Nightingale Parade - Which Year?

Page submitted by Gerald Jones (Gerry)

1 Nightingale ParadeLangdon Hills & Laindon Co-Operative Society
Schofield & Martin’s Stores
T. Mole (Thomas Mole)
A. Elsey & Son
Kershaw Cressy Ltd
Westminster Wine Co.
General Stores 1903
General Stores c. 1904
Off Licence
Off Licence
Off Licence
C.P.O. 01/01/1971

So; the corner building was a Co-op for 1 year then became Martins Stores in 1904 (as in my copy above of a postcard), subsequently it was Thomas Mole’s off licence before becoming Elsey’s off licence. This information from the Basildon History website does not indicate when it first became an off licence. However, if it was in the late 1920’s, the copy postcard could be contemporary with the High Road Laindon postcard that led to so much discussion and may have been part of a set of postcards at that time. It has same form of lettering and shows as Laindon not Langdon Hills.

Gerry Jones.

Nightingale Parade
Gerald Jones (Gerry)

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  • I remember Elsey’s off licence very well.  I would often be sent on an errand by my dad when we lived in the the upper part of Alexander road that crossed Berry Lane. He would give me a ten bob note (now a 50 pence piece) to purchase a quart of Mann’s Brown ale and twenty Woodbines, and bring my dad the change! There was a pile of brown paper squares on the counter (no plastic bags in those days) and bottles would be wrapped in this. Mr Elsey was always smartly dressed in a suit. He was a rather portly man and polite. (No those days for buying drink/tobacco products) There was a deposit paid on beer bottles, around two old pennies for a pint bottle and four pennies for a quart bottle.

    Reading about the story of helping yourself to a bottle of cider from over the brick wall, this was well known. In time only “empties” were stored by the wall, in wooden crates, but you could reach the empties and return them to the shop to get the deposit on them! 

    By Robert Springate (12/09/2016)
  • I probably shouldn’t relay this tale, but what the heck, the statute of limitations must surely have expired by now. While a pupil at LHR I learned that a person could acquire free beer from the off licence in this photo. At the cost of 2/- information was bought to enable one to make said acquisition. This information came from a fellow pupil who lived close to Elseys off licence. At the rear of the shop was a yard enclosed by a high brick wall, a corrugated iron roof covered the yard, but there was a gap between the roof and the top of the wall, about 6 inches if I recall. You had to go there on your bike, this was very important as the bike became a tool. Leaning the bike against the wall at the side of the shop that can be seen in the photo and then standing on the saddle, one could then reach between the wall and roof. A little bit of maneuvering of the hand and suddenly a quart bottle of cider would find its way into the hand. The cider was Coates, I always remember this as I thought that Coats didn’t have an ‘e’ in it! Don’t remember drinking the cider, in fact don’t remember doing anything with it but I only did this once before selling the information on. Probably just one more reason why I was the black sheep of the family?

    By Donald Joy (04/09/2016)
  • Although there are no kerbs at the time of this photo, it does appear that the road surface was firm and not rutted. Does this mean that this was a metalled road and if so was drainage in place or would that have come at the same time as the kerbs? If that was the case it would have been a back to front way of doing things. 

    By Donald Joy (03/09/2016)
  • Mr T. Mole had been the licensee of the Red Cow in Dry Street.  Research, using the local paper archives, shows that in 1930 he applied to transfer his license to 1 Nightingale Parade as he wished to trade in a more central position.  His request wasn’t granted until the following year – 1931. 

    Therefore we know the photograph shown above was taken before 1931 and as there are no kerbs present, it must have been before 1929, the year the kerbs were added to the High Road.  So, as suggested, the two photos may well have been taken at the same time and possibly were part of a set.

    Hopefully we will eventually discover the exact year.  

    By Nina Humphrey(née Burton) (02/09/2016)

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