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Messages - Ken Catlin

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General Discussion / Downham Central School for Boys - Goudhurst Road.
« on: February 27, 2021, 08:16:50 AM »
Hello Mike and everyone. So sorry to hear that the site is being "mothballed". I have contributed in the past but must admit that I am guilty of having deserted in recent years. I have come across a photo of our year (1950/51) and with an old mate have managed to recall a large percentage of the 50 or so names. I don't think it is possible to insert it here any more and wonder if you can recommend a site where it could be shown. I am now 85 and would love to hear from anyone who is still around. Regards to you and yours, stay safe. Ken Catlin - Cornwall.

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General Discussion / New Topic
« on: September 05, 2015, 12:07:22 PM »
Hi All. Can't help noticing the inactivity on Downham Discussion compared to a few years ago. An idea - what if all who are interested were to take a page each of email addresses of members and send out a message to re-ignite interest. The same message to each would not take long. Let me know what you think. Regards to all. Ken Catlin.

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I never knew Joe Mudele, but certainly knew of him. I sang regularly at the Tavern with Charlie Goodacre with the other Charlie on drums from about 1951 onwards. Is Geoff Banks the same Geoff who was involved with the boxing club at Valeswood Road ?. I knew him well at the time - remember he was a brilliant pianist. Lodged with the boxing club Chairman opposite the club if I remember correctly. (Sorry, forget the Chairmans name, but he kept the club going) Boxers were big news on Downham at that time. Names that come to mind are Peter Mahoney, Freddie Reardon and his brother and of course Eric Mc Quaid who held a British title at one time. Good memories. Ken C.
Further to the above quote, I now remember the boxing clubs chairmans name - HARRY CONDON - What a legend, many a Downham lad had Harry to thank; otherwise they may very well have "gone astray". Talking of legends, how about a "Downham Legends Hall of Fame". I would include Harry. Another nominee would be Mr Jarvis of Brook Lane Mission. (hope this counts because technically it is (was) in Bromley). Many a Downham lad have Mr Jarvis to thank for the same reasons as Harry Condon - myself included. We used to go from Brook Lane Sunday school straight to the Splendid Cinema usually armed with a bottle of lemonade and a packet of Spangles. Let us have your nominees for the "Downham Legends Hall of Fame"  . P.S. to geoffbates. Do I remember correctly that Joe Mudele changed the spelling of his surname because originally it sounded like "Muddle" and was not very showbiz ?.

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I never knew Joe Mudele, but certainly knew of him. I sang regularly at the Tavern with Charlie Goodacre with the other Charlie on drums from about 1951 onwards. Is Geoff Banks the same Geoff who was involved with the boxing club at Valeswood Road ?. I knew him well at the time - remember he was a brilliant pianist. Lodged with the boxing club Chairman opposite the club if I remember correctly. (Sorry, forget the Chairmans name, but he kept the club going) Boxers were big news on Downham at that time. Names that come to mind are Peter Mahoney, Freddie Reardon and his brother and of course Eric Mc Quaid who held a British title at one time. Good memories. Ken C.

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General Discussion / Re: Goldsmiths community center
« on: August 03, 2015, 10:56:24 AM »
Hi All. Have not posted for some time, but as an ex-`Downhamite (Southover 1940-60 approx.) I should be ashamed of myself. I went to Downham Central from 1951-4, didn't get on with headmaster Mr Dorrington at all. Happy memories of Goldsmiths - I belonged to the G.A.D.S. and did several plays with them. The "star" and producer at the time was Ken Loveday - anyone remember him ?. Plays that come to mind include "Dial M for Murder" and "See How They Run" among others. I still have photos. A good mate from those days was Ron Gibbons. We went on to form a singing group "The Three Personalities", managed by Eddie Bubbly - the best boy in Catford. Oh happy days.

