Beatrice Road

The Auto

I am Toppy (real name was Mary) and Bobby’s little sister Ruth.  I lived with my nan Mary Luton and Alfie Warren at The Auto in Beatrice Road.  We were the last people to still be there when the New Town Corporation put a compulsory purchase on it.

I have vivid memories of my childhood including playing with Dawn, John, Garry and David Cleverly before they left. (Hi Cleverlys).  It was pretty quiet after that. When Mrs Langly from the corner shop sold out, it became Robinsons and Jim Robinson the owner.  Langdon Hills School.  Daphne Wilkinson, Miss Wendon. Molly Hayball. And the bell.  Miss Willkinson is still with us and now lives in Pitsea, my nan Mary Luton worked at the school and Billericay Hospital. 

Who remembers walking to Parkinsons for paraffin, no radiators then. And old Mr Parkinson would fill your can from a massive alloy jug that he dipped. Or stopping at the chip shop for a bag of crackles. Does anyone remember the Warrens from Maytrees, Jack, Jim, Alfie,  Peter, Renee and  Doll?

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  • Hi Ruth:
    Are you the Ruth who was with Kevin Kirkman for awhile?

    By John Burton (07/09/2018)
  • Hi Ruth, John dabber dabby here. Just sitting here reminiscing with Paul Southgate about the old days. We remember The Auto, Alf and Mary, you and your family, the Cleverlys; good days with plenty of fun to be had and not too much ‘elf ‘n safety to worry about. I live near Hartland in North Devon now and Paul lives just a few miles away. Do you remember Naily and the rest of the gypsy family who lived down the road. Alf used to charge-up batteries for them. I remember Parkinson’s very well, always going there for paraffin, oil, spares for cars, etc. Do you remember I came and stayed with you and family at Wickford Avenue, Pitsea back in 1974? 

    By John Hawkins (29/09/2014)
  • I remember the Cleverleys whose bungalow was down the white station wooden steps and then along a little cinder path.   I think the sweet shop was at the far end of that path.  I used to go to school with Cheryl Cleverly and a few years ago Garry Cleverly did a job in my mum’s house.  We used to live in Salisbury Avenue.  I used to walk past the Cleverly’s house to get to the recreation ground at New Avenue.

    By Judy Webb (nee Ranson) (12/08/2014)

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