice and moved around the country quite frequently. He married his first wife, Elizabeth Wrathall, in Sutton in Ashfield whilst he was Curate there and I presume that she was from there as well but I haven't found a birth place for her. His parents were living there when he would have left to study at university but again I'm unsure how they would have afforded this - I think he might have had a benefactor of some kind. Rev John's Moseley relations are interesting as some ended up in Wales on farms that were associated with Howell Harris who helped the younger sons of Methodist farmers establish themselves there. John and Elizabeth had fourteen children: two in St Paul's Cray, Kent; six - including Thomas born in 1808 - in Downe, Kent; four in Leicester - including George born in 1815 who became a doctor; and two in Clipston. John is certainly the father of the Wrathall Bulls of Australia as they continued the name of his first wife. John Wrathall Bull is interesting and you should google him with date of death and you can read about his life in Australia and confirms who his father was.

Rev John Bull married Eliza Martha Goodall in Leicester in 1839 where he gave his father as John Bull, Farmer and he was Clerk of Clipston. John's second wife was from Leicester so I presume he met her when he was there and married her after his first died at Clipston. His second wife was not poor as her father left her £2500 when he died in the 1820's. When John died his will only mentions his second wife which is a little annoying but I think any money will have come from the Wrathall family through his first marriage. I have often wondered how a farmer's son became a vicar and also 'worried' a little as the Moseleys were staunch Methodists and Wesley is reputed to have preached in the field behind John's half brother's farmhouse. I'm quite surprised from the above that John had time to preach!!

Libby Orme, Norfolk, UK
June 1st 2019


Geoff Searle

Geoff Searle

I have been browsing your website and love your Leicester 7 page. This is exactly the sort of content that I am looking to include in my own. I remember family holdays with board games, TV adverts like "Now hands that do dishes", Watch With Mother etc, the list is endless. I was and still am a big fan of Gerry Anderson, I met him once at a seminar that he did.


Model of platform machine

I remember black and white TV on 405 lines !! As a child in the summer holiday we used to go and see my cousins who lived in Cheltenham. We would buy a platform ticket and sit train spotting. On the platform there would be a big green cast iron machine with a pointer and letters and numbers around the outside. For the price of a penny or two you could print your name or anything on a small aluminium strip. A bit like a dymo label. I can't remember who told me now but in the 1960's bored houswives having extra marital affairs would put a packet of OMO in the kitchen window as a signal that the coast was clear, that the Old Man was Out!

It's funny how things stick in your mind. I just feel it is so important to pass my childhood memories on to my children before they are lost in time. Thankfully we are better able to record them than we were in the past. It may be a bit sentimental; maybe its my age and a realisation that more of my life has happened than is yet to happen?

By the way: Not very good on the quiz. Only got 2 (Q6 and Q8) right!!

If of interest, our own family history website, also written using TNG (The Next Generation of Genealogy Sitebuilding), can be found here: The Serle Family History

Geoff Searle, UK
March 5th 2017


My father, Walter Fredrick Birch, has just past away having worked in the latter part of his career at Denroy Plastics in Bangor Northern Ireland. I'm sure you will understand that our family whilst grieving his loss are also reflecting upon his life.

We know he worked at the Craxfords Duplex Works (where he would have been known as Wally) as a Draftsman during the 60s and indeed I visited the factory living just around the corner ourselves at 9 Haine Road. I believe he continued working there when it became Viking Industrial Plastics. I recognize many of the products shown on your website, projects which I'm sure my father was involved. He and my mother Peggy attended the works dinner dances and I wonder if you or readers of this page have any information / memorabilia, photographs or drawings connected with my Father.

Robert Birch, UK
December 6th 2012


New Bow Bridge plaque

The 2005 Bow Bridge plaque © PT Stone

What a lot of information on your site - wow! I could almost imagine I was in old Leicester.

Your section on King Richard looks very fair, though I cannot answer your question about his route out of the city. Are you aware that there is a second plaque now, alongside the Broadbent one, advising that the story of the bones being thrown in the Soar is just that, a story? It was put up about 8 - 10 years ago. I can't remember exactly when, though I was there when it was unveiled by one of Broadbent's descendants. Attached is a photograph I took which feel free to use.