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General Discussion / Re: New Tenants
« on: January 12, 2011, 01:00:07 PM »
My Tenants for Pendragon Road have left after nearly 2 years. They haved moved nearer her Mothers in Southover. But good news is her cousin likes my house and comes from Downham so is moving in. So i am slowly getting families back to the old estate.
Quote


Hi Splinter. Reading your post, could not but wonder how Southover is looking these days. We used to live at 278 for about 20 years (1938-58ish), at the top opposite the lavatories. Just a few yards down Southover was a very deliberate tarmac line across the road; the Lewisham - Bromley border. I could never understand it at the time because our address was Downham, Bromley, Kent anyway. Does that still apply ? There were virtually no cars parked in the road. (or anywhere else for that matter). I suspect that these days it is very different, but surely the width of the road only allows parking on one side ? Very difficult to imagine, having not been back to the estate for donkeys years. Perhaps it is better to remember things as they were. Good luck all. Ken Catlin.
P.S. To all our friends in Oz, hope you havn't been affected by those terrible floods. Pass on our best wishes to everyone out there. K.C.

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General Discussion / Re: Happy New Year!
« on: January 02, 2011, 08:54:13 PM »
A belated Happy New Year to all you Downhamites. Sorry it is late, have been away for a few days. Have been trying hard to enrol new contributors for 2011. Watch this space. God Bless you all. Ken Catlin

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General Discussion / Re: Snow
« on: December 17, 2010, 12:09:02 PM »
Hi All. Afraid it is sometime since I posted anything, so would like to wish all contributors a very happy Christmas and a peaceful 2011. We have been pretty lucky with the snow situation here in Cornwall, but there is more forecast. Have fun y'all. Promise to post more in the new year. Ken Catlin

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General Discussion / Re: shops
« on: November 13, 2010, 04:02:19 PM »
I always remember my Nans Divi No 197063. If when you shopped at the CO-OP and didn`t say your divi No, it was worse thing you could do as a child.
I seem to remember that if you forgot or did not know your Divi number, the girl behind the counter would use hers !. I say "girl" because I cannot ever remember a man serving, although I'm sure someone out there will correct me. Ken C.

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General Discussion / Re: shops
« on: November 09, 2010, 08:05:59 PM »
Hi all, sometime since I have been in touch. Like the others, in my era we never actually knew the names of shop owners and workers. I lived on the estate from (born) 1936 till 1960. Of course I remember Boltons and the fish shop next door. The owner of the fish shop reminded me of silent movie actor Ben Turpin : a little fellow with black moustache and wire rimmed glasses which looked like they were made from milk bottles, and his white (?) apron almost touched the floor. We used to spend our dinner money on a bread roll bought from Clarkes which we scooped out and filled with chips. This was a long while before the phrase "chip butty" came into use, but that is in fact what it was. The Post Office, The Maypole, Boltons, Pearks, Morrell & Dixon, Whites Dairy, Snooky Snacks, The Oil shop (Hawkins), The Co-Op (my mums divvy number 87470), The Barber shop, Bakers (Clarkes), Greengrocers and the Grocers on the corner of Lancelot Road whose name I forget. Who needs Tesco, Asda, Morrisons or especially Lidl or Aldi ? Those were the days. Good luck all. Ken Catlin

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General Discussion / Re: Ancestry
« on: September 11, 2010, 05:40:20 PM »
I once had a tooth removed from Skinners the dentist at the bottom of Downham Way,



I'm very proud of my Downham extraction... Moan, Moan. Sorry about that. Ken C.

Are you pulling our "tooth?"

No ! It's the tooth, the whole tooth and nothing but the tooth, honestly.
I even remember the time of day. It was tooth hurty, so there. Ken C.

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General Discussion / Re: Ancestry
« on: September 10, 2010, 11:30:07 AM »
I once had a tooth removed from Skinners the dentist at the bottom of Downham Way,



I'm very proud of my Downham extraction... Moan, Moan. Sorry about that. Ken C.

