Garden of Roses

What was the Garden of Rose’s and do you know where it was. Well it was a memorial to the men of Laindon who had laid down their lives in the 1914-1918 war; the war to end all wars.

It was situated at the junction of Basildon Drive and St Nicholas Lane. It was built of clinker bricks, with wooden posts painted white, built into the wall, these post supported chains painted black. I am told that prior to the second war that it was kept in very good order and the roses flourished.  It was the job of the local road man to keep the garden neat and tidy and during the 1920/30s this was a Mr Pratt who lived in Markhams Chase Road. It was also his job to keep the road clear, see that the ditches did not get blocked and that there were no overhanging hedges from all accounts he did an excellent job. Pity we do not have such positions today.

The metal chains were taken down during the 1939-45 war, for salvage when all sorts of metal were being collected for the war effort. The garden was also neglected and unfortunately after the war it never recovered. By the time I appeared on the scene it was untidy grass piece of land in the middle of the junction.

Can anybody remember it?

Pre 2nd World War
Garden of Rose's Location (July 2011)
Ken Porter

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  • The Garden of Roses was the regular assembly point on one Sunday morning each month for the members of the 2nd Laindon (St. Nicholas) Boy Scout Troop and Wolf Cub Pack. With flags unfurled the members would march two abreast along St. Nicholas Lane and up Church Hill to the parish church for Holy Communion service normally conducted by the late Rev. FWJ Reynolds. If not an effort of his predecessor, the Rev. Lake, these parades may actually have been instigated by Mr. Reynolds, who was certainly a keen Scouter, (in the middle of the Blitz, he accompanied the troop on a memorable week long camp at Brick House Farm, Duton Hill between Great Dunmow and Thaxted) and his verger, Jack George, was the Scout troop’s leader. Arthur Dunlop, a Rover Scout of the 2nd Laindon, much influenced by Mr. Reynolds, became a curate at St Nicholas for a time before moving on to take up a position at Maldon as Rural Dean. The Garden of Roses was, in those day, an excellent display of many coloured blooms when in season.

    By John Bathurst (09/07/2011)

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