Unfamiliar streets: Paddington 1959

This week we’re on an excursion across the Kensington and Chelsea border into new territory. I hope you’ll forgive this incursion into unfamiliar streets but when I came across these pictures, which came with a donation of papers, maps, photocopies and photographs. I was fascinated by them.  The late 1950s is a time which looks both familiar and alien to me as history overlaps with my my own timespan.

The locations themselves were not immediately familiar but the London of post war dilapidation and demolition was recognizable. A few street signs were visible so I gradually placed them in that area to the north and east of my home Borough on the far side of the Harrow Road. These streets in the old Borough of Paddington seemed like an alternative version of North Kensington.


This view reminds me of a section of Portobello Road. The curve to the left as the road goes up the hill. But that side street is Lord Hills Road in W2 not W11. I tried looking on Google Maps at the view today but couldn’t see any of these buildings.

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This busy corner is from that same sector of the former suburb which had grown up along the main line  into Paddington Station.


Behind the busy streets the process of demolition has begun. In this picture you see a first glimpse of a half byzantine half Gothic church which I saw in many of the pictures from different angles. I’m trying to avoid letting my imagination run away with me and put it into some kind of urban supernatural story.


In another kind of urban story, a kitchen sink drama or an angry young man a lone cyclist enters the construction zone where demolition has opened up a wide space.


And here’s another church backing onto an empty lot identified by these cryptic words: Lot 51 – basement to be demolished.


A small gang of boys go by. The sparse traffic enables them to walk down the middle of the street and claim it for themselves.


There’s the church again on the edge of the construction zone.


Bottom left,the sign of the Willett company, builders and developers (their headquarters in Sloane Square at this date)  on the edge of the site. A number 18 bus passes by along the Harrow Road going between Sudbury and the West End.


The whole church, looking as though it was perched above a series of catacombs.


It’s there again in a wider view. I can’t quite orientate myself in this picture in relation to the rest of the city but those chimneys on the horizon should provide a clue to someone.

A last glimpse at one of the side streets from this area. The abandoned car, which we’ve seen in other posts ten or more years later, was already a feature.

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And a final view of the church looking even more as if it was on the edge of a precipice about to fall to its destruction.21570024


I hope you haven’t minded visiting an area where I’m not much use as a guide. It’s an odd sensation for me feeling lost in an old photograph. That was part of the fascination. I know some of you aren’t limited by the same geographical boundaries as me so feel free to comment with your own identifications.

We’ll be back in our proper place next week.

229 responses to “Unfamiliar streets: Paddington 1959

  • Denise Betteridge

    Fascinating, but sad photos. Did the church survive?

    • Dave Walker

      As you can see from other comments the church has survived, in fact on Google Maps (search for Rowington Close W2) it looks much grander now it’s set in a housing estate and surrounding gardens.

    • Ann butler

      Yes it is on the Warwick estate near the Grand Union Canal

    • Rosemary Smith

      The church is St Mary Magdalene where my Mum &Dad were married in 1937 . Also my brother & I were christened. . The road to the right in the last big picture of the church is Clarendon Crescent (now demolished).The church survived & is currently under renovation

      • Anne Markham

        Thank you Rosemary, that’s interesting. Following renovation the Church will still accommodate worship and will also house a heritage, cultural and arts hub. The project (including renovation) is being funded by a stage 1 3.6 Lottery Grant (applications for stage 2 grant are underway). It is also supported by a group of volunteers, called “Heritage Pioneers” who will write reports and service the community hub.

    • gloria

      yes the church survived, i got married there in 1970, beautiful church, there is a very nice council estate there built early 1960s, called the warwick estate, the flats are now selling at £800.000, lovely area.

      • Peter Hewlett

        Sorry this is not a reply to Gloria.Just a sad note, That Terry Downes has passed on. A Paddington lad through and through.RIP.p.

      • Peter Hewlett

        Hi Gloria, I have to disagree, The houses were much more interesting back in the past, They had real character, restored they would have been worth millions each. The new estate is a planers dream, a thoughtless waste of a lot of building land.p.

      • gloria

        Hi Peter, i agree 100% the houses were far more interesting back in the past, i had many aunts and uncles living there, and the houses were in a right old state, what they replaced it with could’nt be compared with what was there previously, but as a council estate the warwick estate is a nice little estate, better than most.

      • Peter Hewlett

        The houses were condemned when we moved inback in the late thirties, and more people moved in after we were rehoused. My family were from that area on both sides. When I went to senior street school, The head mistress was a Miss willis, a bit of a toughie, I guess she had to be with us little buggers.School dinners were a life savers for most of the children that I knew.I was like a little Oliver Twist, Please miss can I have some more.They would usually capitulate, and give me a bit more, Thank God ! That might be the only meal for that day. It would depend if my dad had any work, or if those who had work done, actually paid the bill. Hard Times !!!

  • S Bays

    Poignant photos – thanks for sharing.

  • roll the dice`

    St Marys Magdalenes off senior street..still there..amazing photos…

  • Ken Macdonald

    Hi Dave,

    The church is St Mary Magdalene Church, (http://www.st-mary-magdalene.co.uk/), just next to the canal. That’s how I recognised it as I often walk along the towpath there.

    Fascinating post as always!

    • Dave Walker

      Thanks for your local knowledge on this one.

    • michael Bishop

      I have an old Black and White Photo of Magdalene’s; if I can sort it out I will see if I can post it etc.

    • Jacqueline Cowling was Dell

      Hi I am new to this blog, I used to live in West Bourne Square in the prefabs, and I went to Senior School, We left when they flattened the area, I wan born in 1946 left London in 1958 , these photos are very moving for me a big thank you

      • John Tracey

        John Tracey,
        Hello to you all. This is a fascinating site. First time I have seen it. I lived in Chippenham Road no 108 and went to St. Peter’s in Chippenham Mews. Moved to the Britwell, Slough in 1957, Eyre Green. I remember just a few names from St. Peter’s. Patchy Edwards, Roy Hall and Linda Stevenson who I think I was in love with!!

  • Peter Freeman

    wasn’t sure where to pots these links so I’ll post them here for your interest http://www.flickr.com/photos/67827566@N00/12689955825/

  • Helen Austin

    The last picture of St. Mary Magdelenes’ church shows a street of houses
    In the background. This was Clarendon Crescent, my husband was born in one of the houses at the top end, no. 22. The building going on is the Warwick Estate, and most people moved out to Slough and Crawley. We still have the old street sign for Clarendon Crescent, our souvenir of the past.
    Helen Austin

    • Jim

      Hi Helen, I also was born in Clarendon Crescent and like your husband at the top end looking at your picture in 1957. Sorry can’t remember the number but on the right hand side well past the Church. Good times nice to read your comments.
      Regards Jim.

    • Daryl Haskins

      Hi Helen, wow what a story, does not look like that now, i actually work at Edward Wilson Primary School in the fourth picture left of the middle and have done for 7yrs now, watch The Blue Lamp and it will bring it all back to life.
      I did the other day and was amazed at what i saw, got this info off an old boy and his daughter that used to go to the School i work at just the other day, he said he used to go the school SIXTY years ago, and how everything was different.

      • michael Bishop

        I used to box in Edward Wilson [Senior Street] Jackie was the trainer for years; Edgar Pierce as well…..

      • Don Roberts

        I realise it’s a long time since this original post, I was born at number 15 Darlington Terrace in 1951, I went to Edward Wilson, leaving in 1963 to move to Rutherford Comprehensive in Marylebone, we moved to the White City Estate in 1957. Don Roberts. (now living in South Wales)

      • J.Cowling

        I also was at Edward Wilso School 60 years ago ..I might know the old boy you spoke to
        The headmaster was called Mr.Stride we were all scared of him..Is the playground still on the roof? It was just for the girls..boys on the ground one.
        If you are him again tell him I lived in one of the prefab Westbourn square

    • Michael Collins

      I was born at 12 Clarenden Crescent in 1952 , my father was William (Bill) Collins.
      We moved to Slough on to the Britwell estate in 1954, my mothers sister also lived in Clarenden Crescent, Rose Higgingbottom they also moved to the Britwell.
      Would love to hear from anyone who can remember our family.

    • Rosemary Smith

      I Was Brian Austin part of your family Helen Austin ??

    • Alan suffling

      hi Helen me and my mates used to go in all the houses where your husband was born when they were empty before they pulled them down

  • Tony Faris

    The similarity between this area and Notting Dale are quite marked. I lived in Walmer Road until about 1958 and then later moved to Bourne Terrace in 1964. I used to fish on the canal here as a teenager and the walk to my favourite spot took me past the church in the photos. The houses beside the canal (Clarendon Crescent I believe) were still standing but only partly occupied. On the odd occasion the friendly people nearby would pass me a mug of tea over the wall. It was a sad day when the houses were finally demolished. The church did indeed have a sombre appearance and has been, I believe, used as a location for films and TV dramas of a certain type.

  • aidanmcmanus


  • Triona

    Fantastic pictures – numerous ancestors of mine lived in Clarendon Crescent (or Clarendon Street as it was known as previously) and the surrounding streets, and were married in that church. So tragic that all these streets are gone…

  • shirley

    Yes the church. Is st mary magdalenes I lived opposite to it for over 40 years in Atherstone court the bells used to ring.it doesn’t do that anymore ans tes the chuech has been used in many films and tv programmes it is really beautiful inside

  • Amir Ryan

    Reading this as i love London Hostory then i notice it is st mary magdalene church right outside my bedroom window, this area in the pictures is warwick estate

  • Alan Suffling

    Hi lived at 19 atherstone ct 1963 then moved to beauchamp lodge 1967, i remember father stevenson who was the vicker

  • Daniel Haggett

    Great post, found it fascinating. I love trying to orientate myself in these pictures. In the 10th picture down where you say you are struggling to orientate yourself, the photo is taken a few blocks South of Mary Magdalene church. In front of the church is the Edward Wilson primary school, which is still there. The row of white houses to the right of Mary Magdalene church is Blomfield road, which overlooks the canal. I am pretty sure the street in the foreground is no longer there, and instead there is something much uglier like the Westway.

  • Michael T. Hyde

    I was born not far away in Westbourne Terrace Road (very expensive Victorian houses now) in 1947 and we used to pass St Mary Magdalene’s Church on our way to the Catholic Church – in (I think) Cirencester Street – Our Lady of Sorrows most Sundays. I have fond memories of all the area – Harrow Road (and a Woolworths where I chose my toy soldiers displayed behind little glass partitions). We left the area in about 1957 to a new housing estate in Langley Buckinghamshire and a couple of years later moved over to another estate Britwell. Both these estates were either side of Slough. Thank you for jogging my memories.
    Michael Hyde

    • leapfrogmark

      The Britwell also being where the Rt. Hon Alan Johnson MP, former resident of Walmer Road, also ended up.

    • rose

      I was born in 1947 and lived in Bourne Terrance, top floor #24

    • Rosemary Smith

      The Catholic church I thought was Our lady of Doalers (forgive the spell ing)

      • denis

        Hi, the catholic church is Our Lady of Sorrows on Cirencester street which is still there – it was in danger of closing but has been revived by the recent arrival of Maronites from Lebanon and Syria. Attached to the church was the R.C primary school, ‘Our Lady of dolours’ which has a playground on the roof -at one pointthe only playground – very good for traching you to keep a football on the ground! I attended ‘Dolours’ from 1966-1972 and have very fond memories of some very good teachers.

    • J.Cowling

      Yes I could never understand the logic of it ..I felt like apart of my early history was taken away
      My father was born in Delermere Cresent that gone his sister Lilly Dell is still alive in her 90s
      I went to Senior St School I was born in 1946

  • steve

    The last photo of the church with the crane and boarding,is now the warwick estate paddington, the houses on the right,run along the grand union canal,all the houses went in the late 60’s early 70’s with the construction of the warwick estate.

  • Nat Rodgers

    I lived in 112 Clarendon cresc. We used to play cricket outside the church, I went to Edward Wilson primary school Good old days. Nat Rodgers

    • Jenny Williams

      Hi my dad and his family lived in no 49 Clarendon Crescent – do you happen to recognize any names at all? They were Alfred and Mary Mills and their children Charlotte, Richard and Elizabeth. Then Elizabeth married Charles Belcher and had 7 children one of which was my dad, Bill Belcher. t would be fascinating if someone had known them. My dad was born in 1934. Thanks, Jenny

      • Michael.Collins

        At the top of Clarendon Crescent in the middle of the road was some public toilets , my mothers father Ted Allen was the attendant he lived in number 30 for great number of years. I was born at number 12 in 1952 and moved to Mansfield Close on the Britwell in 1955.

      • John Thompson

        Hi Jenny, My mother who is 92 was born in Cirencester Street – and her grandparents were an Alfred and Mary Mills (one of whom descendents is Alec Mills the James Bond cameraman..
        They lived nearby – so could easily be one and the same!
        My mother left the basement home in 1933 so would have lost touch with the extended family
        Regards John Thompson

  • Roy Hamshaw

    I came across your site this morning while carrying out a search into my ancestry. My grandmother, Margaret Winifred Pugh was born at 77 Clarendon Street on 15 August 1870, daughter of Edward Price Pugh and Mary Ann Pugh, formerly Matthews.
    My great grandfather Edward was a police sergeant in what was at the time called 5X division, which I assume was in Paddington.
    I haven’t been able to locate exactly where number 77 Clarendon Street was but the photographs help me get a better picture.
    It could be that my grandmother was baptised at St Mary Magdalene church.