Dr Phil Stone. Chairman, Richard III Society. UK
March 31st 2014


I congratulate you on your web site. It is apparent that you have put a lot of work into it and I enjoyed looking at the maps.

I agree that it is a puzzle how the (or a) road from Bow Bridge led to the Foss Way but I think there must have been such a road since there is no suggestion that Richard used any other bridge and the story that he did use it starts not too long after the battle.

I think that it is really one of those questions without a satisfactory answer. So far as I know there is no evidence to say what road Richard took to Bosworth. He must have got on to the Foss way at some point because this would be the quickest route to Atherstone where he knew Henry Tudor was camped. None of the chroniclers bother to say how he got to the Foss Way though.

I agree with you too that it is a puzzle where Richard put his army while he was in Leicester. It would be a guess whatever we say, several thousand troops plus many horses occupy a lot of space, so I think that it must have been outside the city.

Peter Hammond, Richard III Society. UK
March 31st 2014


Janice Binley

Janice Binley

This updated article is wonderful. Not only is it a trip down memory lane for all of us I should think - of a bygone era - reminding us of how life was in the not too distant past and of aromas and remembered characters of our passage to adulthood. You have also weaved in the ancient history well, leading us back again to the present.

For some reason I am humming Cathy's Clown to myself and Shorty Cut Across (Eddie Cochran) and I may have to dash down to the shop at lunchtime to see if I can get a small pork pie to have for my lunch with brown sauce and a nice bread roll because I can smell it!! I can also smell the linseed oil which was used to treat our Co-op counter and see Fred King (the Manager) in his white coat slicing bacon and weighing up sugar into blue bags. Potatoes and paraffin were kept in an outbuilding out the back and the smell of earth from the potatoes mixing with paraffin fumes is unforgettable.

I laughed out loud about your experiences with the barber's shop and Brenda's experience in the chemists. It reminded me of a friend's brother who must have often come across 'a Brenda' in the chemists and went home with things like toothpaste, toilet soap and shampoo. His mum couldn't understand it!!

Janice Binley, Northamptonshire, UK
March 31st 2014


STU Cook

Stuart Cook

I found all three articles very interesting - you certainly do have a vivid recollection of your neighborhood. Made me smile and remind me of my own past. My home town was Hunstanton in north Norfolk. We lived at the top end of Westgate Road just a quarter of a mile from the ocean.

I also used to take the 'Eagle' comic and read the exploits of Dan Dare - also used to take the 'Beano' and 'The Dandy'. On Saturday mornings we used to also go down the hill from us to the local cinema and watch 'Flash Gordon' and 'Tom and Jerry' - cost was the same to us as it was for you - 6d, unless you wanted to sit upstairs in the balcony in which case it was 9d. I'll never forget, when the credits came up showing Fred Quimby's name after the Tom and Jerry cartoon, everyone in the cinema shouted, "Good ole Fred"! I think one of the parents started that and it just kept going.

Your recollections of the sweet shops were similar to mine. One of the sweet shop was diagonally across from my fathers garage business and called Carr's, the other was on the corner of the High Street and was called Abb's - it was also the tobacconist. My most vivid memory was when sweets came off ration - I think in 1953. We used to take our pocket money, which I think was 2s 6d, to buy our favorite sweets and a bottle of Corona or Vimto, then in the evening watch the TV whilst gobbling our hoard.

I did not have a paper delivery route but I was a green grocers delivery boy. Every day after school and on Saturdays I used to ride that trade bike all over town, up and down the hill, with boxes and bags of deliveries in both front and back carriers - not that easy starting off going up hill. When the grocery store changed hands and the new owner did not want to pay me the same amount I went to the local butcher and became a delivery boy for them - much easier work for the same pay. I think I used to get 12s or 15s a week. To this day, due to being a delivery boy, I remember just about every street in the town.

Anyway, I enjoyed your articles and could almost imagine myself being there. They certainly caused my old gray matter to move about quite a bit and reminded me a lot of what I used to get up to in my own home town all those years ago.

