On behalf of Bob Davies
Various branches of my family have either lived or been connected to Laindon. One of these is my father-in-law, Bob Davies, and as Bob isn’t ‘computer friendly’ I have said I’d add his thoughts because he is keen to not only recall his memories but also to hear those of others. His niece, Gloria Sewell, is a regular contributor. Bob, in his younger years, lived in ‘Lilac’ in Beatrice Road with his mum and dad, Jack and Daisy. He later married Vera Turner who lived in ‘Ferndale’ in Sylvan Road and they moved into ‘Kalverdene’ also in Sylvan Road. In approx 1964 they moved from there to live in Great Knightleys, Basildon.
Some of Bob’s memories are: The regular bike race up Crown Hill where riders had to sit on their bikes backwards to pedal. His long time mate Lenny Hudson had an older brother, Teddy, who entered it and won in approx 1943.
He also recalls the door to the tunnel behind the St Nicholas church altar steps that was believed to go to the Manor House. A trip down this tunnel was stopped when they came to a part blocked by water. The mention elsewhere of the shop E. C. Andrews jogged his memory. It was taken over by Green Stores and then by either Stanleys or Stanfords, he’s not sure which. They sold washing machines etc and he recalls his sister Violet (Gloria’s mum) getting one on ‘the never’ but the shop went broke and she didn’t have to pay for it.