  • george t, wallis

    hi there you have few memories there i lived in 79 woodchester street opposite the junior school during the blitz we had guns outside mary mags
    and they made quite a racket i went to senior street school at the time we moved out in 1957 april by the end of the year they was knocking everything down many memories of those days . there was a shop opposite mary mgs maddens al us kids used to with mr madden picking up butterfly putting in a bucket water which one of us carried those were good days

    helen austin ,did you marry terry or brian our relations the masons lived in 24 opposite maxie webbers shop penny for a fag

    • tonytombling

      Blimey George, you’re definitely stirring the old memory buds talking about Maxie Webbers. He used to use those cleaned out fish paste jars, and sell us a shot of Tizer in one of those for a penny. He used to play along with us, when we had come back from seeing a Hopalong Cassidy film at the Colly. We would slap our pennies down on the counter, and ask for “a shot of red eye, Maxie”. A great bloke, with a lovely lady for his Mrs. I reckon that they probably knew all the kids names in the crescent. Happy, innocent, joyful times.

  • John Ince

    I know most of the pictures above. I played in the old houses before they where knock down, near St Mary Magdalenes Church. The BBC have used the church for Waking the dead and Silent witness. I known th.e whole area well my school was in Waverly Walk now gone, but the picture showing the Harrow Road showing the Wilett builders shows the Old Ben Johnson pub on the corner of Waverly Walk. it was good to see these pictures, also look up Roger Mayne who took photo of the area in the 50’s.

  • Ian mackay

    In the film the Blue Lamp that covers most of this area, is there not a car chase scene where they speed around the corner where the church is..
    I remember alot of us used to go to Scotties opposite the Harrow road Police Station for a coffee, then to The Ben Johnson, it had a sort of renaissance in the early part of the 1960’s when we all used to go there on a Friday night, an Indian man called Ida (or something like it) opened a sort of club in a basement nearby, we all a lot younger then, I would have loved to have had all the old photos from the photo studio shop near the BJ in the Harrow road, I can remember proud photos of West Indian chaps in their London transport uniforms in the shop window, although we had a lot less, those days seemed happier !

  • Ian mackay

    The second photo is of the area called the Chippenham, named after a pub of the same name, I think Estate Agents now call it Maida Hill as if that changes anything!

    • Peter Hewlett

      Hi I wonder if you went to the holy trinity school in the early fifties. Your surname seems very familiar. I went there in this era.If you did I would be interested to hear from you. Pete.

      • Ian Mackay

        I lived in Connaught Street I went to school at Hampden Gurney off the Edgware Road, in 1950/1 I moved to Herries Street W10, and went to Wilberforce School and then Beethoven Street School having failed the eleven plus, being born in 1944 I well remember a lot of the Paddington area of my child hood.

      • peter Hewlett

        Hi Ian I remember connaught st near Marble arch, I used to work in a deli just at the end of the that road.Beethoven school I remember as they had more than their share of pretty girls< WE would wander up that way just to clock the talent.

      • Ian Mackay

        Peter thank you for your reply, in 1956 when I started at Beethoven St School, we were the start of an all boys intake, we still had girls in the years above us, and yes some were attractive. In Connaught St, I lived above a laundry, I think it was 20A, in the basement was the boiler, where a very stern boiler lady raised steam, the ground floor was the shop, and on the first floor were several ironing ladies, we lived on the top floor, it was through one of the ironing ladies that we arrived in Herries St, as she had some rooms to let as we had to move, as the laundry was shutting down, Hyde Park was my play area as a child, I used to know a boy who lived in Kendal St, and we must have covered every inch of the park, I well remember when they had herds of sheep grazing there, and I fell onto some of their droppings, not to be recommended!
        Before starting at Hampden Gurney school I attended nursery in Gt Western Road as my mum had to go to work, I can still remember the toffee apples you could buy at the green grocers before the canal bridge, I loved the flat bit where it set on the tray, its no wonder I have spent a fortune at dentists in my later years !

      • maureen fallows nee winn

        i went to holy trinity when it became a girls secondery the boys went to st pauls alfred rd mr holtham was the headmaster left in 1962 i was 15

  • Elaine Phillips

    Great photos, brings back memories of my childhood. I used to live in Cirencester Street. Does anybody know any of the following people who I used to be friendly with: Roy Davies, Tommy & Micky Moore, Kenny Green, Johnny Oddie, Billy Brown, Janet Ramsey, Barbara Penment. My name is Brian & my twin’s name is Alan Phillips, also my cousin Kenny Whitman.

    • John Ince

      Did Micky Moore And Biliy Brown go to Holy Trinity with St Paul in Waverly Walk in the late fifty’s?

    • Roger Kaupe

      My mother was adopted but her birth mother was Mary Phillips, who lived at 20 Clarendon Gardens for most of the 1940s, with her elderly mother Elizabeth Phillips . I don’t suppose that name rings any bells? We’ve been trying to find out more about her for years.

  • steve

    I have just come across this web site and am totally amazed, i was born on alfred rd 1970, and moved across the road to bourne terrace in 1982 and lived there till 1994, i noticed you mention “maps” i would love to see those, the old paddington before the construction of the warwick estate is something i would love to see , have you posted them somewhere?
    Would love to know

  • michael Bishop

    I have just come across this site as well, Steve; my gran lived on the corner of Waverley Terrace just opposite St Pauls school were I also went with my brother Harry from about 1949 till 1957 etc. your a lot younger than I am; but the area remained much the same till it was demolished and replaced with the Warwick Estate; which is so boring, nothing like the Streets filled with low rise real houses and streets full of kids playing free from cars; I will save this page and return…..Micky Bishop.

    • John Ince

      Hi Michael. I started at St Pauls there from 1958-1962. so you must remember Dolly sweet shop which backed onto the play ground. There are good photos of the area taken by Roger Mayne (RIP) which you can look up on he’s website.

      • michael Bishop

        Hi John; I left St Pauls in 1957…..So you were there after I left etc….I don’t remember the sweet shop that backed onto the playground; but before the playground was built out of back yards; we had a Play Street out front of the School which was Waverley Terrace etc, and across Alfred Rd to the right on leaving the school doors, left into Alfred; there was a shop called Randal’s etc; not sure if your spell randal’s that way but that was the name of the lady that ran the shop; very near that shop was the entrance to the Paddington Goods Yard lorry entrance; lots of those three wheeled scammel’s used to come and go along Alfred Rd; we used to run behind them and get a lift to Holy Trinity for school dinners; Holtham was the headmaster; skinny little runt he was…..My Nan lived on the Corner House of Waverley Terrace and Alfred Rd……..I think it was Snows Bakery at the top near the Harrow Rd. The Coliseum [Bughole] was our local cinema….there was a great Pie and Mash shop a couple of doors from the cinema…..bye for now….Mick.

      • John Ince

        Hi Mick. I think I got it wrong the name of the lady that who came from the shop to sale us sweets was called Dolly. She came over the road with a box full of cake etc to the play ground. I had many happy hours in that play ground playing football across it, one goal being chalked onto wall of the house and the other the fence that backed onto the bomb site. I remember old Harry Holtham and you summed him up about right. The other teacher where Reggie Meadows, Mr Sofee, Mr Macho and Mr Lence I think I spelled their names right (never did learn to read or write properly there) and was caned by all of them. They weren’t bad teachers and I was very happy there. We had to go to the girl’s school for our dinner by Royal Oak station it’s all gone now. On the way back from dinner would wait by the traffic lights on the Harrow Road for a coco cola lorry to stop and we would run out a nick a few. I played in a lot the empty house shown above in the pictures by the Church before they knock them down, for a Kid it was a big play ground for us and I loved it. I remember the Bakery, Coliseum [Bughole] and Pie and Mash shop. It fact I went to school was the boy who’s dad owned the shop. What I most miss about the area was the people, most of area kids would go to St Paul boys or girls and there were many big families in that area. What I think I got out of the times was how to be street wise. If you look up Roger Mayne website photo’s he got a couple of picture of Waverley Terrace and Alfred Rd. Are you still in the area? bye for now John

      • michael Bishop

        I don’t know or remember that Dolly lady ‘’John’’ as she probably came after I left….There were houses all around the Play ground area before WW2; so there was no playground as such; as I said we had a Play Street which was banned to cars; not that anyone had a car then…..LOL……

        The Play Street was Waverley Terrace from Alfred Rd to Waverley Walk; then about 1954 they built the playground; [ Holtham was head at that time] the houses that got bombed were in orchard street; you will remember the prefabs opposite the playground wall the other end from the school; well there were houses there and where the prefabs were put up; there was a dairy as well near Waverley walk in orchard street.

        The bomb site I think you’re talking about was still undeveloped and to the right as you left the school and walked into the playground; at the top on the right etc…I think the teacher called Sofee was called sofa; but it might not be the same man; this one was well built, largish and had a moustache; but he went to the girls school I think; if not he wasn’t at the school in my time; but if he is the same man he was at St Pauls when I was six years old; we had a Miss Moorhouse, a red head and a real looker; all the teachers used ti dribble over her; she eventually left by the time I was about ten; we had a Mr Hardesty who was deputy head under Holtham; and a Mr Readycliff we all called wanker; as he was constantly shaking his trousers with both hands in his pocket; an odd man to say the least; once he rapped my knuckles with the edge of a large ruler; it cut mu knuckles open; I shoved him out of the way crying, and jumped on him as I ran out of the class, down the stairs from the top floor. Out into Waverley Terrace and into my Nans House; she saw my hand and got mad; she was a large women with one large eye like the Cyclops; she marched over to the school and nearly strangled him; he shit himself; the whole class had a great time watching him tremble in fear; and he never once hit another kid with that ruler whilst I was in his class; the other teachers I don’t know; so they were later etc.

        The Girls School was originally the senior school that was added to St Pauls, which remained a junior school; I was in a children’s home from about 4 years old till about 6; and my mother had died of TB prior etc; she was my Nans Daughter; she had sisters but I know little on my mothers side as my father was from North London; so as my mother was dead, I never had a lot to do with my Nan in Waverley Terrace apart from the odd time I knocked on her door; but there was a family called Hobbs in Alfred Rd; and one day her son Vicky had told her my name, and she came over to talk to me, and she said she was my Aunt; but at that age I never understood that she was my mothers sister; I was surprised that the Hobbs family were my cousins etc; but I wish I had talked more with them to learn more about my mother; my Nan died about two years later, and I lost contact with my maternal family.

        There is lots to say still; like my friends that lived around that area; Brindley Rd my best mate John Kent lived, we called him Michael at school; I think he liked my name when we first met at 6 years etc; and that was what we all called him ever after; mind you one day I knocked for him and his mum answered and I said ‘’Is Michael in’’ and she replied nobody by that name lives here…..LOL

        Got to sort out my dinner now as football is on soon; but I will catch up later…….Mick.

      • michael Bishop

        Part Two}

        Hi John; I will catch up with the last lot……I know what you mean about learning to read and write there; It was the same for us all; but I did teach myself all I needed from the library and night school for trade jobs etc.

        It might interest you being younger; that there was only St Pauls in the late 1940, the girls used to go to St Pauls as well; which was nice…….LOL……Then I think Holy Trinity Church on Bishops Bridge Rd gave over the Harrow Rd Site for School use etc; which became a senior school; then shortly after Holtham separated the girls to go to Holy Trinity; and the boys to go to St Pauls etc; later if wanted I could name lots of people; you never know one or two might click with you, or others that read the site etc; The Hobbs family was large; about ten kids I think…?.

        I lived in Clifton Gdns most of my life; the reason I went to St Pauls was because my older brother went there; he knew our Mother; I never did; and as one of our Nans lived in the Terrace he obviously went to school there; I think the reason we lived in Clifton Gdns on my release from a childrens home was because my Mum got bombed out; and they moved her to Maida Vale just before she died in 1947….But for years after that I boxed at Senior Street, Middle Row, and North Kensington; the Senior Street is also Edward Wilson of course; they used to have an Irish Girl Band there training in the lower school hall; with the boxing on the first floor hall; I tell you John; those girls in their uniforms marching up and down the hall playing; was a pure joy to see and hear; the Band Owner lived in Clifton Villas; I often saw their Ford Transit parked outside their house.

        You obviously went school swimming in Porchester Hall as well; remember the Iron Bridge from Torquay St to Westbourne Park Villas; that is still there today; and although I used Seymour Hall baths later; Porchester Small was always my favourite; and Rudges Cycle Shops; Our Lady of Dolours? [ one granddaughter baptised there ] and of course all the Blue Lamp house I remember well; the scene where Bogarde is chased from the house and gets into the final car with his mate; that house was spot on the corner of Delamere Terrace; I knew a girl there called Maggie [ I think that was her name] once on friends reunited a girl from Cirencester contacted me; and she said she fancied me at the time; ‘’a said’’ why didn’t you tel;l me then not now…So it goes to show that sometime others know us, but we don’t know them…..??.
        Today I still live near where it all was; I am five minutes walk from Clifton Rd. and I wouldn’t change my home or area for anywhere in the World; every time I pass any place I am at the time; I see old friends, those times, even the things we did; and most are dead now…
        Well I think I caught up with your post; So Bye for now John……Mick.

  • michael Bishop

    Just an off-chance for the Paddington Lot: anyone know or remember these people; possible family on my mothers side; Winifred F M Dean DOB 1926.

    Christine G Harrison DOB 1927.

    James B Harrison DOB 1930.

    Children ?

    Pamela J Scott DOB 1947.

    Geoffrey B Dean DOB 1948.

    Janette Ridgwell DOB 1950.

    Catherine S Dean 1952.

    Any information would be appreciated; for our family tree etc…..

  • MagsH

    Ooooh’s slip of keys…

    Dear Dave,

    Just wanted to reiterate what everyone else has said about this site – amazing & so interesting especially the old photos which gives me that warm fuzzy feel.

    In relation to the second photograph, it has already been mentioned where the area is but I just wanted to elaborate.

    Directly in the middle of the photo is a large Off Licence that my Nan used to frequent to buy her & her upstair neighbour’s Guinness & Mackson Stouts. I distinctly remember a large advertising logo of a Toucan which absolutely fascinated me as a child, it’s eye seemed to follow me around, this seemed to dominated the Off Licence.

    To the left of the Off Licence is Walterton Road, the 36 bus ran from Harrow Road & stopped just before the Off Licence in front of a basement Shoe Menders whose forever open window was a man constantly working on shoe repair, I can still smell the leather.