Stuart Cook, New Jersey, USA
April 10th 2014


I have greatly enjoyed your Fosse Road webpages and photos (and I got much of the quiz right too!). I am writing to ask if you might possibly have any image that includes the girls' orphanage/primary school near the old junction with King Dick's Rd - it was across the road from where you lived; the address was 7 Fosse Road Central.

My mum and her sister lived there in the 1920s. Aunt Dorothy is still alive and has asked me if I can try to find a photo of the house. It was in a big plot of land - you can see it easily in the little map on your website. Now the site is covered over by the edge of the dual carriageway and grass and tree margins next to the end of the red brick terraced house by the SW corner of the new King Dick's Road / Fosse Rd junction.

Dorothy has a vivid memory of people and names: there was a Doctor David Smith at the corner of Arundel St. opposite the orphanage: his wife not only smoked cigarettes in a long holder but rode a motorbike! Did the girls love her!! The girls would have walked in a crocodile every day past your house on their way to Mantle Road School. They went to the church right by your place, and also walked to the Cathedral, in Sunday Best of course - panama hats with white ribbons.

I have searched on line, also the Council and planning records, the Library and two days of poring over stuff in the county records office, and not a sign of a record of the place, let alone a picture. The trade directories show it was in existence for a surprisingly long period, having moved there from central Leicester in 1862, to at least 1938. I have a list of the Board of Governors from mum's jottings and from Dorothy, and I am contacting one of their descendants also. Miss Alice Plunkett was their matron: I have a photo of her at mum's wedding in 1936.

If you have any image of No 7, or can provide me with any slight lead towards further information, we would be really delighted.

Ian Mercer. Romford, Essex
January 23rd 2006


This is a great article on the Fosse Road and Newfound Pool area of Leicester. My son, Benjamin, and I are last of the Frisby Lineage and I would dearly love to do a similar project on our family, but sadly it is the same old story that of time, time, time. We moved to the area when I was just a baby in 1962. Mum and Dad purchased the house, which was at the very bottom of Pool Road, from my Aunt for the hefty sum of £ 650. I myself lived there continuously, along with my parents and sister until I immigrated to the USA to marry in 1999.

I attended Inglehurst Infants School to start with and then later the Junior School. I was not lucky enough to pass the 11+ and ended up doing my secondary education at Fosse Secondary on Mantle Road. Times were hard and the schools were kind of rough by today's standards, but we just made the best of it. The fact that we never had an inside toilet at home was just accepted and never even questioned. My best memories are walking the area with my father and collie dog and looking at all those wonderful shops on Beatrice, Tudor and King Richards Roads. Sadly, many of these shops are now gone or are in decay. My mother and father did attend Fosse Road North Methodist Church for many years.

There are now a number of Facebook Groups dedicated to certain institutions of the area that other readers may like to look at. Everyone is welcome to join and share their memories.

The Fosse Cinema Group
The Fosse Seconday School Group
Inglehurst Infants and Junior School Group
Fosse Road North Methodist Church Group

Keith Frisby, Pennsylvania, USA
May 15th 2014


Margaret Blackwell

Margaret Blackwell

I've just had a look at the web site and "358 Fosse" - you have done a bit of work on it since I last looked.

I too did a tour of the old sites in September 2004. This was for Mum and especially Dad - his short time memory was fading fast, yet his long term was still intact (normal for dementia) - and digital cameras are great for this. Son Matthew then made them all into a video to bring back memories of their life there. Dad's house still stands, but not Mum's. Their old church has gone too and their last house was for sale. Anyway they had a trip down memory lane but as you mentioned somehow there's a look of despair not just in our neighbourhoods but in Leicester in general. Nothing looked 'healthy'. Maybe it's our association with North America where sun and light abounds. Even here with winter it is nearly always sunny - freezing cold maybe (-20C is common) and deep in snow but sunny.

