Basildon Famous People

Joan Sims
Jillean Hipsey (nee Porter)
Eamonn Martin

New Book Release

Basildon Famous People….by Ken Porter


Basildon Borough as we now know is the largest district in Essex with a population exceeding 170,000 and second to Southend in density. I suppose it is therefore not surprising that there is a great number of individuals from the Borough who have become nationally or internationally famous. I have picked out 50 names but many of these go back to when the area was a small farming environment with no large villages or towns. You may not have heard of some of them but I hope you agree with me that in their own field and time, they were well known.

At the end of the book I have listed another 45 names of people who possibly one day will be able to join my 50 names and there are more and more being added to the list all the time especially in the sporting and entertainment world. 

Out of the 50 names 26 have strong connection to Laindon and the surrounding district:-


Joan Sims – Actress

Joe Goodman – Comedian

Alison Moyet – Singer

Depeche Mode – Singing Group

Eamonn Martin – Athlete

Jillean Hipsey – Netball

Perry McCarthy – Formula 1

Steve Jones – Footballer

George Sawyer – Speed Boats

Josh Dubovie – Singer

Graham Kendrick – Modern Worship Music

John Georgiadis – Conductor

Keith Chapman – Bob the Builder

Lord Leatherhead of Dunton – Politician

Baroness Smith of Basildon – Politician

Greg Smith – Producer

Joan Dowling – Actress

Edgar Longstaffe – Artist (Buried at St Nicholas)

Ernest Longstaffe – Producer & Composer

Cecil Hewett – Archeologist

Rev. John Pell – Rector of St Nicholas

Hugo Peters – First Laindon School teacher.


Book is available on Amazon or from Basildon Borough Heritage, Green Centre, Wat Tyler Park or from me if you bump into me.

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  • Hi David.
    Where did the wedding take place? I spent nearly an hour on the phone with Graham when I was writing the book.

    By Kenneth F Porter (31/08/2020)
  • Graham Bonney was best man at my uncle Dennis Hambers’ wedding to my Auntie Pat Card.

    By David Newman (31/08/2020)
  • Hi Nina,  I have spoken today with Ted Crudgington who lives in Bowers Gifford and he has confirmed that they are not the parents of Cheryl Baker..must be another family.

    By Ken Porter (17/07/2017)
  • Hi Ken.  Thanks for that.  I’m sure you are correct and the Ted Crudgington you spoke to from Bowers Gifford is from a different family (or branch of the family).  I have re-checked the online records and Cheryl (Rita Maria Crudgington) is definitely the daughter of Edward J Crudgington and Florence M Crudgington.  She has several brothers.   

    Cheryl mentions on line that most of her family live in Essex, so maybe Ted Crudington of Bowers Gifford, is a cousin or similar.  Did he mention whether he is related to her in any way?

    By Nina Humphrey(née Burton) (17/07/2017)
  • Hi Donald…I keep having people mentioning Cheryl Baker but I cannot find any reference connecting her to Basildon.


    By Ken Porter (26/09/2016)
  • Ken, re Cheryl Baker. A little vague I know but I feel sure that her parents home was in the vicinity of the Owl and Pussycat public house. Hope this might help. 

    By Donald Joy (26/09/2016)
  • I remember seeing Cheryl Baker and her mum shopping in SavaCentre in the late 80s.  Cheryl’s real name is Rita Maria Crudgington.  She was born in Bethnal Green and grew up there.  On line, she mentions that in later years her parents lived in Basildon.  She would pick up her mum and dad from there and drive them down to Southend for an ice cream.  She doesn’t mention ever having lived in Basildon herself.    

    Her parents were Edward J Crudgington and Florence M Crudgington.  The telephone directories of the mid 80s show an E J Crudgington living at 21 Westlake Avenue, Pitsea.

    By Nina Humphrey(née Burton) (26/09/2016)
  • Cheryl Baker ex Bucks Fizz was a local girl too. Often used to see her with her Mum shopping in Basildon.

    By Donald Joy (24/09/2016)
  • Hi Donald

    Graham Bonney is included, I spent an hour on the telephone with him, and have the recording of the call. He sent me a number of photographs. I have since bought the 45 ‘Super Girl’

    Cheers - Ken

    By Kenneth Porter (23/09/2016)
  • I had never heard of Graham Bonney so I looked him, and the song Super Girl, up on YouTube.  He can be seen singing the song at different times over a number of years, and also singing, in what I think is German. at a number of venues in Germany.  Worth looking up if your browsing on your computer.

    By Georgina Nottage (nee Ellingford) (23/09/2016)
  • Hope you haven’t forgotten Graham Bonney who had a hit record in 1966 titled “Super Girl”. He lived in Long Riding, Basildon and went on to become popular in Germany. 

    By Donald Joy (21/09/2016)

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