    The street to the left of Walterton Road is Chippenham Road & left of that (the road directly in the middle of the photo) is, as already mentioned, Shirland Road. The Chippenham Pub being on the right hand side. This pub, back in the day had one door in the Paddington Borough & the other in the Kilburn Borough. Consequently, on a Sunday evening each Borough had different closing times which would encourage my Dad, along with his friends to go out of one door & into the door around the corner for the last 30 minutes apparently still carrying their glasses.

    Back to the Off Licence – the right of the photo was a small parade of shops i.e. Hairdressers, Butchers etc. Just along was & I think still is Shirland Mews.

    Happy, happy days even though I only lived there on & off with my lovely Nan who lived in Saltram Crescent ‘The Chip’.

    Also, enjoyed reading the other comments, wonderful humour, wonderful Paddington.

    • Terry


      Very much enjoyed your piece above – particularly that of the shoe repairer. I too remember looking down from the top deck of a: 28, 31 or 36 bus, through the railings to what may have originally been his basement sitting-room, before becoming his workshop. You refer also to the shops to the right of the Off License. Directly opposite these particular shops, however, was a further parade of shops which began with Garrett’s greengrocers on the corner of Saltram Crescent; and to the right of them a workman’s cafe, a sweet shop named Tinks, a Chemist and finally a Bank on the corner.

      Opposite the shoe repairer on the other side of Walterton Road, just before the corner where a cluster of kiosks were situated, were two small shops. One was Whitty’s, which sold clocks/watches/etc, while the other was a florist. You also mentioned Shirland Mews which, if you were to walk through it, brought you into yet another parade of mixed shops on what was Fernhead Road.

  • peter Hewlett

    Hi all. My name is Peter Hewlett, I lived in18 Bourne terr. I had an elder brother Clifford also William Sister Perle.A couple of younger siblings Trevor, Jilly, Terry and Robin. I was evaccuated to Dorset, I returned at around 10years old. I was born in 1938. When I came back to London I went to Senior street school.After failing the school exams to go to a grammer school, I was sent to Amberly rd school It was full of thugs and that was mostly the teachers,So I got myself transfered to Holy Trinity along the Harrow rd. Three classes mrs king a very sexy lady. A mr Frost very handy with his knuckles on your head.That was until I said to meet me in the ring on a wenesday morning.He gave it a miss after that, So no more head banging. A great male teacher mr Soper, a large built swarthy dark haired chap,all the girls would hang around him at playtimes and lunch breaks. Another elderly teacher who I cannot the name of. My father had a yard along the Harrow rd.In picture ten is a snack bar where m y dad could be found, usually with a pint mug of tea in his hand. A bit further alongHR was the cleaning station( nitty nora) where my mother worked. On weds we would go to Essindine school for woodwork. I also swam at portchester small baths one morning a week. The peoples names I remember, are surnames no disrespect intended Fosket, a couple Clines,Tommy Hill,John Carter Who lived next door.Fred rainsford. Dick Woolhouse.Ronnie Wightman.Gerald Fitzgerald. Some of the ladies Dianna Rose Beryl Oliver. Grace King June Reilly Another name came to mind Groom,a very tall chap. In bourne terr,Some of the shops were Mobs the pawnbrokers Tony Spencer worked there. At the top of bourne tr was a mews called oliver mews which joined up with senior st, This is where the bookie had runners both ends to warn of the police. The next turning was hasbrough st where T ommy Hill lived and ronnie whiteman also lived. My fathers parents at the top end of the street.Also in BT was dan cootes who did penny drinks. harry smith was the green grocer where my uncle george worked. There was a dairy who had the mikl sent up from Wales every day, He had a little threewheeled hand cart to deliver the milk. Also was Olivers oil shop on the corner.

    • peter Hewlett

      This the continuation. A couple of more names that sprang to mind are Peter Rodway, Peter Hughs, On the first floor of senior street school was a boxing club run by a chap called Tommy Quill. A very nice chap.

    • Ted Marsh

      Hello Pete.
      I was interested to read the posts between yourself and Mike Bishop re Paddington in the old days l have in fact replied to one of Mikes messages a few weeks ago. I was born in Westbourne sq in 1936 so l think l might be a couple of years older than you, l do remember some of the names you mention in your posts and certainly recall all the places you mention, l also went to Senior st school and onward to Amberley rd when l was eleven. I was interested to hear that you were evacuated to Dorset during the war, wasn’t Bridport was it as this is where my sister and l were sent with my older brother as a matter of fact he made it his home their and never returned to London, if you have read my post to MB you will see that l have been hoping to find a photo of Westbourne sq pre war but no luck so far, if you remember Bourne terrace led down to the Square past the green grocers and oil shop that you have mentioned, it was great to hear about your memories of the old area that we lived in all those years ago, all the best. Ted Marsh.

      • peter Hewlett

        Hi Ted, it’s possible you might know my elder brother Cliff Hewlett? Or Billy? So good to find this site and share memories. I don’t find typing so easy and it would be great to be able to chat. I’m happy to ring you, it would be good to exchange memories. If you want to email me on peterhewlett@hotmail.com then I’d reply. Hope to hear from you. Thanks, Pete H

      • Peter Hewlett

        Hi Ted great to hear from you. Yes I and my brothers and sisters all were all sent to Bridport some as evacuees the younger ones because of the crap conditions in which we lived in at Bourne terrace Two rooms and a conservatory converted into a kitchen come bathroom, a table top that dropped down over the bath.The families that took us in wanted us to remain but for some strange reason my mother made us return, we were treated like slaves, So perhaps she had us back for that reason. I would have preferred to have remained with the people who really loved us . I am sure that would be the answer from all of us.

  • michael bishop

    Hi Peter; I new a youth called John Hewlett; I think it was John etc; I did see him in the Boxing Hall in Senior Street School [ Edward Wilson] he might be related to you, I never knew him that well just as someone who knew people I knew etc.. The Trainer in my time was called Jackie; he was a bantamweight from Belfast, Edgar Pierce used to help out as well; Edgar died about a year ago, I don’t know where Jackie is now, but he lived over near Buckingham Palace Rd the last time I knew etc.. I trained at Senior Street from about 1959 onward in the evenings; and over Balby Rd the 7 feathers etc, and the 4 feathers just off Church Street Marylebone.

  • peter Hewlett

    Hi thanks for replying. Im sorry I must have been before your time. We moved out on my first week at full time work. I went to work from 18 Bourne terr and cycled to our new home in Roehampton sw18 after work I think that even now it seems a strange thing to do. I worked in JJD builders supplys in Harrow rd opposite the register office, saw lots of weddings on a saturday. At the boxing club were a lot of guys older than me, A couple of brothers by the name of Ryan also a couple prize fighters whose names I cannot recall. I live in France now, But I am coming back tomorrow the 8 7 16 and I will make time to walk some of the streets. I started work at about just gone 13 years old. Pete.

  • peter Hewlett

    I went back a few days ago and walked around Bourne Terrace and saw what’s left of Senior Street school. Holy Trinity School is no longer there and the Westway flyover is on its site. The Red Lion pub has gone too. Very sad. I took plenty of photos but can’t post them in this thread. If anybody would like to see them just email me at peterhewlett@hotmail.com.

    • michael bishop

      Hi Peter. Yes Senior Street is still there; its called Edward Wilson etc; but its the same. they stopped using the evening classes in Margaret Thatchers time; cost cutting etc; Jackie and Edgar Pierce where the trainers at closing time; in-fact they were the trainers from about 1960 onwards till it finally closed; Stowe Boys club from Edgware Rd moved to the corner of Bourne Terrace, its still there but now a Health Centre; I ran a football team there about 35 years ago for about five years….The Red Lion you mention is shown in a film called Bitter Harvest, it also shows the Harrow Road near the Regal, and you can see the Pub and the Depository on the Harrow Rd heading towards Edgware Rd, which was where I hung out as a teenager; I worked for Winter Trading at the rear of the Metropolitan Music Hall……I know what you mean about posting pictures; I looked weeks ago but couldn’t find anywhere to upload them so I gave up; but there are scenes in Spare the Rob, Max Bygraves that shows Lords Hill Rd, the junction of Cirencester and the Church, near the Stone Bridge; I cut them from that film, but it was wasted as I can’t post them either; Holy Trinity went about 50 years ago……LOL……You don’t get many replies on this forum, I think most have died or stopped popping in etc. but you never know; one day someone else might pass accidently, and make contact; so its worth the odd look in etc……..Best Wishes……Micky Bishop.

      • James shailer

        I also trained at Edward Billson with Jacki and Edgar they were great for the kids I was born in 66 and played on the bombsights and are building along the back of the canal near the church my mum wasBarbra Clift who married George Shailer my grandad worked in the pie mash shop a few doors away from the Coliseum on the Harrow road

  • michael bishop

    PS; A Kevin Ryan used top box at Senior Street; he was very good, I saw him fight in competition bouts and he always seemed to win….LOL….but I know he preferred football, which we played in the School playground; I knew Kevin well, and so does one of my sons; the last time I saw Kevin was at a mates Grandsons Army Funeral; he was killed in Afghanistan and had a Military Send off at the Rosary Church in Old Marylebone Rd, I saw Kevin by he was leaner than the years before and I didn’t realise it was him till later, as it was a sad day etc; but I think Kevin is still around and in the Paddington area; if he had died I think someone would have told me; but I can’t be sure; the funeral was about 7 years ago; so its possible; he looked lean and fit at the time, so it looks good for him to be around still….Mick…

    • Pete C

      Hi Mick
      Just came across this while looking back in the past thought I would let you know that Kevin is still with us I was at a funeral with him not long ago old man JImmy Smiths you may know of him I also used to box with Kevin and train in Edward Wilson with Jack and Eddie although I am prop about 10 years younger than Kevin I remember in the later years just before it all stopped at Edward Wilson running to London Zoo and back to the school 10 rounds sparring and on the bag quick slosh over with water and straight over the gondolier fo 9 o’clock but then we were only fighting time will keep you informed. Good Luck

      • Michael Bishop

        Hello Pete; Yes I believe Kevin is still around today; I often hear if anyone dies through family and friends etc; I last saw Kevin at Micky Keogh’s grandsons funeral at the Rosary Church Old Marylebone Rd, he was a soldier; and he was killed in that piss-hole Afghanistan etc, oddly enough Kevin looked leaner and smaller; and believe it or not, I wasn’t sure it was him……LOL. After years, we often pass old friends in the street and fail to grasp who they are….!!

        As a teenager; I thought Kevin was a real classy Southpaw Boxer, but one day he said to me; I prefer Football….!! I was amazed, as I wished I could have been as good as him….!!

        Jackie was there with Edgar, till the Tories Closed all the school youth clubs down that had been there since the end of WW2, just to save the rich tax payers subsidising the poor, and the old people, soldiers included that were promised a land fit for Heroes; they did the same with North Sea Oil, and the Nations Assets; bought and paid for by the peoples taxes, only to sell them off to the private sector; hence expensive essential services, poor transport, and all the profits going to foreign buyers, we seem to have nothing left any more, that is British Owned…..?

        Edgar died about 2 or 3 years ago; he was a real nice guy; I sparred with him so many times over the years, he once trained the son of a famous actress; she gave him a watch engraved to Edgar; Thank you ”So & So, I won’t mention her name out of privacy and respect, but Edgar was one of those guys that really did help young people to gain confidence and lead good lives; today it seems guns and knives have changed from fair fist fights and respect, into sly nasty cowards who attack in gangs and back-stab, and worse.

        Through all those War and Post war years; I think we had a better Country then; than the Politicians have forced on us today; I really do feel sad for all our Grandchildren; they will never know the Freedom and Hope we were born with in those days.

        I don’t know what happened to Jackie, he was from Belfast, as was my Grandfather, the last time I saw Jackie was in Church Street about 30 years ago, Church Street is like Baghdad Market now………!! Before that I dropped him just off Buckingham Palace Rd, where he had a Flat etc.

        Take Care…………Mick.

    • Kelly Curran

      Hi, saw your lovely comments about my grandad Kevin Ryan, he passed a few weeks ago. Was nice to read about the boxing. Thank you

      • michael bishop

        Hi Kelly. Are you related to the Curran Family from the Edgware Rd area……..? I think you might be, as Kelly sounds familiar etc, one of my sons was great pals to Dave, etc.

        I did hear about your Grandfather Kevin from one of my sons ”Daughter” etc. At our age, Kevin & myself, we seems to be losing all our old friends from the happier times of cocky youth…….LOL.

        Yes Kevin was one of those guys you never forget; he was a Southpaw ”as you probably know” boy could he hit if you were slow ducking……LOL. I was really very classy, I thought he was easily capable of winning an ABA title first attempt, ”Competition Fights” several fights amongst several boxers, all on the same night, Jesus they seemed to go on all night, but you could put your weeks wages on Kevin to win, he really was that good as just a teenager; I wished I was as good as he was, but as I said ”frustratingly” Kevin was more interested in Football, but that was Kevin, he was his own man, and trust me, you had nobody better watching your back in trouble, than your own Grandfather; to me, he was one of the best I ever knew in my life, I always remember his smile, and his politeness to everyone; except trouble makers…..LOL

        Take care Kelly; I am very sure your Grandad was just as proud of you, as you are of him.

        Yes It was sad to hear he had gone; from my granddaughter Tilly Bishop; but as those who love others know, at those sad times ”They will never be forgotten”. Kevin was really one of those nice guys that are very rare today.

        Lots of love to you, and all your family Kelly; and not forgetting Kev, So for him; have a very happy life, that is what its all about, and what he would surely want for you and his entire family; remember also; you are all his life work and his immortality for ever, just like a link in a never-ending chain; you are ”Kevin” in your mind, heart, body and blood..!!

        Micky Bishop.