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General Discussion / Re: Ancestry
« on: September 06, 2010, 08:39:32 PM »
I have mentioned earlier that my parents moved to Downham in the early 30's, and I was born in 1936 in Lewisham Hospital. My mum came from a large family (Luckhurst) and was the youngest dying some 30 years ago. An elder sister was the last of her family to go -Lottie who died a few years ago just two weeks short of her 100th birthday. She lived for many years in Fieldside Rd. Downham. Her married name was Dover, and I had been evacuated with her for a couple of years when she lived in Loudwater, Bucks. Both Lottie and sisters Elsie, Nell and brother George lived together for many years at 71, Marmont Road, Peckham. I shall never forget that address. My dad Frank Catlin had a very different background. He was "orphaned" to a boys home early in the century and at fifteen lied about his age, joined the army and was sent to France early in WW1, was injured and sent home. The irony was that many years later he had to acquire a birth certificate for insurance purposes and discovered that a) he was a year younger than he had always thought and b) had a second name - Charles. This meant of course that he was only 14 when he joined the army. Dad did have a sister Emily whom I met a couple of times but they were never very close. Dad worked for 44 years as a maintenance driver with London Transport after which he got a handshake and a tatty certificate (enough said !). I have tried unsuccessfully to trace dad's origins through Genes Reunited, so if anyone remembers the name and can throw any light on it, I would of course be grateful. One final point about dad; he was too old to serve in WW2 so joined the Auxillary Fire Service based in Downham/Lewisham and saw a lot of carnage including I remember the infamous School bombing. That may jog someones memory. Will keep in touch. Regards Ken C.

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General Discussion / Re: Where has everyone gone
« on: August 17, 2010, 08:03:31 PM »
Hi All, as a complete newbie I was under the impression that dozens - well at least a few- would respond to the many old memories I raised in my first couple of postings. But no, apart from two or three, I was beginning to wonder if anyone actually read them, but the "where has everyone gone" topic has made me realise that it wasn't just me. A memory.... My mum and dad, who were on the estate from nineteen hundred and frozen to death, always told me that the council had a ballot to ask residents if they would like a pub or a church at the top of Downham Way. The result of course was the Downham Tavern. Can anyone actually verify this story, or were they pulling my plonker ? On the shoe repairing story, after leaving Downham Central school I went to evening classes at Durham Hill School with my mate Peter Mc Dermott for shoe repairing lessons, which proved beneficial. I saw Peter a couple of years ago and he told me he still repairs his own shoes directly as a result of those days. By the bye does anyone remember the Mc Dermott family ?. They used to live in Capstone Road and Peter went to the Catholic school - Church of the Good Shepherd, Moorside road, and had a brother Danny. One final name - the first true love of my life also lived in Capstone Road, Doreen Lockey - I dont suppose anyone remembers that family...or do they ? Will keep in touch, have lots more memories if there is anyone out there to listen or read. Regards to all you ex Downhamites. Ken Catlin in sunny Cornwall.

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General Discussion / Re: whats are ex downham pats doing
« on: July 30, 2010, 02:22:27 PM »
Splinter, I wish I could say I remember your dad , but it just aint coming back, but you remembering the car number - well I am impressed. A few more random memories :- Does anyone remember the bookies runner who used to stand, and often run in the Capstone road area ?. A cafe I used to frequent was at Grove Park opposite the Baring pub. A penny pin ball machine was the attraction which paid out if you scored over a certain amount. The owner used to do his nut if anybody actually won, accusing us of all sorts of scullduggery. Was'nt it nice (by todays standards) to see all the shops close on Sundays. Boltons used to open on Sunday morning only, and the Tavern closed at 2.0pm, otherwise peace and quiet until Monday. ..and was'nt Thursday half closing day ? Oh to return to the sanity we had then. A final thought, can anyone remember the last film they saw at the Splendid ?. Certainly one of the last I saw was Peter Ustinov in Quo Vadis (1951,) just looked the date up in a film book. Keep 'em coming. type soon. Ken C.

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