I always thought your house was 3-storey model and MUCH bigger than it looks. Mum even commented that she thought your house was 3 storeys. Did you have an attic? (No, but the ceiling over the hall and staircase was high - about twelve feet up, I guess - NF) You were the posh people on the hill especially with that lounge. And I remember the wood toilet bench upstairs; such a wide toilet that you could sit and read in if you wanted to. I also remember the very long dining room. Didn't know tables came that long either. I also remember one of my first kisses at your birthday parties (Postman's Knock!) and the many games that meant having the lights out!

I remember Ann Letts - she visited us in Canada in the early 70s when she lived in Toronto for a year - are you still in touch with her? she was my first visual of the 'mini' - Canada was a little late, or at least Ottawa was a bit conservative - and everyone would stop and stare at her legs!

You also mentioned a chocolate bar ('FRY'S five boys') that I didn't really recall. My friend here did (she's originally from Sheffield). In fact it was only yesterday when I'd bought her her favourite Fry's chocolate cream (we find those occasionally), that she mentioned this bar - small world to hear about it twice in two days. I couldn't find it on the web as you'd called it five five boys (Sorry, now corrected - NF). When I realised it's FRY's five boys I came across the following link
Lindsay Poulton; the face on the FRY'S Five Boys Chocolate Bar

Thanks for the memories. No wonder I still like Fox's. We can get Walkers crisps here in a few 'specialty' shops but not Fox's.

Margaret Lodge (nee Blackwell) Canada
November 21st 2005


I have often wondered if the old firm Caribonum still existed, So, imagine my surprise on asking Google when my old pal George (Craxford) appeared. We used to work out of the Princess Road office along with Ted Norman and Stan Clarke. Sadly he is no longer with us in the case of Ted - I am not sure about Stan. At 75 I am still working on Thornton Nurseries, but have lots of time off! Nita and I have a trip planned up the Amazon next year. All the best with your super site. I just felt I had to drop you a line to say 'Hello'.

Jim Smith. Thornton, Leicester
December 26th 2006


The article was of great interest to me. I have the most extensive historical notes and genealogy on the Bedells of Essex in the United States, and hope to publish it as a series of ebooks in 2017. My wife, Mary Ellen (Bedell) Rhea is descended from the Bedells of Essex. Her father was Erwin George Bedell and a descendant of the earliest of the Bedells of Essex to settle in the American colonies, Robert Bedell. Robert was a minor son of John Bedell of Fairstead, Essex, England, and his grandfather was John Bedell of Black Notley, Essex, England. Thomas Bedyle of Black Notley who died after 16 September 1550 (married Johan Sache) was the shared common ancestor of the Bedells of Fairstead and the Bedells of Black Notley. A grandson of Thomas and Johan was William Bedell (born about 25 Dec 1571 - died 7 Feb 1642), who was the noted Bishop of Kilmore, Ireland. What fascinates me most about your article is the pictures of George Sinclair Biddall you included at the end of the article's section on The Croxton Conundrum. The short rounded stature, the narrow distance between the eyes, the outsized nose, and the receding two-sided hairline are physical characteristics of the Bedells down through the centuries. My wife's father bore a striking resemblance to your George Sinclair Biddall. The earliest mention of these distinctive characteristics occurred in England in the early 13th century, and traces the origin of the Bedells to emigration from France to about that time.

My time this year is pretty much consumed with publishing the history and genealogy of my Ray-Rhea family. My first book on my Ray-Rhea family was published in 1969 after ten years of research. That one book of 385 pages has grown over the years to its present state of three volumes and over 14,000 descendants of John and Hannah (Hasty) Ray of Ireland, a poor Scots-Irish Presbyterian family. We printed out over 15 years ago the last trial printing of my database on the Bedells of Essex, and at that time it took 10 volumes. My expectation is the publication next year will be double that number of volumes. While I serve as the compiler, the work on my Ray-Rhea family and the work on the Bedells of Essex is the product of many historians and genealogists who have consented to be included and properly credited in the text and in footnotes for their contributions to my compilation.

As a side note, the Bedells who settled and actually laid out and designed the original town, were Loyalist descendants of Robert Bedell, the early Bedell of Essex settler in the American colonies.