  • peter Hewlett

    Hi Michael, I’m enjoying reading your memories. It would be good to talk. If you can email your phone number to me at peterhewlett@hotmail.com I could give you a call (our calls are free). Hope to hear from you. Cheers Pete

  • michael bishop

    Hi Peter; I don’t give out personal details on the internet for anything; sorry about that, you never know who or what can read your details etc; so a long time ago I even stopped posting on forums as well; on here I just write about things that others might ask or link too etc, its all fact but only of use to those from that time and area. I will reply to posts on here, as it not only links us, it links others to the same topic etc…….I still live near where I grew up, so I see what changes and what doesn’t change, believe it or not I don’t even answer my home phone due to pests and con-artists, or kids wanting a sub………LOL………..Take care ok, and if I can help, just post on here………..Mick.

  • peter Hewlett

    Hi Mike. Thanks for your reply. Sorry you have had problems on your coms. how much nicer it would be if people treated one and other with respect. Cheers Pete.

    • michael bishop

      Hi Pete; if you need to know anything I know; just post here and tick the notify ok……I might even go off line later this year; I have had enough of BT and its connections as well, and as I get out on the streets a lot I use the internet mainly for amazon or ebay etc, I even have two pay as you go mobile phones and never use them……LOL……Stay in touch through here; and when I am on line I will see the mail and reply ok…..Mick.

  • peter Hewlett

    Hi Michael I lived in Bourne Terrace and there were some small streets off it, one of them Oliver Mews (joining Senior Street). Hasborough Street, I think. And Stanton Street or was it Statton Street. There was one next to the school, the first one had air raid shelters in it after the war. I just bought a 1938 A-Z of London but it doesn’t name those roads. Do you remember? Cheers Pete

    • michael bishop

      Hi Pete; Bourne Terrace used to be called Westbourne Terrace North in the late 1910s to 1914s aprox; then it changed to Bourne Terrace; likewise some streets got demolished to make way for Senior Street School; in 1872 on a map I have the roads you mention are there; I,E Oliver Mews was called Oliver Place, Hasborough St, remained the same: then you had Stalham St, then Emily St, and Philip St, all between Senior St and Westbourne Terrace North to Ranelagh Rd, later called Lord Hills Rd which ran from the Stone Step Bridge to the Harrow Rd and the Royal Oak Tube Station..

      So in our time it was Bourne Terrace, left into Oliver Mews, out the other end and turn right into Senior St, [ Dartington Terrace used to be there][ just a small group of hourse; about half a dozen] next from Harrow Rd end of Bourne Terrace; on the left Oliver Mews, forward Bourne again, on the next left Hasborough St, next left off Bourne, Stalham St, and between that and Philip Terrace was Senior St School, and it was built after demolishing Emily Street which was slap bang in the middle of the school….!!

      So you can see before and after WW2 streets changed and post war schools built and bombed houses replaced with flats and other houses etc.

      Waverley Walk in our time was called Waverley Rd in 1914 etc. I can see the streets as they were then in my head, even the names I did not know, never dulled the actual place as I knew it, as kids don’t take a lot of notice of names, but the do remember places very accurately in detail even the state or condition of those places etc……If you remember Senior Street you will remember the Irish Girl Pipe Band……They really were magnificent little Colleens to be sure to be sure…….LOL…..Their Leader lived in Clifton Villas, I often saw there Van parked there……..Best Wishes….Mick.

      • peter Hewlett

        Hi. Mick. Thank you for the info. If lived in that area, it was pretty close in friendships. unfortunatly for me, We were one of the first families to be rehoused over on the roehampton estate. the whole course of my life altered with that move, met whole new groups of people, changed jobs, ended up in the norwegian merchant navy, nat service. I used to court a young lady from stalham st, who moved to kensal rise, her name was Anne Murphy also known Rosie, she had a older sister, and a younger brother called Tommy. I would love to know what happened to her, she moved to my mothers at one point, Then might have gone to America or Australia. One of lifes mysteries. The weather here is scorching at last. Coming back in on the friday next a birthday suprise for brotherinlaw. Take care thanks for the info,ARC Pete

  • michael bishop

    Excuse the spelling; one of my pest sons called while I was typing; he wanted a sub…..LOL…….I just remembered a boy called Jackie Roach I suppose it was just Jack; but he insisted it was Jackie; so we called him Jackie; he lived just outside Oliver Mews in those Houses called Dartington Terrace; which was really ”Senior Street Proper” when we we 15 we went camping; he was always on about Shakespeare, and I wanted to go to Cornwall, but he begged to go to Stratford on Avon, and against my better judgement we jumped a train at Paddington and ended up in Stratford on Avon; well it pissed down with rain for a week solid and we nearly died of pneumonia, I lasted a week then jumped back on the train to Paddington, and I never did get to Cornwall…….I never saw Jackie again as we started working then, and Rock and Roll was what took over after that and life really started moving fast……..!!

  • Alan O

    Thank you for these haunting pictures which conjure memories of my own childhood in Acton W3. I came to the site searching for photos of Braden Street W9, where my grandmother was born in 1883. However, all but a corner of the street is demolished, like so much of working class Victorian London, to make way for blocks of flats.

    • michael bishop

      I remember Braden Street W9; it ran from Shirland Rd to Amberley Rd, in Amberley Rd was Amberley Rd School, at the top of Amberley Rd was the Harrow Rd, turn left for the Pie and Mash Shop and the Coliseum Cinema where the Film ”The Blue Lamp” was made. Paddington General Hospital was to the right slightly on the other side of the Harrow Rd.. My first wife had and Aunt and Uncle who lived in Braden Street; they bought the house for £500 and it was bought on compulsorily purchase order by the State or council etc; today it would be worth about £450.000, so another working class person was robbed by the State……..? I worked in a mews the next street down with cyanide in steel gear production; Amberley Rd you might remember was full of scrap yards mostly dealing in rags and paper, and a few Timber Yards supplied by barges on the Regents Canal; I used to go out with a pram before school to collect waste paper, rags, bottles, and horse hair mattresses to earn some money for food for me and my brother to eat; if I was unlucky we starved till school dinner time, but most days I did well enough to be able to afford Shredded Wheat, Porridge, and sometimes Pie and Mash or Fish and Chips, there were also a few Farrari Cafes along the Harrow Rd where we got Egg and Chips for 9pence. I remember most of the roads now gone to build the Warwick Estate; and to be honest the houses the State Destroyed were far better than the Estate they built in its place. As it happens; today on Talking Pictures TV there is a film called ”Spare the Rod” Max Bygraves; and you can see in the beginning some of the Old Area, although not Braden Street; more the other side of the stone pedestrian bridge, Lords Hill etc; its supposed to be about and east end school, but its filmed in your Area of Paddington. In the other Paddington Film, ”The Blue Lamp” the little girl who tells the Police, ”My Dad says” ”All Coppers Are” was called Sally, and she is still alive and I see her often; as a matter of interest; Sally told me she got a red bike for her part in the film………I am often sad that we Londoners have lost our City, and our Culture; today its all about money and greed.

      • Jillian Foley

        My late husband had a factory in Braden Street which was compulsory purchased in 1969. He moved his business to Sussex but it was never the same. I think the destruction of all the little houses in Braden Street was scandalous. It is just a boring bit of grass now with only one property remaining on the corner. The whole area is covered in blocks of flats. Only half of Amberley Road remains. Amberley Mews was demolished – such a shame. The amount of beautiful houses which were destroyed in this area is unbelievable. They would be worth millions today after being modernised inside. Viewing the Blue Lamp on dvd is fascinating and the Reel Streets website gives a detailed description of all the scenes. Amberley Road is clearly visible in one of the scenes. Heartbreaking to see this part of London all gone!

      • Mary Garnham

        I went to Amberley Rd School after the war. I remember Miss Lemon was Head Mistress at the time. I remember a girl pupil who lived opposite the school in Amberley Rd – I just remember her surname was White – she had very black hair. I lived in Clarendon Crescent but that’s all gone now. Like you’ve said, those houses would be worth many many thousands had they’d been left & renovated. M.G .


        Hi Michael. Re Braden Street – so disappointed my comment not published – was there yesterday! Did I say something wrong? Regards. Jillian.


        So lovely to get a reply to my post on Braden Street from yourself. I have looked up the history of the school and there are some wonderful photos of the children in the school which I understand has been demolished – and are now luxury flats? Correct me if I am wrong. I found the post from Michael Bishop so interesting and informative. I was so upset when my late husband’s factory was compulsory purchased in 1969 – I absolutely loved the area – he employed many ladies from Amberley Road and Braden Street and being so close to Little Venice made it so attractive to me and I now live down in Hove on the seafront. My husband passed away in 2009 and I have my children and grandchildren here but my heart is in Braden Street and Little Venice. I am 77 now and can remember so clearly my visits to Braden Street as a 16 year old. On one occasion I had treated myself to a bleach and tint and had should length platinum blonde hair. As I waited outside the factory a group of children turned up and I wound down the window and they said ”Is your hair real?.” I said feel free to touch and they did – hilarious laughter all round. A moment I shall always remember.

  • peter Hewlett

    Hi When they were making the Blue lamp, Us children wanted to be in the film, So we drove the stars and crew mad by trying to walk in shot. Jack Warner tried to pretend he was a real copper by telling us to move along. When we pointed out that he was not a real, He handed us a tanner each to leave them in peace, Which worked much better, As most of us shot off. to buy food of some sort. He came across as a really nice man. p.

    • michael bishop

      Hi Peter. Did you go to the Blue Lamp filming site in Hall Place just off the Edgware Rd…..?……..That scene was where Sally found the gun, and there were lots of other kids there etc; Micky Kehoe was one of them, he can be seen in the same scene etc; his grandson was killed in Afghanistan about six or seven years ago; the Army had a memorial service for him at the Rosary Church Old Marylebone Rd….Micky.

      • Jim dempsey

        Hi Peter Have just read read your comments about Paddington this site which was sent to me by my brother in Australia,while reading all the comments about Padding ton I came across your letter regarding the film the Blue Lamp which I also watched being made.But what I was most interested in was your comment about Micky Kehoe, I knew Micky very well I lived just around the corner from him in Church St almost opposite Paddington Green Children Hospital ,I lived next door to the Hall Arms pub which Morgans Dairy was next door to we lived on top floor (when you see Sally find the gun with the scene with Mick in,you will see the two buildings in the background with wooden props ) well that’s where we lived but not at the time this film was made, we were moved to a house in Connaught Sq. around the corner from Marble Arch.
        Getting back to Micky we went to the same school St James R.C school in Marylebone Lane W.1 and I was so sorry to see he had lost a son in Afghanistan I am 79 now and live in Stevenage but if Micky is still about I would love to make contact with him and talk about our days playing on the Bombsites when we were young.

      • michael bishop

        Hi Jim; I have passed on your message to micks wife; I won’t say more on-line; as its personal and private etc; but you will hear something from micks end; if its all genuine; once his wife passes on the message; OK.

      • peter Hewlett

        Hi michael I did not make these comments, Not sure you mailed the right address.

      • michael bishop

        Sorry Pete; I don’t know what’s going on; but I got a mail from Jim Dempsey asking about someone I and he knows; and I thought I was passing on some information to Jim Dempsey etc……Maybe it will sort itself out……??……Best Wishes……Mick.

      • Peter Hewlett

        Hi Jim, I use to do the weekend veg shopping in Church St. Back in the day. There was a short chap who sold tomato by the basket, just on the point of over ripe, very cheap, a real showman, he held his audience spellbound. That’s where I got my taste for fried toms. He seemed to be there on a Saturday. Right at the top was a sweet shop by the name of Taylor’s. My mum made a deal with them, in exchange for our sugar ration, we got sweets, a long walk from Bourne Terrace. It’s a lot of money at time two old pence to ride the trolley bus.I walked ,a lot back then, to save money. I use to walk in the other direction to coop, to get the main shop, I still remember our members number.I carried two ex parachute bags full to the brim with shopping, back home every Friday, just to save again.

      • michael

        The Veg and Fruit salesman you mention; might be Silk; ”Silky” it was outside the Harp, and the Public Toilets; he would stand up on his stall selling boxes of everything cheap for a fraction of the costs……??

      • Peter Hewlett

        Hi Mike, I think you as probably right on the chap in Church St, He was quite the showman.Fun days!

      • michael

        Hi Pete; Silky was there in the 50s; till the 70s aprox; there was always a big crowd there near 4pm; when he sold the lot that was left; Cheap etc; I bought some myself now and again, but half of it was rotten……..LOL…..Best Wishes…….Mick.

      • Peter Hewlett

        Hi Mike. Yes I Think we have the right guy, a very sharp dresser, with an eye for the ladies. A good salesman! P.

      • Ian Mackay

        I remember Silks fruit stall in the middle of Church Street, I think his son was in my class at Wilberforce school, sadly there must have been a family split as he changed his name to Livermoor.. I do remember carting home a box of windfalls from Silks in his Saturday afternoon sell off, bitter little apples they were as well !

  • peter Hewlett

    Hi mike, I only remember around amberly rd the collie cinema and some of the roads along harrow rd. Sorry to hear of your mates sons death. Its a good job there are brave men like him on the globe. RIP.

    • michael bishop

      Hi Peter. I just thought you might have been one of the kids on that bombsite where Sally found the gun; there were a few there that day, but not me……LOL. Micks grandson had left the army, but re-joined after not finding work he liked on civvy street; its one of those things as you get older and older, we lose lots of family and friends, many a lot younger as in this case; I have been lucky myself; lost no kids, however all my immediate family are long gone, I am the oldest male left; but I ain’t giving up without a fight……..LOL………..Who Cares Anyway…….Live, Laugh, Love, and Do it all over again………Mick.

      • peter Hewlett

        Hi Mike Thanks for your reply. Where obouts did you live? As you can see from my posts i was from Bourne Terrace> My dad was born in Philip terrace just around the corner. My mothers mother lived in Torquey st Spelling does not look right, But was on the other side of the road leading to the halfpenny steps as we called them.She ran a boarding house for actors. She had passed on by the time I was born. I remember the bomb that flattened the square at the bottom of bourne terrace, A couple of bombs going towards the school near senior street, The street with the shelters in it .P.

