Sunday, 24 January 2010

News From Peter Westmacott


Hello Jean
Lovely to hear from you after all these years. Very impressed with your Summervale blog - keep up the good work. It deserves a wide audience. I was delighted to see the photos. The one of Clive Williams and myself I had never seen before. Was I really that much taller than Clive? I always thought we were the same height!
Re where people lived: I think the Kearneys lived at number 4; the Drivers definitely lived at no.8 and we lived at no.10. The Hodgsons lived at no.25 next door to my grandparents Reg & Ethel Durham.
Looking down your list of names brought back many memories for me. As soon as I saw the names I recalled them all though I had forgotten some of them.
Some early memories:
1. I did a Sunday paper round and covered all 50 houses in Summervale. I delivered the papers early then had to go back around 12 noon to collect the money. (Some houses had 3 papers; you wouldn't get that now!). As I moved around the estate all I could hear was "Family Favourites" on the radio. I could pick up a song at one house then hear the finish further up the road!
2. "Doctors and Nurses" in the tent in the Richards' garden. This was great fun in the summer months. There would be Carol, Wenda, Valerie Jolly, Joan Wakeham, me and my brother David. I'm sure it was all pretty innocent stuff!

Yea Right!!


3. Girlfriends. I got interested in the girls quite early on (unlike Mike Smith who came to this interest much later on!). I think Mary Williams was my first, then there was Valerie Jolly and Joan Wakeham. I quite fancied her sister June but she was a bit older than me! After this I became very interested in Margaret Sibley but she came from outside Summervale. Traitor!

Mary Williams was very popular. Pretty girl with that red hair & freckles.

I fell in love with Clive at the age of about 4! Don’t know why I fancied him but it was unrequited love – Boo Hoo.

4. Television. At first there were only two TV sets on the estate: the Williams and the Smiths. I used to get invited to Clive's house to watch the Cup Final and to Mike Smith's to watch floodlit football matches (about 1955). All very exciting for a 13-year old  boy, mad keen on sport.

Umm, I think we were the first to have T.V. Dad got it from Scrivens and I still remember that “H” aerial.

We had it installed for the Coronation in 1953 and our little bungalow was full to  the gunnels.

5. Cars. I think the first cars on the estate were Ron Dixon's and the Hodgsons. It was  very safe riding our bikes on the road around the green or haring down the hill on our home-made trolleys. I can picture Ron driving around the green and holding Gloria on the running  board as he steered one-handed!

There are so many more memories. They can wait for another time. I'll try and find some old photos too.
I would love to hear from any old Summervaleans, especially Clive Williams, Mike Smith, Cliff Hargest, Alan Dixon,John Rogers,Mary Williams, Val Jolly, etc.  In fact, all of you!
Best Wishes
Peter Westmacott

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