Author Topic: Newbie on line - can these thoughts be verified?  (Read 2673 times)

phiz52

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Newbie on line - can these thoughts be verified?
« on: April 18, 2010, 09:37:30 PM »
My mum, Frances Elizabeth Phillips (maiden name Hawksworth), has been telling me about Downham.

She is 89-years-old and, while her short-term memory isn't great, he long-term recall seems pretty good.

Mum and her family (parents Thomas Hawksworth and Frances Hawksworth) moved to Downham, I believe, in the 1920s. Mums mum was known as Fran, while my mum has always been Cissie.

Mums brother and sister (Tommy and Em) went to Durham Road School. My mum says she was one of the first pupils at a new school - Churchdown Girls. Her mum said she couldn't go to that school and had to attend Durham Road, but her dad (my grandad) put his foot down and said she would go to Churchdown.

Mum says she was among the first pupils at Churchdown Girls. She also says Ghandi went to the school because it was new and there was some sort of olpening ceremony (I have checked and Ghandi was in London at approx the right time).

Mum lived at 137 Shroffold Road - and talks about Capston or Capstone Road.

Her dad worked for British Rail at a local station. I have pics of my grandmother and granddad. Also, of course, my mum.

Relatives are still living in the London area, while I live in Cardiff.

Mum remembers the Downham Tavern because her mum and dad used to enjoy a drink there. She has also told me that as a schoolgirl walking past the tavern with friends (she has a couple of names) she saw a fight and was devastated to see it was her mum fighting outside the tavern (thankfully, mum doesn't go on the internet and won't see this otherwise I wouldn't put it here, but I feel it right to say everything I know so far).

Maybe somebody can verify bits of what I say - and I can ask mum further questions.

Any thoughts.

Nothing to do with Downham, but mum later lived in St Keverne Road, Mottingham. Also, maybe earlier, Arlington Road, Islington.

Terry Phillips

Brenda

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Re: Newbie on line - can these thoughts be verified?
« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2010, 06:04:07 AM »
Hallo Terry and welcome.  I, too, went to Churchdown School although I've never heard of a connection to Ghandi.  I wonder if you mean Durham Hill School rather than Durham Road School.  I lived in Durham Hill opposite the school. Shroffold Road ran parallel to Durham Hill - well, still does!  If you look at the aerial photos, you can see both.  Capstone Road was just round the corner from Durham Hill and Shroffold Rd and I expect your mother walked up there to the shops that we all knew as 'up the top'. You might want to run that phrase past her - also 'down the bottom'.

Durham Hill School has now been demolished but there are photos showing it.  Um ... not sure if I've put those on the site or not.  Must check.  At any rate, I can add a photo of Churchdown that was sent to me by a friend and you will be able to see where your mother went.

Downham's local station was Grove Park so perhaps that's where your grandfather worked.

The Downham Tavern has also gone now and has been replaced by a newer, smaller place but there is a photo of the old place on Downham Originals or, if you just google it, you'll probably find it.

There was a Phillips family who lived in Durham Hill.  The children were Peter, Brenda and Hazel.  Any relationship to your family?

Your mother would probably also remember 'the hill' as we natives called Downham Fields and the Woodland Walk.

What year did your mother leave Downham?

Look forward to your next posting.

Bren

Pauline

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Re: Newbie on line - can these thoughts be verified?
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2010, 06:23:55 AM »
Hallo Terry and welcome.  I, too, went to Churchdown School although I've never heard of a connection to Ghandi.  Bren


Hi Terry

I thought that Churchdown was called Downham Girls until about 1956.  Then we had Mrs Gatehouse who I believe was instrumental in changing the name to Churchdown County School for Girls.
Born 1944 in Geraint Road.  Launcelot and Churchdown Schools.  Moved to Western Australia in 1988.
Two children, 6 grandchildren, 3 dogs, hundreds of snakes, spiders and lizards.

Brenda

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Re: Newbie on line - can these thoughts be verified?
« Reply #3 on: April 27, 2010, 11:24:42 PM »
That's right, Pauline, Churchdown was originally Downham Girls. I'd forgotten that.  I guess Mrs Gatehouse was trying to posh up!

Bren