      • michael bishop

        Hi Pete; just finished shopping around Edgware Rd, its changed a lot in the last 50 years…..LOL. The Old Woolworths is now Waitrose, I use it a lot and M&S as Tesco’s is crap. I remember Torquay St well; little houses like cottages etc, the halfpenny steps were along the Harrow Rd near the Avenues they led into Kensal Rd; where Wedlake swimming baths were; but I know the Bridge you mean; it was over the railways leading to Royal Oak and Paddington Station etc; we used that bridge every week in school term to take us from Waverley Walk to Porchester Swimming Baths for school swimming lessons etc; the next road up from Torquay was Hampden Crescent where I had a lot of friends, my mothers ”mother” had a large house in Alfred Rd and she also took in lodgers; she married a few times, but once my mother died after a couple of years she married again and her husband didn’t like her grandkids calling, so that was than, she died about five years later, but he nasty husband died first, so she got his money, me and my brother think she poisoned him; as all her husbands died after a short time of marriage; I guess in those days Arsenic Flypapers were very cheap, and used a lot by unhappy wives…..LOL.

        I lived in Clifton Gardens, which was more Maida Vale, but I went to school over Waverley Walk etc, and most of my friends before I left school were from that part of Paddington…..I have traced a vast family tree on my fathers side; but my mother dying and her mother, that left me with no details or names I could trace easily; one of my daughters has done a lot of searching, and I do have the odd links to kids I knew from my school days, so if I get time in the near future I might start looking again, not for me but my children and grandchildren’s sake…..In my mind I can still see all the streets as they were 65 years ago, and if the Council had refurbished that area instead of knocking it down; it would have made a great film set area, with all the different streets, and the often very different buildings; as you know; Torquay St was nothing Like Waverley Walk or even Senior St etc……….Take Care Pete…….Mick.

  • Ted Marsh

    Hi Mick.
    I Have recently discovered this website and was amazed that to read all the exchanges between yourself and Pete Hewlett regarding the area of Paddington where I was also born and bred, I can remember most of the areas as shown in the photographs,and like you remember them as they were prewar, I was born in 1936 at Westbourne Square which as you may remember was situated at the bottom of Lord Hills road, Westbourne Sq did get hit by a flying bomb in 1944 and many people were killed I wonder if you remember that happening. And my family were relocated to Westbourne park road
    All the street names are very familiar to me, and you mentioned Torquay St. I used to know a Derek Satterthwaite who lived there in one of the cottages that ran parallel to the railway near the footbridge. and quite a few names that Pete has mentioned ring a bell,
    Mick can you remember the name of the pub in Bourne Terrace it was down by the school, it was on the corner and I think there was a bakers opposite (Kirstens I think it was) I know the one at the top of Bourne terrace was called the Oliver.
    I have been back to the area few times in recent years and I walk down what was Lord hills road from the canal bridge and look at the horrid flats where once stood Westbourne sq and think what it was like all those years ago, anyway Mick as I said it was nice to read your version of the old places now long gone, and also Petes details of the area all of which I remember so well.

    All the best Ted Marsh .

    Just one more thing Mick do you have, or do you know anyone who has any photos of Westbourne Square before it was bombed ive been searching for years for a photo without any luck, someone must have been around with a brownie camera at That time snapping away. Cheers mate.

    • michael bishop

      Hello Ted.
      I was born in 42, so I am younger than you; and I think Westbourne Square was already bombed by then……LOL.. But the Square was between Lord Hills Rd and Chichester etc; oddly enough about four large houses were bombed next to our house in Clifton Gardens; it was rebuilt as police flats about the mid 1950s; one day an old lady rang my bell at Clifton gardens and asked who lived there now etc; I told her my family and two others shared the very large house; then she told me about lines of stretchers and lines of bodies laying all over Clifton Rd after the Fire Services had collected all the dead; she just wanted to know if anyone had survived that night; and I couldn’t tell her for sure as it was before we moved in; even the side of the house was propped up with large wooden props from ground to the roof; stopping our house tumble down as well….!!

      My Mother’s family were Paddington, and my Fathers family North London; Stoke Newington etc; so we lived in lots of places as toddlers, me and my living brother; one had already died six months after I was born; we were bombed out of Kings Cross, Essex Rd, and Dalston, then we were moved to Maida Vale and Clifton Gardens where we lived till the mid 1970s; I still live near Maida Vale today; I refuse to leave London for anyone; However; because my mother’s family lived in that part of Paddington, me and my brother went to school over the other side of the Harrow Rd, St Pauls etc; which was later linked to Holy Trinity; that Church like Building near Westbourne Square where you once lived. There is a film called Bitter Harvest that shows the Red Lion Pub on the BR Bridge near where you lived; and you would remember that etc; it was an interesting area for me, often I would walk home to Maida Vale the long way around; walking and looking at the buildings and the street shapes; lots of Victorian Houses that looked creepy at night to kids, especially by gas street lamplight..

      Later in life I took up photography, home bathroom stuff by a hobby etc; had I done that earlier I just might have had treasured pictures of our part of old London; sadly I have very few, but you can find lots on line; so you might be lucky, even today Sunday 11/09/2016 I got eight pictures from a charity shop on the Edgware Rd; one picture is I think, of Christchurch in Marylebone; all the girls are dressed in white smocks over their dark everyday clothes, it looks like the 1920s or 30s etc; another one has about 100 people in it, loads of kids sitting in an alley way in a widish street not a road etc; lots of bunting all over the place so it was a calibration of sorts; another is of a shop under a three story building; and the shop is a Servants Registry Office; so I think this one is pre 1914 etc, as Servants started disappearing after 1918….LOL.

      The others are varied, but by looking out for odds and ends; sometimes you strike lucky; this might help with a picture of Westbourne Square etc; however I think you will need tons of Luck getting that one as it was not a posh area, so photos being rare and expensive our area would not be a prime one to photograph.

      As I said; we lived in Clifton Gardens Maida Vale; today I would need about £3 million to buy that house which is still there looking as majestic as ever; whilst my grandmothers very large house was demolished to build the ghastly Warwick Estate….!!.

      I don’t remember the Pub, Ted; but I do remember the streets and the shops, I got my cats food every evening on my way home from school in Bourne Terrace, I have seen many films about London, and even a car hire garage in the Chichester St area, there were shops there, and a café I had tea once in a while if I had collected enough bottles, rags, and paper etc; that also paid my entrance to the pictures in the evenings including the Coliseum on Lock Bridge, the Regal near Paddington Green where the Trolley Buses terminated, the Gaumont and Odeon in Edgware Rd, the Prince of Wales on the Harrow Rd, and the Metropolitan Music Hall Edgware Rd etc.

      There is a TV channel called Talking Pics TV etc; its on Satellite TV etc; they often have old British Films, and you can record the shows then grab a picture on software used for capturing own video recordings; if your into that it can get rare pictures not available elsewhere etc.

      About your time that part of the Harrow Rd had lots of Businesses on it; in the 1950s Fararis cafes, and I remember Chemical companies with large carboys outside etc; and there was a wooden hutted type clinic near the Bridge for the Royal Oak Tube Station, later Terry Downs ex-World Middle weight champion had his American Club nearer to Bourne Terrace, on the crescent part; and he had a second hand car sales there as well; the clinic was from WW2 and I had a few stitches there myself after falling in the bombed buildings…….LOl.

      There was an Army Centre there as well; on the other side of the Harrow Rd; the Royal Fusiliers etc; I was a Cadet there for a while as they gave you a free uniform to impress the girls with; and I learned about Lee Enfield 303s and Bren Guns; and how to strip them down and reassemble them and fire them; I was about 14 years old then; today you get five years if your caught with a shotgun let alone a 303 or a Bren gun LOL.

      I do not know your friend from Torquay Street; but as you know I am younger than you so as we left school at 15 a couple of years meant a lifetime etc; but I did love those Cottages; and I thought they were great; I also liked the Prefabs between Waverley Walk and Alfred Rd, there was an alley way that led from Waverley into hampden Crescent, and on the corner of Hampden there was a greengrocers, and a Pub on the other side of the alley; a short walk bought you into Torquay St, and without turning into Torquay there was the Iron Foot Bridge that took you over to Westbourne Park Villas, once again there is a film showing Westbourne Park Villas; it was about a man who was going to detonate a bomb etc, and the people were being evacuated; I can’t remember the name at the moment, but its bound to come on TV again…..LOL.

      Anyway Ted; Nice to meet you; and you never know on here; you just might find someone you know who is still alive……..Now that would be Luck……….Take care OK……..Mick

      • John Ince

        Hi Michael, a lot you said about I can remember I was born in 1947 and had to go to school on the 662 or 18 bus. a lot of this was before they the built the A40 and them 4 tower blocks. I joined the TA Para’s in about 1965 so know about the Lee Enfield 303s and Bren Gun. The 303 had a big kick when you fire it, but the sten and bren guns were nice to fire. I look the picture and played on some of them site before they became flats, I also went to St Pauls, we had to walk from Waverly walk to Lord Hill Road to the girl school, I also did meet Terry Downs once in the back of a van we were all very pissed on our way to another pub. catch up with you soon.

      • michael bishop

        Hi John.

        Most of us got bruised shoulders the first time with a 303……LOL.

        There were two Trolley Bus Numbers; but I can’t remember them today; but the 18 and 36 also ran the Harrow Rd; I drove an 18 out of Middle Row in the 1960s etc; then I got a Cab Licence etc; I liked the Trolley Buses, and Paddington Green was a big Terminal in those days; especially on a Saturday Night. They changed St Pauls from a mixed school in my time there; after they took over Holy Trinity; where as you know they cooked all the school dinners and made it a Girls School and St Pauls a Boys School; which was sad as the girls cheered us boys up no end; and passing love notes during lessons taught me how to write…….LOL.

        Believe it or not; we often hung on the back of British Rail Scammel Lorries leaving the Albert Rd Depot and heading for Paddington Station; we let go outside Holy Trinity for our dinner; but before they made it Girls only; us boys also went to Holy Trinity, it was age separated in those days until Holtham made it a segregated school.

        Later in Life I was a doorman for Danny La Rue in his club in Hanover Square; and early one morning on a pile of rubbish was Terry Downs who had been out on the town all night; he was in a world of his own; but as it happens several years before that I was a fishmonger in Queensway; Mac Fisheries; and next door was a Chemist; where a relative of Terry worked; her name was Pauline; we liked each other a lot; but before we could get out together I was transferred to Marylebone High Street as they were short staffed etc.

        In those days jobs were two a penny; and I learned lots of trades and skills; but one of the best jobs I ever had was as a Dustman on St Marylebone Council; in those days they were not associated with Westminster; neither was Paddington; they were all separate councils; and St Marylebone was the best; nice work clothes, boots, staff canteen, showers, lockers, you name it St Marylebone Had it; but most of al;l it was Job and Finish; so we grafted hard and fast and most days we were finished by 11 am, and free for the rest of the day; and boxing in the evenings in several clubs all over Paddington and Marylebone; Dave Thomas at the Poly in Regents Street, Senior St. Middle Row. Seventh feathers over Balby Rd, and the Four Feathers off Church Street; there was always things to do in those days; plus jiving afterwards, and Friday, Saturday, and Sunday; I think that’s why we are still alive today…..LOL.

        In one of the pictures on this site you will see the site of Terry Downs Car Sales; its the one with the little office in it; and you can see the demolition work going on in the background; just near there a few friends lived; Chris and Cathy Garland were a brother and sister; and I liked their Mum and Dad a lot; they were the first family I knew that had a Hoover Constellation Vacuum Cleaner; it floated on air etc; nothing special now; but at the time it was amazing……LOL.

        Bye for Now………….Mick.

    • Peter Hewlett

      Westbourne Square photo … Are you on Facebook? If so search for Paddington, Past Caring. If not email me and i will send to you. PeterHewlett@hotmail.com

  • Peter Hewlett

    I went to school with Terry Downs cousins, I think they would have been older than him. They were called Patrick and Derek Downs. A couple of nice blokes. If you’re out there, I knew you at Senior Street school.My dad knew your uncles, One was called Cherub or something similar.p.

    • James McNicholas

      Hi Peter. I am Terry Downes’ grandson, I am researching his life fora book I am writing. Thanks fo your insights – do get in touch if you receive this. Best, James

      • Peter Hewlett

        Hi James, I would be happy to answer all and ant questions you might have. It was such a long time ago.pete.

  • Pat Barry

    The Church is
    St .Mary Magdalene , the road opposite the church was Cirencester Street

  • Joy Saker

    Reading this page has answered so many questions for me, Doing research long distance from Australia can be frustrating.

    I have been looking for years for Dartington Terrace. In old maps it is still fields. In modern maps, it is gone. In the 1899 Poverty Maps it should be there but is not.

    I knew that my mother attended Mary Magdalene church and school, so I found those and started looking.

    My mother’s family lived there from probably 1900 to 1923. Walter Henry Edwards and his wife Mary Ann, and his children – at least 10, but maybe up to 16, as I have discovered (1911 census) . 6 children mentioned who appeared to have died in the previous 10 years,which nobody ever mentioned.

    In the 1899 Poverty Map, I presume that Oliver Mews is the ‘dog-leg’ lane at the west end of Senior Street. So could someone help me with an accurate location for the few houses that comprised Dartington Terrace.

    • Richard Lovejoy

      Hello Joy

      If you have an email address that you can give me I can let you have a map extract that should resolve your problem and perhaps help you find the exact house.


    • michael

      Hello Joy; you are correct with the Oliver Mews etc, its zigzaged into Dartington Terrace, ” which was just a line of houses in what is Senior Street etc; the Dartington Terrace were a few houses on the left; just outsaide of the mews etc; I knew a boy there called jackie roache etc; Richard has a map it appears, I have one as well from ”Old Ordnance Survey Maps, for 1914, the Terrace was still there in in the early 1950s as I used to pass it daily, one residents had a Red Setter, so I often looked out for it, a Rare Sight in the late 40s early 50s etc.

