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?