Downham Online Discussion

Forums => General Discussion => Topic started by: falkor on February 11, 2008, 09:12:36 PM

Title: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: falkor on February 11, 2008, 09:12:36 PM
Click for larger image...
(http://www.rarekungfumovies.com/DownhamSouthend/DownhamWallSmall.jpg) (http://www.rarekungfumovies.com/DownhamSouthend/DownhamWallBig.jpg)
Source: A Century Of Lewisham by John Coulter
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Pauline on February 12, 2008, 01:09:53 AM
Click for larger image...
(http://www.rarekungfumovies.com/DownhamSouthend/DownhamWallSmall.jpg) (http://www.rarekungfumovies.com/DownhamSouthend/DownhamWallBig.jpg)
Source: A Century Of Lewisham by John Coulter

Wasn't this down Valeswood?  or am I confused again.
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: falkor on February 12, 2008, 02:09:31 AM
I'm not sure myself, though John Coulter is usually very accurate with his information. Next time I visit Lewisham Local Studies, I'll see if I can find any newspaper cuttings.
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Brenda on February 12, 2008, 09:35:57 AM
Like you Pauline, I thought the wall went across Valeswood Rd and I thought it was removed during the war to facilitate emergency vehicles getting through. Dickie - we need you again!

It's an interesting reminder of how people surrounding the estate viewed us residents of Downham.  I must admit, I never came across any obvious prejudice but during my later years,  heard stories from people who said their parents didn't want them associating with Downham folk.

Like your photo, Falkor!
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Dickie eagle on February 22, 2008, 06:05:07 PM
You are viewing the wall from the Alexander Crescent side, Above the wall can be seen the top end of Valeswood and the junction of Downham Way. I had the impression the wall was demolished during the war to give access for Rescue and Fire service vehicles including the mobile guns.  Looking at tha wall you can see a gap on the right hand side which used to be a small wooden door which some of the Bromley residents had a key to.    dickie...........................
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: adcross on April 10, 2008, 11:00:43 PM
Yes the wall was at the bottom of Valeswood Road I think that it was built to divide the have's from the have not's. More of the well known British snobbery that was rife at the time.I was a member of the Bromley and Downham Boys Club which was just a few metres from the "great wall". During my time at the club  , about 1949 to 1957 , the wall was demolished. I know that because as part of our football training we used to run to Bromley and back via where the wall used to be.

Are there any ex members of the club out there. The club leader at my time was Lew Ashman. I did hear that he had problems sometime later with the police regarding his activities at the club but I never knew if there was any truth to the allegations because during my time there were no problems and he was a really good leader.

I also attended Downham Secondary although I somehow managed to graduate to the Central class, the top class of each year was regarded as the Central level but having failed that stupid 11 plus exam I found things a bit difficult. What a stupid thing that 11 plus exam was it virtually decided your future at age 11 although many that failed ended up getting really good jobs later in life.

Regards Tony Cross.
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: JSmith on April 16, 2008, 01:48:39 AM
Thanks Tony.  Being an old Boy 1956 - 1960. I could never figure out why the School had two names, Central & Secondary  :-[. Do you remember Mr Sayers,Percy the Music teacher,McGuiness,Woodrow, Peters, Green, and of course the Science teacher every one liked ??? Mr Wright. Smiffy
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: adcross on April 18, 2008, 10:31:19 PM
Hello Smiffy,
Sorry I  can't recognise any of the names of the teachers that you mentioned, I do remember a Mr Donoghue, I think that's how you spell his name, he took book keeping and I believe a Mr Evans was the art teacher. Mr Dorringtron was the Headmaster while I was there. I have just pulled out my school reports from the time and other teachers mentioned were Johnson, Betts , who was Headmaster before Dorrington, Burnett who was a sadistic b...... he carried a cane around tucked up his sleeve, and Kyte. That's about all I can remember.

Where abouts did you live on downham , I lived in Shroffold at the Grove Park end.

Regards Tony Cross.
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: JSmith on April 19, 2008, 02:48:26 AM
Hi Tony   My Brother Michael Smith went to the School, He remembers Dorrington as the headmaster. Kyte was there when I was, there so He had been there a long time, He took Technical Drawing classes and I was useless at that so we did not get on, I remember when Mum (Bless Her) came to open house and He ranted on how bad I was and She told Him where to get off, so life was not so bad for me in that class after. Mr Evans rings a bell. I went around the old School in 1989 when I was over home, before it was knocked down, it was good to see the class rooms and two halls again, it was a special ed type of School then I think.  I did post some photos on this site of the school,and a shot of the School Badge we wore on our uniforms, sent to me by an old boy who lives in B.C.     Smiffy

I forgot to add, I was born and lived in Churchdown rd, facing just off to the Downham Girls School (wow), Downderry Infants & Juniors where I went was at the back of my yard, right where the outside toilets were (ugh).
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: kilmington on October 30, 2009, 05:40:50 PM
Hi everyone.. just found Site today.. lived in valeswood from 1946 to early sixties. I well remember the wall which had glass embedded in the top. My Gran was  taken ill on a visit and my father had to climb to wall to get the Doctor who lived in alexander crescent, Dr Bellingham. Needless to say he cut his hand !!!
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Brenda on November 01, 2009, 09:52:45 AM
Hallo Kilmington and welcome. Good to hear your anecdote and I do hope you've got more to share. 