      • Joy Saker

        Hi Michael, thanks for this information. What did the houses look like? Were they several storeys high? How many rooms do you think they had? Would they have had a yard or a garden? There were my grandparents and 10 kids by the time they left in 1923 or thereabouts.

      • James McNicholas

        Hi Michael. Not sure if you still check these messages, but I’m the grandson of Terry Downes, would love to talk to you for a book I’m researching. All the best, and take care, James

      • Mary Garnham

        Hi …. I was only about 7 years old, living at No 67 Clarendon Crescent, & I remember a very handsome boy living at the Harrow Road end of Clarendon Cresc. namely Terry Downs. Who became the famous Boxer. I think he was evacuated to Cornwall. I too was evacuated to Cornwall for the whole if the War. Mary Garnham. Sent from my iPhone


    • Peter Hewlett

      Hi joy my name is pete, I lived in Bourne Terrace Paddington w2 around the 1940 till 53 ish. So I know the area well. There is a book of maps, from about 1936 which shows the area. The row of houses which formed the terrace was the end of senior street to the start Oliver mews. It faced onto hasbrough street which lead into Bourne Terrace. Turn right it leads to the other end of the mews. My father was born in Philip terrace around 1905. My mum was born in the area, the other side of the harrow road.

      • Joy Saker

        Hello Pete, I have now bought the 1936 map, which will wend its way to Australia in time. Thank you for putting me onto that resource. My mum was born there in 1916, about the 12th child in the family – my gran had 16 kids in 22 years, then died while pregnant. Grandpa put most of the kids into orphanages and disbanded the family. He had PTSD (shellshock) and couldn’t cope. His children NEVER talked about what happened – we are trying to piece it together – it all came to light after my mum died – she was the last of them.

        My grandfather’s sister lived two doors down, also in Dartington Tce.

    • Stephen

      hi joy, look for a site on facebook
      hundreds of photo’s of paddington.

  • Jacqueline Cowling was Dell

    somebody wrote about a Nelly living in Delamere Cresent but I can find the post now I wanted her surname so I could ask my aunt if she new her

    • Ted Marsh

      Hello Jacqueline, it was l Ted Marsh who wrote to you re my mother who’s name was Nelly Heal and lived at No 3 Delamere crescent in the early 1930s

  • Claire B

    Hi, I am so pleased to have come across this page. I had family that lived and worked in Bishops Road, Paddington. They had a green grocers/ fruit shop at 94 bishops road around 1900-1910 possibly later, run by a family member. They were the Austin family, James and Ellen. They had 10 children. Does anyone on here have any information on this family? I have been researching for years but do not have any photographs of their shop. I would be grateful for any info anyone might have. Many thanks

    • michael bishop

      Hi Clare; you will be very lucky to find anyone still alive to help you find information on or about Bishops Road, that road became Bishops Bridge Road, and most of that very long main road was destroyed when they built the Hall Field Estate in the 50s-60s etc. I used to go to the Holy Trinity Church on the [old Bishops Road] which by them was Bishops Bridge Road etc. So you could assume that Bishops Road and all its shops were gone by then, the left hand of Bishops Bridge Rd is mostly the Hallfield Estate; the Church has long gone, but lots of the original houses on the right coming from Paddington Station are still there. London is just not the London of the past anymore; in-fact its 55% foreign born aliens today, most of the Londoners have been displaced and moved out of Paddington, even moved out of London or placed in care homes; its more like Pakistan today, I bet London has more Mosques than Churches Like Holy Trinity. I hope someone has records for you; but it will be luck more than finding someone that remembers even Bishops Road etc. Good Luck anyway……PS, it was once a great area for Indigenous Londoners, we even spoke English…..LOL.

      • Peter Hewlett

        Hi Mike when I was attending The school Holy Trinity, on the Harrow Rd. I was the thurifer doing the incense, on a wenesday morning, The chap who was the boatboy was called Jenkins. We had great fun getting it really hot, By swing it around, heaping lots of incense on the white hot charcoal, and emerging from the vestry in clouds of smoke making the elderly people who were mostly smokers really cough and splutter in the front row.

      • michael

        Hi Pete; I once went to Holy Trinity [ the girls school for being baptised etc; I was never religious, I just wanted to escape St Pauls for the afternoon; but I soon decided to become a non-believer; it was so hard to believe all those bible stories after WW2……..LOL. The vicar was called Mr Hadrian I think; but the St Pauls lot used to have forced visits every Wednesday morning; so I became a catholic to avoid that as well. It was a trick I learned in a children’s home in Hornchurch after my Mum died; lots of us war victims ended up in those homes, and on my first force visit to the homes church; which was C of E; the older boys told me; say you’re a Catholic, and you can get out the main gate and spend the morning running around Hornchurch; so I became a Catholic for about 6 months, then I got deported back to London and St Pauls, to be honest; I had a great childhood, apart from losing my Mum at 5 years old. If I had got hold of that incense burner; I would have knicked it and sold it to Scotties for Pie and Mash money. Sad about Terry Downs wasn’t it, still he had a good life, and he was tough, they all were in those days, his old car sales plot is in the Paddington pictures; he had that American Club there as well. Once I knew a cousin of his called Pauline, she worked in a Chemist in Queensway; I worked in Mc Fisheries next door, I often think ”what happened to her etc; today most of my friends are already gone……?? Best Wishes Pete………Mick.

      • peter Hewlett

        Hi Mike. I know the feeling. Thats the cost of living longer than your mates. I had a lovely girl friend, But she was a catholic, So in that time You did as you were told. So we parted, And she is always in my mind. Ann Murphy where are you now????

      • michael

        Hi Pete; just been charity shopping; did ok, two nice cook-books £1 each, one large iron chicken for £5, it must be 1930s at least, it’s for the wife’s grave; the kids and grandkids love taking things to her; especially Christmas, the cemetery looks like Hampstead Heaths fairground, with all the lights and decorations etc; the point here is, it’s not the old girlfriends or even the first wives, it’s the last one that really counts, as I look back over the years, and if I had to pick one that totally enchanted me; it was my last wife, I love her more than ever when I remember our time together. However; that doesn’t mean all my ex’s were a waste of time, they all taught me something new, which made me better for my last girl. You never know who was the best; till it’s almost over and you kick the bucket. My very first girlfriend was in that Hornchurch Children’s Home; she was the daughter of one of the staff; I never knew her till we all went to Walton-on-the-Naze for a week’s holiday, and one day I was waiting for a sand castle competition to start; and she was collecting sea shells on the beach, she was blonde, pretty as a picture, and I was enchanted for the first time, [ long story ] but I came third in the sand castle competition and won 6 pence, which I had promised to buy her an ice cream if I won any money; that evening in the Homes dining rooms on the camp site, the first two prizes were given out; and the kids were warned to calm down and stop fighting with kids from another home, then as I was expecting my prize, the head master cancelled the whole event, and I never got my 6 pence prize, I went to meet my new girlfriend outside, and she was angry about her ice-cream, then I learned my first female lesson; she dumped me on the spot, and went off with the 1st prize winner, but that was ok, once he was skint; she dumped him as well….? But I never forgot her, and I wonder if she is as pretty today as she was then, to be honest, I doubt it……!!! Take care Pete, and don’t let them get your pension money……!!!

      • Ian Mackay

        Claire & Michael Log into Facebook, Born/lived in Paddington, London, you will find a wealth of information and photos, also Paddington. Past Caring. another excellent web site. Good luck…

      • maureen fallows nee winn

        hi micheal im still alive used to go to holy trinity when mr holtham was head master do you remember miss clements she came to school all the way from clacton i dont suppose you remember mrs cryer she die two years this march she lived in spain kept intouch with untill she died

    • Ian Mackay

      Claire, 94 Bishops Road must have been a hive of activity, as there are 11 Austins resident in 1911, age range from 43 to 5 years old, James is noted as being the head of the household, occupation fruiterer…. By 1939 all the Austins seem to have gone, the new residents are a George & Mary Vaughan who are cafe proprietors, along with several other residents with different surnames…

      • Claire

        Hi Ian. Yes they did leave 94 Bishops road by the 1920’s possibly a little later. I do believe they still lived locally. But it is from there that we lost the ‘James’….. there were several james’ and very difficult to work out which one is which. Its the fruiterer james austin with the 10 children that I can not seem to find a death for. There are a few maybe’s but the death certificate details do not quite add up. Would love to see a photo of their shop but nothing from 1900 era is of that part of the road as around this time Paddington was a changing place.
        Thank you.

      • michael

        Interesting Ian; 1939, WW2, evacuations, call-ups, the Blitz soon to follow, as a kid playing in Randolph Avenue in the late 1940s, most of the large houses were empty, and it took years for them to be occupied again, lots of us kids used to go into the empty homes and cook potatoes in the range cookers, and use weapons decorating the walls as play toys, fencing with real rapiers and sabres; my favourite was a long barrelled Arab rifle with a short butt, I remember sticking 1penny bangers in the barrel and chasing my mates till it exploded. I think WW1 was the start of the destruction of the English Culture, and the end of WW2 was the start of mongrel British Culture etc. Few of us today follow or agree with what our politicians has done to our Nation, I tell my family; Politicians since the Clement Attlee’s days, have not solved any of our problems; they have only created all of our problems. Wouldn’t it be nice just to meet all those we have known; just one more time…………???

  • michael

    Hi Ian; I was on facebook years ago; but one of my ex wives is on there, and she is a nosey old cow; it drives her mad not knowing all my business; its also far to easy for others to see and troll you etc; so I left after one day…….LOL. but lots of my family use it, but its not me, I find forums can take up all your time; so I just use my email for bill paying, and general information, video and photo editing, this is the only website I still post on at odd times……Best Wishes Ian……….Mick.

    • Ian Mackay

      Mick I think you can just click on to to FB to use it without registering or revealing any personal details, I know a few folk use an alias so would never be found anyway !

      • michael

        Hi Ian; I was registered, but as I said; I found the site confusing, and deceptive etc, open to far to many fraud’s and deceptions; but lots of my family are on there; so its horses for courses…..? Me I prefer to not post on a Worlds Forum that is open to all the Internet crooks in the World…

        Sites like this; are more limited, and tend to cater for people with links to Old Paddington, such as the Paddington Green to Kensal Rise etc. I have even had my own Web-Site; but it took up far too much time, today I look at my emails, pay the odd bill, then switch off and get out and about in our part of London, its just my way……..Best Wishes to you and your family……..Mick.

  • Claire B

    Hi there, Thank you so much for your comments and information, I know that Paddington is a very colourful place to live now and nothing like it was. I will continue with my search and will have a look at the suggestions. Thanks.

    The house my family lived in was 94 Bishops road and it is still there, a pizza Italian restaurant I think it is now. They lived above the shop for a number of years, but we do not know what happened to the owner James Austin after his bankruptcy in 1910. I would appreciate any information anyone might have that might be able to help me. We do not know his date of death and with a huge amount of James Austin’s living in and around Paddington we are finding it hard to know which one is him for sure. Also his brother Frederick Austin was a boxing promoter at Paddington Baths, he promoted Pat ‘nipper’ Daley for a short while in the 1930’s does anyone have any photos that he might be in or where I might be able to find some? I know it`s a long shot but I thought I`d ask. Thanks again, Claire.

    • michael

      Hi Clare; I have a feeling the shop must be at the Queensway end of Bishops Bridge Rd today, there are a few shops at the Paddington Station end on the right, then you have to go all the way down towards Westbourne Grove for shops on the left and the right etc, I have shopped there over the years, but as you know most shops have gone, like the cinema has closed long ago. Most of what you need to find out was before my time, you can try googling Pat Daley Fred Austin, boxing is often very well covered, I have seen some I did know; Dave Thomas for instance; unknown today; but he was a triple ABA heavyweight champion, and beat Billy Walker before Billy Turned Pro; so try tracing for Google and boxing etc; you never know. My parents were of those days, I guess you’re like most of us; we are old now, and we never asked our parents all the things we should have asked them. One of my daughters has done a Ancestry family tree; and she has traced lots from what I have told her, one piece of info, often opens up many doors, so far we have traced Irish, and Scots, in our line, no Welsh yet for some reason, but we have Iberian links as well; so it’s still an ongoing thing with my youngest daughter, she’s 50 now…….LOL.

      Just don’t give up entirely when you hit walls; just have a break when you’re tired or feeling lost, then when your back to feeling normal, or want to return; Return and See what happens.

      Take care Clare…………Mick.

    • michael

      Hi again Clare; just looked online etc; …………….Nipper Pat Daly, real name Patrick Clifford Daley (17 February 1913 – 25 September 1988), was a British boxer who fought professionally between 1923 and 1931. He made his professional debut at the age of nine, achieved widespread fame in his mid teens as British boxing’s ‘Wonderboy’, then retired from pro boxing at age 17.

      Renowned sportswriter Frank Butler heralded Daly ‘the best young prospect we ever had’.[1] He is probably the youngest boxer ever to make

      The Ring magazine’s top-ten world ratings, and it is thought that he is also the youngest-ever professional boxer.

      Born in Abercrave, Wales, he moved to Marylebone, London at the age of five, then moved again with his family to the Canadian mining town of Wayne, Alberta in 1920. Within two years the family returned to Marylebone, and shortly afterwards he started to take boxing lessons at the Marylebone Road gym of ‘Professor’ Andrew Newton, one of Britain’s leading trainers of the day, who coached and managed Daly for most of his career.

      Just a little found instantly, so you see you can get info just by nick-names [nipper] sport, even friends of people you want to trace…..Mick.