Joe Rhea, USA
April 22nd 2016


Maureen Bird

Maureen Bird

A few lines to say that I've really enjoyed reading your latest article and all its reminiscences. Various thoughts came to my mind as I read your words.

Jelly for birthday parties you say. Lucky you say I! I have to tell you that in the war years, when I was a child, jellies were rationed or in short supply, I can't remember which and a family only had one or two per year. If, as a child, you had an invitation to a party, one or two mothers would send a jelly along, if they had one, so that there was enough. Hardly seems possible does it?

Our house in St. Helens was a modern semi, but like yours had a lounge (only used at Christmas) , a dining/living room, a kitchen (nowadays it would be called a breakfast room) and a scullery (now called a kitchen). The back door was in the scullery and outside this was a square piece of concrete which Mum used to pumice-stone every Monday after she'd done the washing, and I had to jump over it so's not to get it dirty!

In the kitchen we had a Triplex kitchen range exactly the same as your photo, and an airer. We called ours an airer, although some folk in other parts of the country called them 'maidens' or pulleys. I have several wonderful memories that relate to the kitchen range. Somewhere along the line, probably Christmas, I was given a tin of Cadbury's chocolate buttons. As a small child I remember they were absolute bliss. Heavens knows where they came from because they would have been a rare commodity. At the time they were in a purple tin in the shape of a milk churn and Mum used to keep it on the shelf on the top of the range where I couldn't reach!! I was only allowed a few each day. She used also to put potatoes in the ashes under the fire to bake. Wonderful baked potatoes which sometimes were burnt. Another thing she used to do, which I realise now is dangerous, but she used to carry a shovel full of hot coals from the kitchen to the dining/living room to make the fire in that room. Apparently this was to make the job of making a fire much quicker than doing it from scratch. Our range was black enamelled which Mum used to polish up regularly. A labour of love I feel.

Having read your piece about Brenda dashing off to her cold bedroom. I have wonderful childhood memories of colourful knitted and crocheted blankets that my grandmothers made with all the oddments of wool that they collected. On the really cold winter nights I remember being wrapped up in these wonderful blankets and put into bed, all snug and warm.

Seeing the picture of the Reckitts Blue Bag reminds me that when I was first married I used to "blue" all my table cloths, pillowslips and Colin's white shirts. In those days he used to wear detached collars and these and the double cuffs on the shirts, and the pillowslips and table cloths then used to be starched. Such memories.

It's fun going back to see your old home. A month or so ago I went back to see the house and area around where we used to live in Birmingham, (after we left St. Helens). Amazingly it really hadn't altered very much at all. It was a nice part of Birmingham all those years ago, and it's still quite nice now.

Well, that's enough reminiscing for now. I look forward to reading whatever comes next.

Maureen Bird (nee Craxford), Hemel Hempstead, UK
September 10th 2005


I`m writing on behalf of my wife Val (nee Manship) who went to school with your sister Brenda. (Val doesn`t have too much interest in computers so I`ve been given the task of replying!) She doesn`t have many clear memories from long ago but appreciates all the names and date you have listed with the photo on Friends Reunited which certainly helps. Yes, the photo must be from Mantle Road if your dad says so. She also went to Ingle Street Junior at some stage before returning to Mantle Road for her Secondary years. .She can now recall quite a few of the names and faces on this photo including your sister. Brenda

Val used to live at 7 Battenberg Road just around the corner from Mantle Road School. She still keeps in regular touch with a couple of girls from her schooldays especially Sally Wesson. Does your sister remember Sally?

Interestingly, I thought that your name rang a bell from the distant past and viewing your excellent website I see that you were a neighbour in Fosse Road North of one of my girl-friends from long ago, the lovely Ann Letts. Needless to say at the time I was madly in love with Ann . Unfortunately (for me!) she was still madly in love with Dave Zanker who was a previous boyfriend who fell out with her. This meant our relationship was doomed to fail....which it did after around 6-9 months or so. I used to go to the same school as Dave (City Boys) and I met him at a reunion a few years ago and we had a good chuckle remembering those "anguished times !" He confessed that his feelings for poor old Ann were never as strong as she thought. The dilemma of teenage love!