Bren
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Fred Pryor on December 31, 2009, 08:49:05 AM
Hi I am Fred Pryor and was at Downham Central School from 1953 to ( I think ) 1958. I started this because I have never shaken off the influence of Fred McGuiness ( Yorkshireman, Cricket enthusiast and English Teacher) and wanted to find out if he was still around. On reading some of the postings brings memories flooding back. I well remember 'Woodrow' and his oft repeated shout of "Where's your tie boy! you'll never get a job of work".
Along with 'Percy' I remember Mr Blackburn who in our first year would read classic boys yarns and short stories by authors like 'Q', and gave me a very comfortable  feeling, listening and totally forgetting the world around.
Please post any new of Fred Mcguiness I think he moved to Sedgehill School.
My Grandmother lived in Shroffold Road and an aunt lived in Rangefield Road although I myself lived in Lewisham and used the bus journey to do my homework.
Fred Pryor
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Fred Pryor on December 31, 2009, 11:00:26 AM
To Frank ( Hutchsky)
I well remember the full-on lunch time snowball fights with Durham Hill, beginning on the pimple and the objective for us Downham Boys was to push the Durham Hill lot as far back up to the top of the main hill as possible before we had to get back to school. We were always late back. I won't create a false memory on who had the greater success just the fact we were there is enough.
Fred Pryor
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: mike on January 01, 2010, 11:05:00 AM
Fred - a very warm welcome to the forums!
All the best for 2010
Mike
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Frank (hutchsky) on January 01, 2010, 01:05:09 PM
Fred, The problem I had was I lived in Keedonwood Road and used the ally to get home and had to pass some of the boys we have had snow ball fights with, your school just around the corner from home, so it was a fast run job home.
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Dickie eagle on January 09, 2010, 10:55:45 PM
Hello Smiffy,
Sorry I  can't recognise any of the names of the teachers that you mentioned, I do remember a Mr Donoghue, I think that's how you spell his name, he took book keeping and I believe a Mr Evans was the art teacher. Mr Dorringtron was the Headmaster while I was there. I have just pulled out my school reports from the time and other teachers mentioned were Johnson, Betts , who was Headmaster before Dorrington, Burnett who was a sadistic b...... he carried a cane around tucked up his sleeve, and Kyte. That's about all I can remember
ADDED BY DICKIE     Mr Betts was formerley the Headmaster if Launcelot Juniors his house in Burnt Ash Lane was Bombed and sadly his wife was killed. He was the perfect gentleman but never the same after losing his wife    dickie..............
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Pauline on January 25, 2010, 06:09:13 AM
Fred, The problem I had was I lived in Keedonwood Road and used the ally to get home and had to pass some of the boys we have had snow ball fights with, your school just around the corner from home, so it was a fast run job home.

It was the lead up to Guy Fawkes that I dreaded.  Mum would send me to the shops every evening, and I had to run the gauntlet of the local boys, until one day a mate (male) told me to pick up the banger and hurl it back, didn't get caught again!
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Brenda on January 26, 2010, 06:39:24 AM
Likewise, Pauline.  The worst lot, as far as I was concerned, lived in Woodbank Road at the Whitefoot Terrace end. I dreaded passing them on the way to my friend in Whitefoot Lane because of those blinking bangers.  Doubt I would have been brave enough to pick one up and throw it. Wish I had!   Of course, these days all that seems very tame, doesn't it?

Another problem with boys was (sorry, gentlemen, but it really was the lads that did these things!) with snowballs.  Some of the rotters used to make snowballs around stones and then throw them. One of them got me on the ear once and it really did hurt.

Not to mention, of course, the itching powder put down ones clothes at school!

The nearest I got to sticking up for myself was with a classmate who was tormenting me.  I finally go fed up and told him if he didn't stop, I would kick him in the shin. He didn't and I did!  I can still remember the astonishment on his face.  Wonder if he remembers!

Bren 
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Dickie eagle on January 30, 2010, 09:21:25 PM
Just been reading a chap named Bellenger on the subject of the development of the old estate, part of which states that the Valeswood Wall was demolished in the early part of the war for access of Fire engines etc.. Quite ann interesting article, there used to be a family in Tristram named Bellinger (Bellenger ? ) I wonder if they are related ?   dickie......
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Brenda on January 31, 2010, 09:10:31 AM
Where did you find that article, Dickie?

Bren
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Dickie eagle on February 05, 2010, 01:14:45 AM
Sorry Bren lover, I just stumbled upon it, but its an article by a chap called Bellenger on the estate  Dickie .........
Title: Re: Local history: Downham Wall
Post by: Splinter on February 06, 2010, 07:50:46 PM
His name is Tim Bellenger and has done a history of Downham on this site. Hope that helps all.