  • Anne Markham

    Thank you so very much Dave Walker for these amazing photographs and post cards! The Mary Magdalene Church has received a Stage 1 3.6 million lottery fund and is currently bidding for a Stage 2 grant. The renovations which are currently underway are funded by this grant. When opened, the church will still be used for worship and will also house a heritage, cultural and arts hub for the North Paddington district. People like myself who are involved in the “Mary Mags Project” are called “Heritage Pioneers”. Please refer to the Mary Magdalene website for further information on this if you are interested: https://st-mary-magdalene.co.uk – St Mary Magdalene’s Church Paddington/Rowington Close, London W2 5TF. Tel: 020 7289 2011

  • sarahshaw

    Interested to read the post and comments. Wondering whether anyone remembers an Irishman called Frank Browne, who lived in Waverley Road in the 1950s and later in Polesworth House, Alfred Road. He appears in my recently published: diary https://www.amazon.co.uk/Secret-Diary-1970s-Secretary-Sarah/dp/1472124693/

  • Peter Hewlett

    My name is Peter hewlett, This is a long shot! I went out with a beautiful young lady by the name of Anne Murphy who lived off of Bourne Terrace.She had a younger brother called Tommy and an older sister called I believe to be Rosie. She might have immigrated to Australia, not sure. I would love to know what happened to her. If anyone has any knowledge of her, I would love to hear from you. Thanks in advance Pete.

  • Peter Hewlett

    At the moment there is a move to put a deposit on cans and plastic bottles. We as kids used to go to Hyde Park and the round pond plus the Serpentine. Large shopping bags. Watch large groups with maybe a nurse
    or nanny, They would leave lemonade bottles behind or Tizer bottles. You could end up with quite a few, a good source of money. We called it bagsis. One other thing we would do was check out the phone boxes to see if anyone had failed to press the return button, good for four old pennies.plus sieving the sand pit for lost items, Great joy when you came up trumps.It kept us busy and gave us a purpose.

  • Peter Hewlett

    I forgot on the way home, we would distract the doorman in his green braided uniform at Whiteleys, just to get a bit warm before getting back to our unheated homes, A game of cat and mouse and refusing the offers to let yourself be buggered for half a crown. A lot of money then, plus they would offer to take into the cinema. Not for me or my brothers, The older lads put you straight! Strange times.

  • stephen david

    hi, some great pitcures, i think you would find this book very intresting
    ” images of england, paddington” by brian girling.
    it’s on amazon, loads of old photo’s around st mary mag’s long before the warwick estate was built.

  • Mary Garnham

    My Mum & Dad owned the little Grocery Shop half way down the Street, on the right hand side going towards St Mary Magdalene Church. I was evacuated from there to Cornwall, came home almost 6 years later., and then went to Amberley Road School, Miss Lemon, Headmistress at the time.

    • Claire

      Good morning Mary.
      Just reading your post with interest.
      My family owned a grocery shop too up until the 1930’s I believe. It changed hands a few times within the family. It was on Bishops road. ( Now Bishops bridge road) number 94. What road was your families shop on? If you don’t mind me asking. The Austin’s owned.it originally.


  • Mary Garnham

    Oh silly me, I didn’t mention I lived in 66,Clarendon Crescent, in the grocery shop. Aunt Mary lived opposite on the Canal side. Mrs Mills lived in the “area” (basement) next door. Mr & Mrs Henley lived on the other side of us, I remember they had a “ding-dong” (party when the pub closed) on Fri or Sat nights.

    • bethanyc365

      Hi Mary, I just stumbled across this forum whilst doing some research about my family, but I am related to Mr Ernest Henley who lived at 65 Clarendon Crescent in 1932, when an Eileen Henley was born. I wonder if you knew them and whether they were the Henleys you are referring to?

  • Mary Garnham

    This is a great place to write memories, hoping that someone out there will recognize itsy bits … I also clearly remember going to the “Coly” (Bug house!) on a Sat afternoon, we were given 6p for the Coleseum, where the Usheretts would bang their fists on the wall to try to shut the noise down, & left over money to go to the Pie & Mash shop. Sometimes we’d go up the Harrow Rd to the X roads – right, to Maida Vale, but we’d go left, either before or after the Cinema, to what we thought was a posher P & M shop! Getting back to Clarendon Crescent, I remember a boy who lived opposite St Mary Magdalene in Clarendon, I can only remember his surname – Prince, he was a Boy Scout, I really liked him, but I don’t think we ever spoke, anyone remember any of these thing?

    • Roy Hamshaw

      Could you give earliest dates of your time there please.
      My grandmother was born in what was then 77 Clarendon Street; the family name was Pugh.

    • Tony Tombling

      Great to read of your memories Mary, it’s like you’re dredging my own memories. We lived at number 7 Clarendon Crescent, opposite Arthur Strange, the greengrocers, just along from Maxie Webers shop. We came back to Paddington, just before the end of the war, and I well remember the street party, on the day all of the UK celebrated. I was about 6 years old then, but the memory will live me always, all of those tables joined together, to make one big table down the whole length of the street, and lots of cakes, jelly, and lemonade.
      Us kids had made, or made ourselves, scooters with ball bearings as wheels, and starting from near where I lived, would ride the length of the crescent, down the hill, and around St. Mary Mags, into Woodchester Street.
      I remember a few names from back then. The Fulbrooks, Austins, Barnes, and my best mate at the time Cornelius O’Callahan. He lived over a closed shop, halfway down the street, on the canal side. One night the front of the building collapsed into the street, and I never saw him again. I don’t know if he perished then, or not. The story at the time was that his Mum, had, had enough, and they moved back to Ireland.
      The memories are flooding back, and I could probably go on for ages

      • Mary Garnham

        Hello again Tony, I reckon I was living in Clarendon Crescent some 10 years earlier than yourself. I do remember those shops halfway down Clarendon Crescent that were closed, but I didn’t know anybody lived in there. I lived almost opposite that closed shop, where my mum and dad had to grocery shop there. I too, remember some names, the names Plant, Welles, Loveridge and further down the street, opposite Saint Mary Magdalene‘s church, a boy who lived there his surname was Prince. Can you imagine how that street would look today similar to the well-known Crescent in Bath – would bring many thousands of £ today. We moved away in 1947. We went to Romford, it was countryside in those days.

      • Chloe fisher

        Hi you mentioned the Austins which could be my family. My Nan is Rosie Austin she had an older sister called Sheila Austin they lived on Phillip terrace. Do those names ring any bells ?

      • Claire

        Hi. We don’t have a Rosie Austin to my knowledge. We do have a Shelia Austin. Her father is Charles Austin. Do these match yours?
        Also what year can you reference them to that address.

      • Bev

        Hi Tony. My Grandfather worked on the stall for Arthur Strange, his name was Fred Anderson, married to Rose Anderson. My family lived in Brindley St, Amberly Road & Clarendon, until 1939, when most of them moved to White City Estate. The names Mum recalls at the time, O’briens, Stranges, Anderson, Luscombe, Shailers, Sullivans. Mum was born at 44 Brindley in 1930. So nice to read all these memories and informative as I have been researching the family tree. Best to you all. 😉

  • Mary Garnham

    I was born in Cirencester Street, in 1932, but must have moved to Clarendon crescent probably about 1934, because I don’t remember the move. I’m wondering whether your Grandmother lived on the Canal side because of the odd number of the house, I suppose my side were all even numbers. I was evacuated to Cornwall from Senior Street School, when I was 7 years old, came back at 12.1/2 years old, went to Amberley Rd Scool for 18 months. Then moved to Fernhead Rd.,from there I went to work for the G.W.R. at Paddington, in the Offices on the Bridge, are they still there I wonder?



  • Frank Humphrey

    The second photograph shows the off-licence on the corner of Shirland Road and Walterton Road, Paddington.
    I grew up on Shirland Road in the fifties and sixties.
    The photo brings back good memories.

  • maureen fallows nee winn

    lovely reading all your replys to each i lived in 62 cirensester street with my nan and mum along with the prices we all had two rooms each with about ten in each famalies but we all managed went to senior street school played in the streets and bomb sites all day long as we all did.

    • Anne Markham

      I enjoyed reading your memories, Maureen Fallows.

      • Mary Garnham

        I also went to Senior St School and played on the bomb sites in the posh area of Warwick Ave. I lived in Clarendon Crescent in the grocers shop, No. 66. Was evacuated to Cornwall for the whole of the war, so didn’t ever hear a bomb….I was one of the lucky ones.

      • Peter Hewlett

        Hi Mary I lid in Bourne Terrace , just opposite Senior Street School, there was a lull in the bombing, so they ( my parents) bought us back from Bridport in Dorset, Then the flying bombs started, so we were evacuated again, back to those who had grown to love us. Miss Willis was the headmistress at SSS A tough cookie. School dinners were a life saver. I got the cane for following my fathers instructions ,that I would pay in the afternoon I was told I had stolen the meal. So fairly often I would have nothing to eat that day, hard times. My older siblings went to SSS. Clifford, William, Perle, my self Peter, Trevor, Jill, Terrace, and possibly the youngest Robin. Then after failing the exams, off to Amberly road school. The teachers were dreadful, and a regime of bullying in playground. So I transferred myself to Holy Trinity school in Harrow Road, down by the Red Lion Pub. A whole new story.

  • Mary Garnham

    Hi Maureen, I think my Mum & Dad had just 2 rooms in Cirencester Street when I was born. Mum told me that Uncle John used come round the Street with a market “barra” (Barrow) selling oranges, 2 – a penny…mum asked him for an orange for the children & he said “2 a penny”!! I don’t think she ever forgave him. I also went to Senior Street School & it was there we were all evacuated to Cornwall at the beginning of the war. I remember going to the bomb sites in Warwick Avenue scrambling around for stuff that we thought the posh people who once lived there, had lost, by then I was back from Cornwall., & lived in the grocery shop in Clarendon Crescent.

    • Tony Tombling

      Do you remember the fish trader coming down the street on a Sunday, with his horse, and cart, selling cockles, winkles, whelks, and shrimps, for Sunday tea. Cockles, and shrimps, were my favourite, with a couple of slices of bread, and a nice cup of char.

      • Mary Garnham

        Oh yes I remember the cockle & winkle man coming down Clarendon Cresc. on a Sunday, we always had a jug of crisp celery on the table as well, no table cloth, but the wooden table had been scrubbed clean! Do you remember The Cats Meat Shop at top of the street, just past the Greengrocers.

      • Mary Garnham

        Another thing I’ve just remembered, IF a lorry should come down Clarendon Cresc, 2 or 3 boys would run after the back of the lorry & grab hold of the back somehow & put their feet up on to I don’t know what, & stay on for the ride to the bottom of the hill, then jump off before the lorry went further on to Bishops Bridge.

    • Tony Tombling

      Hello Mary, it’s nice to exchange views with another youngster from those far gone days. Of course, the Cat meat shop. Remember it well, I have a photo of it somewhere in my collection, I’ll try, and dig it out, and see if I can post it on here.
      Just along from the Cat food shop, was the chip shop, we used to go there, and get a pennerth of bits of the cooked batter from the fish. Better than any of the packets of crisps you can buy today. Today they would screaming how bad that is for you.
      Hey Mary, do you ever remember the Royal Horse Artillery unit from St. Johns Wood Barracks, riding up the street some mornings, about half 7 ish ?
      I found out later, when I was in the forces, that they used to go along Clarendon Crescent, and the Harrow Road, on the way to Wormwood Scrubs, where they would practice some of their show riding, on the open ground there. They used to stun everyone with their precision riding in the Royal Tournament, every year.
      The last time we had a chance to see our brave military like that, was 1999, what a shame.
      Do you remember the milkman, and his horse drawn United Dairies cart, delivering bottles of milk to our doorsteps every morning, and his horse following him faithfully along the street, stopping, and waiting for him, if he was having a chat with someone. Little things like that, we all took for granted back then, but looking back, and remembering what a great time that it really was for us, does bring a little twinge of sadness, that it is not like it today.
      Oh, before I go, I will try and jog your memory buds, with the call that the cockle, and winkle man cried, as he made his way down the Crescent. It sounded like.
      Said very slowly.

      • tonytombling

        Hi Chloe, first of all, what a nice name. With regard to the Austin family that lived in Clarendon Crescent, all those years ago. I was just a kid then, and only knew kids of about my own age. Brian Austin, was one of the kids that lived in the street. When you are that young, knowing the Christian the names of someones Dad, or Mum, is not very important.
        Sorry that I cannot help you with your enquiry, but I hope that you have some success with your search.
        Be safe, and stay lucky.

  • Peter Hewlett

    Nice reading others memories. I consider myself very lucky to have been born, and taught how to be streetwise. It has stood me in good stead over the years. Take care all you lovely people. Pete H.

  • Peter Hewlett

    In the rear of Holy Trinity School, was a Synagogue, they use to give us food left over from their religious services if we kept the noise down while they were praying, extremely generous toward us, being older than most I was very respectful towards them and ensured others were also.. Anyone remember these times ? Peter Hewlett, now in France. Merry Xmas to you all, and a Happy New Year.

  • John Tulloch

    Many of these pictures from being a child living in Ladbroke Grove from the early 1950’s. It shocks me how delapidated the area was .
    Thanks for the memories.
    Love to hear from anyone who went to middle row school and Warninton Road school late 50s

  • Alan suffling

    I wish it was still like it was

  • Louise Perrone

    My grandad Ernie Perrone had a barbers shop on Chippenham Rd near the Chippenham pub. Would love to see photos of the shop if anyone has them, it was knocked down before I was born. Ernie carried on cutting hair until he passed away in his Eighties. The family lived on Shirland Rd before moving to Doyle Gardens.

  • Alan suffling

    Hi Anne have you got a sister called Christine Al

  • John Tracey

    What a great site. Lots of memories from the mid fifties. I lived in Chippenham Road. Went to St. Peter’s primary, Chippenham Mews, 1956,57. Roy Hall lived in Harrow Rd above a bicycle shop? Linda Stevenson lived in Warlock Rd. Patchy Edwards in Chippenham Rd. Are you there somewhere? Who was the man,worked at the Rec, had a limp?

  • Chloe fisher

    Hi the photos are amazing this may be a bit of a long shot but do you have any pictures of Phillip terrace w2 my Nan was born there and would love to show her the old pictures.