I often wondered what happened to Ann as the only time I`ve ever seen her since then was in the late 1960s when I bumped into her at her place of work, the old Electricity Showrooms in town.

Many of my mates were from the Tudor Road /Newfoundpool area and so we spent most of our spare time on Fosse Park playing football and cricket (depending on the time of year). We also frequented the various local youth clubs (for the girls and music) including St Pauls and the Catholic St Peters, and as we got older, the Empire Hotel public house. I first knew Val during those times in the early 1960s, however we didn`t start courting (a lovely old fashioned phrase !) until much later, eventually getting married in 1968. We now have 1 girl, 2 boys and are still married.

Happy days from long ago.

Pete Smith, Groby, Leicester
October 1st 2005


Carolyn Paisley

Carolyn Paisley

The walk down Memory Lane is different for you, isn't it? It reads very well, though. Your memory serves you well. I don't think I was exposed to shopping trips like that. We had old converted buses come round our way: a greengrocers, a butcher's and a fishmonger (I bet that was pongy on a hot day.) The baker and milkman had more up-to-date vans. We were a long way from shops where we lived off Uppingham Road, so I suppose that's why they came to us. I can't remember the co-op, but for some reason I remember my mother's co-op number, which is now my password on my library card! I see you don't have dab and suckers on your list, but that's what we all went wild for (the lollipop ones, not the nasty liquorice in a tube ones.)

Hmm, now what was my first record? I think it might have been Helen Shapiro's You don't know. I don't remember yours, but I thought we were the same age. That annoying Playmates song. For a start, I thought it was Seven Little Girls, Sitting in the Back Seat, hugging and a kissing with Fred... Do you remember that one? But I checked the Playmates out on Google and it's something called the Beep Beep Song. I remember it now. And yes, I think it's even worse than Seven Little Girls Sitting in the Back Seat. It's close, though!. That was a great idea putting the quiz questions interspersed throughout the text. We oldies do like reminiscing about the 50s and 60s!

Carolyn Paisley, British Columbia, Canada
March 31st 2014


I have read with much interest your family's website. I walked along all three parts of Fosse Road regularly as a child and the website has brought back many memories.

If I remember correctly the horses from the Glenfield Road Co op Dairy were stabled in Battenberg Road or a neighbouring road. The milkmen walked the unharnessed horses from the Glenfield Road Dairy along Henley Road across Fosse Road North and into Battenberg Road. They could be seen walking the horses back to the stables shortly after lunch when their shift ended. Perhaps some of your other contributors may recall these men and their horses taking this route. The Co op Dairy kept horses for milk deliveries long after Kirby and West had changed to electric milk floats.

Your site reminded me that the names of the roads in Newfoundpool spell HARRISON. However, Ingle Street is the first road in the acrostick and so they spell I HARRISON for Isaac Harrison who erected the building that is now the Empire Hotel. It was firstly a spa and then a private house for the Harrison family. The original entrance is in Newport Street and is really much grander than the Fosse Road North entrance.

Please let me know if any of your contributors remembers the White House School in Stephenson's Drive. I can find no record of it now at all. It was an attractive building surrounded by trees and was towards the top end of Stephenson's Drive furthest away from Fosse Road North on the right hand side. My brother attended this school before going to Ingle Street Juniors.

Maureen McIntyre, London
February 20th 2011


After reading the postings on the TNG list, I took a look at your site. Loved it! I especially loved the Ipse Dixit idea and the picture of the road sign. I have had cousins ask me what information I want from them and usually send them a group sheet form with the note to add anything they want people to know about them. However, most people are really intimidated by the freedom of that and your idea of a few pertinent questions is a good one.

My Hoisingtons seem to have had a number of things named after them here in America (they were Horsingtons in England)...mountains, lakes, roads, schools. I keep running into them while doing google searches. Hoisington is my grandmother's maiden name and I am doing a one-name study on it. It might be interesting to create a page for all of them.

Harriette Jensen, Oakland, California
March 31st 2006


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Last update: November 29th 2021

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