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History of Leyton

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John Harris writes in response to Keith Tjaden. I am 60 now and was brought up in Queens Road Leytonstone.  Keith Tjaden sparked a few memories for me.  For a short time I was a paper boy for Alice (the paper lady mentioned by Keith) when her stand was close to Leytonstone tube station in the newly made gardens where Fairlop Road met Fillebrook Road, opposite Ray Powell's and near the "Hole in the Wall" flower shop. I recall collecting my paper round from Alice in a basement near to Erith's the builders merchants by Leytonstone BR station in the High Road.

If my memory serves me well, we would hear a factory hooter at 8.25 am.  When we heard this we knew it was time to leave for school. ( Does anyone know what factory might have been near enough to Queens Road for us to hear a hooter?) My school was Davies Lane, where in 1951/2 I remember being led home by teachers through a thick smog (very exciting).  We had no pocket money, but we left home each day with one penny which we usually spent on farthing chews (Black Jacks).

During the school summer holidays I have such lovely memories of heading off to the Hollow Ponds, with a plastic flask of water, and may be threepence. A penny of the threepence would be spent on a "huge" Arrowroot biscuit as we looked across the pond and dreamt of going on a boat, which of course never happened. We were so content to climb trees and carve our initials on a tree.  A wonderful, naive childhood which I will cherish forever.

John Harris remembers

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