  • James shailer

    Great reading I was born in 1966, I have memories of the back of the church big mounds of earth where the terraced houses that were once there? I also did some training with Edgar and Jacki over Edward Wilson school, they were great ,sorry to hear about his passing, My grandad also worked in the pie mash shop mentioned by John Ince, he made the pies and was to be given a partnership on his return from the Second World War sadly didn’t he died during the D-Day invasion . A lot of memories and a lot of history which we have to try and keep and pass down so we don’t forget how it once was.

  • martin king

    I have been doing some research on where my mother lived. She is still with us. Her name at the time was Rose Williams and she lived in Hasborough St in the mid 1930’s to the late 1940’s. She went to Senior St school and Amberley Rd school. She had several brothers and sisters i.e. William. Charlie, Stan, George, Dennis and Ethel. Charlie got married in St Mary Magdalene church. I visited the area a couple of years ago with my mum. Great day out. She told me that it was completely different when she lived there. Her street no longer exists and I think became part of Senior St

  • MarkHBurton (@MarkHBurton)

    Fascinating to see these pictures and people’s memories. My Grandmother, Nellie May Miles, was born in 1897 in the area. Probably at 55 Cirencester St., but by 1901, the family had moved round the corner to Dartington Terrace (Senior St.), which was, according to Charles Booth, somewhat better accommodation. In 1902 her father, an omnibus conductor died in the smallpox epidemic and soon afterwards the family moved to Kilravock St. on the desirable Queens Park Estate of “artisan housing”. Her older sisters lived there until their deaths in the early 1970s, and I used to visit the eldest, Rose (Rosina) when studying in London. Nellie wouldn’t talk much about the past and I regret not asking Rose more about it. However, Nellie did mention the family living “in rooms” in Paddington prior to the move to Queens Park. Their brothers William and Henry went to Holy Trinity school.

    • maureen fallows

      i was born in cirencester street we moved to st micheals street when i was seven then i moved when i was twelve to marne street queens park estate all them turnings had trees down them it seemed like that we had moved to the country then when i was fithteen we moved to harold hill romford essex wide open spaces got a job in a trouser factory making jeans it was called lee coopers how we have all moved around but still have lovely memories of paddington the paddington recreation park i ha afriend by the name of vivien bunce who lived in kilravock street she married the boy across the road surname of spring i went to holy trinity school an mr holtham was the head master always looked forward to my dinner never got much else when we got home but that was like that for alot of us kids in them days.

      • Pete Hewlett

        Hi Maureen, I also lived in Paddington, Bourne Terrace. I was also at school, Holy Trinity in harrow road. Which teachers were there when. You were at HT. Mrs king comes to mind, us young men, lusted after her. Mr soper, a very nice bloke. Miss Clements is another teacher. Mr Ange was the head teacher.

  • James McNicholas

    Hello all. I am the grandson of the boxer Terry Downes, and am currently in the process of writing a book about his life. Like many of you, he attended Senior Street school. I’m trying to find the location of the Pembroke boxing club in North Kensington. Does that ring any bells with anybody? All the best, James

    • James McNicholas

      Apologies, I entered my email incorrectly there so please reply to this message so I receive the notification!

    • Stephen david

      hi james, theres a facebook site called
      i’am pretty sure plenty of people will know the answer.
      good luck james.

  • Stephen

    hi, the pitcure with the group of lads walking in the road, does anyone know the location ?

  • Mick Maher

    2nd picture is corner of Walterton Rd, Chippenham pub opposite(see watneys sign), born Paddington General in 1951 left in 1976, lovely photos.

  • A.g.nicholson

    Could anyone tell me where oxford terrace, london is please. Or has it been demolished also. Are there any old photos.
    My paternal g.g.grandfather lived there late 1800’s.

  • Geri Hartigan

    I was born in Paddington general 1958 I had a great childhood growing up in Dudley house North Wharf Rd wouldn’t change my childhood for anything. I now live in New York since 1978 could never go back not the same.

  • dennis vines

    hi i lived in clarendon cresent were i was born in 1957 i went to mary maderline primary school would be nice to hear from people who new the vines family

  • Denise Spearing (nee Armstrong)

    Fantastic! I didn’t know these pics existed. Brought back wonderful memories of my youth in the fifties. I am 80 years old and was born and bred in the then Brindley Road, number 48 and knew all the adjoining streets, but my main source of fun was being on the Grand Union Canal so I don’t have any pics of Harrow Rd but lots of the canal and my young brothers playing in the street and fishing at the part of the canal where The Blue Lamp was made. Those were the days. Thank you.

    • michael bishop

      Hi Denise. I am a year younger than you, and I went to St Pauls just around the corner in Alfred Rd, ”Terrace etc” And I remember Jimmy Armstrong, who also went to the same school, I remember Jimmy and the Armstrong Family; lived next door to the Kent family, John, and Peter etc, John, often called Michael Kent by mates, was my best friend at school, I even left my bike in his back yard for years, as I rode my bike to school every day, and it was safer in his back yard than outside school etc.

      We often swam in the Canal at the back of Brindley Road as well.
      I have pictures from the Blue Lamp; I will try and post a couple, I have the rear view Brindley Rd image, and the little girl who was in the film, was called Sally, and Sally is still alive living in Marylebone, I know her well, she was the same girl in the film that found the gun on a bombed-site, which in-fact was just of the Edgware Rd, in a place know today as Adpar Street on the Hall PK Estate etc.

      John Kent did contact me recently so he is still alive as well, and living over Essex Way etc.

      • Mary Garnham

        Morning, I’m a bit older than you & Denise, I lived in Clarendon Crescent on the opposite side of the street from those backing on to the Canal. My Mum woukdnt allow us to go over there & join the other kids who lived over that side, but we used to sneak over there! We all used to sit on the side of the water and put our feet in! My mum told us that there were rats and bodies floating down the canal. She said she saw that as a kid. I suppose that what stopped us from getting right in. Mum & Dad had the little grocery shop half way down Clarendon Crescent going toward St Mary Magdalene Church. My maiden name is Rumball, I went to Amberley Rd School.

      • michael bishop

        Good Morning Mary. Yes it true, and your Mum was right, once I swam right into a dead dog in that canal, but it was cheaper than going to Porchester Hall Baths, or even Wedlake, plus the barge horses tugging Barges, having to get out or crushed, even the odd coppers chasing us and warning us of the dangers, in those days it was common for those living in the likes Clarendon Crescent Houses, all along the canal; to chuck out junk and rubbish into the canal, it was common to see drowned kittens floating along in line etc, I hated that because of the cruelty, when my cat had kittens I gave them to friends who really wanted them, but it was in post war London, and we never had a NHS till 1948, and only the National Assistance Board, so Londoners, along with most British people from England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales had to like it or lump it, the only snowflakes we had in those days came from the skies, plus we never had TVs, Smart Phones, Computers, so it was entertain yourselves the best way you could, so canal swimming, hopscotch in the streets, along with 30 aside football, and giant bonfires every November the 5th.

        Come on Mary……….It was fun ”Most of the Time” LOL.

        Take care, if skinny dipping…………!!!

      • Mary Garnham

        Yes you’re right. We used to make rope swings around the lamp posts as well, many a time I’ve been pushed around, the “pusher” managed to lift the rope as well while you were on it & I’ve been known to hit my head many a time on those hard gas lamp posts once the pusher walked away and left you to it Yes all good fun. I started my first job at the GWR offices in Paddington, after learning shorthand & typing at the GWR School. Have a nice weekend.

      • michaelbishop

        Hi Again Mary.

        Yes the girls often swung around the old Gas Street Lamps, and often had long ropes right across the car-less roads, with lines of them crossing the road whilst skipping under the ropes, I even did it myself to see how it was done, not forgetting Kiss-Chase, and Tin Can Tommy, LOL.

        I think its sad today that kids have lost so much real freedom, at the moment my grandkids are mesmerised by my stories of Hop-Picking and collecting Rags, Cardboard and Paper to get enough Money for a night at the Coliseum on lock bridge, remember the Pie and Mash Shop to the left of the Colli, and the Chip Shop on the Corner, and the old man selling Honeycomb outside the Colli on Sundays….!!!

        I really do feel sorry for my Grandkids today; but lets not forget the fears of our parents to the very real dangers we all faced in those days; TB and Polio to mention just 2……!!

        Saying all that; I personally am very glad those were my childhood days, even though TB killed my Mum, today her life means she was part of a chain that leaves her 7 grandchildren, and 18 great grand children; and it those children that are her eternal immortality…..

      • tonytombling

        I lived at the top end of Clarendon Crescent, opposite Arthur Strange the greengrocer. I was there from just before the end of the war, up until 1957, when I was called up for National service, and joined the Army in my Dads old regiment.
        I well remember joining the other kids at the bottom of the Crescent, and watching the filming of a car chase, with cars hairing around St. Mary Mags.
        Different, and I reckon a better world back then. Ball bearing wheeled scooters, pram wheel go carts, all rushing down the hill at the bottom of the street. Not many cars about in those days.
        Who would have thought that some of the things back then were way ahead of their time. The 662, and 664 trolleybuses, going up, and down the Harrow Road. They held a 100 people. 88 seats, and 12 standing in the rush hour, and all electric. Smooth, fast, and quiet.
        My memory box is getting a real stirring. Walking along the towpath from Lock Bridge, to what they now call Little Venice. Going to the Colly, on a Saturday afternoon, to watch a Hopalong Cassidy cowboy film. Joining in the ray boos. The climax of a cowboy film was always a chase. You saw the hero, (hooray), then the villains, (booo), and the hero put the world to rights.
        I’d better stop now, or this could turn out like War, and Peace.
        Happy May Day everyone. Take Care, and be good.

      • Mary Garnham

        Loved your stories. I went to the Colly as well on a Sat afternoon. We were given 6d each to go & have pie & mash before going in to the Colly. I remember the Usherettes bashing their fists on the loose coverings on the walls, to try and get the kids attention to be quiet, I don’t think it ever worked. Such a shame Clarendon Crescent was all pulled down. They’d be worth a few £’s now. I went to see it a few years ago & would have loved to walk down Clarendon, but, I had to dream on….

      • michael bishop

        Afternoon Tony, Mary, Denise, and Paddington……!!

        Doing spring cleaning at the moment, so its another tea break.

        Yes the scooters Tony, hand made by stripping wood from Bombed-Buildings; bearings from the many mews garages fixing anything from Old Army Rudges, Scotts, names long gone, cars soon to smother the country; the thing that separated to ball-bearing scooters was the sheer noise they made every time you crossed the gap lines on those paving slabs, the flash ones had bottle top chippers spelling out your name, all free from the local pubs, few went to University or even Grammar schools from the working class masses, but we sure knew how to do everything we wanted, or needed to do.

        I agree also Mary with ”If they had modernised those old houses, and left the streets as they were; it would have made great film sets, for all kinds of film eras. As it happened last week, I was in George Street Marylebone, browsing in a charity shop, where I bagged some electrical gear, and I moved out of the way for another old boy to see what was on the shelf, and we got talking about ”Talking Pictures” the TV station that shows old films, and guess what, we spent ages talking about the Blue Lamp; which is like a history lesson of old Paddington, we even knew a few people, yet I had never seen him before in my life; funny how history after repeats itself, years later, just as if it was yesterday.

        So much to say; but to many, its often boring.

        I have just loaded the Hop Dog film for one of my daughters; who has just moved to Kent and as it happens, near Goudhurst, where I went hop picking with one of my grannies, and they made that film there with Mandy Miller; I saw the finished film in the local community hall, they changed the name later to adventure in the hop fields, she was fascinated to learn we lived in huts, slept on straw inside what we now call a Duvet…!! and cooked all our food on open fires, and worked from 7am to 6pm with half day on Saturdays; today farmers say they have to import farm labours because the British are to lazy to work; but how do they know, if they don’t offer the work to the lower paid; I only know for sure that, we all loved Hopping; just for the holiday in the country, and meeting old friends from the year before, plus of course, hearing and seeing the RAF Jets busting the Sound Barrier almost every day, and at night, seeing all the stars in the sky, that you can’t see today.

        Some things are priceless, and mostly they are free of charge; ok tea break over………..Good Night All……..as PC Dixon would say every Saturday Night, on 9inch TVs.

      • Mary Garnham

        Ha ha…”Here we go ‘opping, ‘opping down in Kent, see Old Mother Riley, putting up ‘er tent”!!!

        I remember all the Mums & Dads singing this … I think we went in the back of a lorry, we kids must have joined in too, so this was in a box in the back of my old brain, .. it just popped up after reading your last piece. Take care all, try to remember to take your masks when you go out.

        On Tue, 4 May 2021 at 14:11, The Library Time Machine wrote:

        > michael bishop commented: “Afternoon Tony, Mary, Denise, and > Paddington……!! Doing spring cleaning at the moment, so its another tea > break. Yes the scooters Tony, hand made by stripping wood from > Bombed-Buildings; bearings from the many mews garages fixing anything from > Old ” >

  • tonytombling

    Hello Mary,
    Just like yourself, I got a job with the Great Western. I couldn’t commit to getting long term employment, as my National service would have interrupted my career. A company that wanted to employ me said that they could defer my National service until I was 26 years old, but it would have been hanging over me until then. So I decided to sign up as soon as possible, and get it done. Got a job with GWR until my call up, which they were very helpful about. I was working on the Welsh Dragon train, that went from Paddington, to Swansea. Get on the train at the Old Oak Common sheds, in the early morning. Into Paddington, off to Swansea, stay overnight in the GWR digs, then travel back home the next day. Good job, great people to work with, and really good grub from the restaurant car.

  • Finzi Contini

    What ever happened to Bourne Terrace Manufacturing Co? They were in the leather goods and novelties business late 1950’s early 1960’s. They produced a sputnik style cigarette dispenser called the Satellite for the Brussels Expo 1958 which was a big hit.

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