Tuesday, 10 December 2013

The Guildford Floods of 1968

As I am going through and uploading the material to the Walnut Tree Close (Guildford) website, I thought I would share the following story and picture.

In September 1968 the River Wey in Guildford burst its banks. My Mum says they heard a noise one Sunday evening and she went to the door to look out. She told her Dad there was water in the road, and the response was, as one might expect, "Don't be ridiculous!" My Grandfather then went to the back door and sure enough the water was just coming in the door.

The family then worked steadily trying to get what they could upstairs, but essentially it was really too late for some items. On the Monday morning, Mum and her Dad went into Guildford to get some wellington boots, by that point it was inpassible in some parts of town, but they did get the wellingtons and some bread and other essentials. By Lunchtime on Monday the water was well and truly inside the properties and the lower section of Guildford closed off, and the water continued to rise rapidly.

There was at the time an Army barracks in Guildford and they helped to evacuate those worse affected. My Grandparents elected to stay in their home. By Tuesday morning the water had all gone, but a dreadful smell and clean up now existed.

My Mum at the time worked at the department store in Guildford, Plummer Rodis, which was situated also along the banks of the River and the store was also flooded. Mum recalls the Managing Director, a Mr Brown, coming to talk to the staff, thanking them for all their hard work during, what would have been a challenging clean up operation and costly to the business, regardless, as a way of thanking the staff he paid them all an extra week's wages. A far cry from working for a large business today.

Mum always says that my Grandmother was totally oblivious. On the Monday evening, Gran said she felt like a cup of tea. Anyway, Gran toddled off downstairs and it was a few minutes before my Grandfather realised that she had gone downstairs. They heard a small bang then a bit of an expletive and then eventually Gran came back up the stairs with a teapot and a set of cups and saucers. She had turned the gas on and made the tea, completely oblivious that she could have completely blown the house and them to pieces.

When I asked how high the water had come into the house, the response was the water had started to climb the stairs and had made it past the first three. It might have been a dreadful experience, but not totally unexpected given how close the house was to the river. The reason for the flood, was not due to excessive rain. but there was a problems with the locks which controlled the volume of water.

This photo was taken by Allan Edwards, whose mother in law lived across the road from my Grandparents. I have looked at this photograph lots of times as it shows the house,the first on the right where my Grandparents lived, but it was only recently that I realised that the top window is open and has my Grandparents looking out and the bottom window has my Mum peeping outside.

Walnut Tree Close (Guildford) Community Archive

Back in 1984, I removed an article from the local newspaper about Walnut Tree Close. My family had been connected with the road since at least 1911. My Grandmother was born in the road in 1912.

She lived in the same property until about 1937, when her mother, who was a widow passed away. For a time, as the eldest daughter she had been looking after her brothers. At some point she returned home from town where she found her brothers had vacated the house, each going their separate ways within the Guildford area.

Between 1937 and 1939 she lived with her sister and brother in law in the Bellfields area and when she married my Grandfather in November 1939 she and my Grandfather initially made their home in Bright Hill, before relocating back to Walnut Tree Close in 1940, although in a different property. My family association with the road remained until 1996.

That first newspaper clipping was effectively the beginning of the end; as I have built up quite an archive of data.  I therefore felt it was about time, to get the material on-line.

I have therefore developed the website and a blog to accompany the website and over the course of the coming months plan to get the material on-line. 

The study is already registered with the Society for One-Place Studies

Thursday, 28 November 2013

Wanborough Cricket Club - Circa 1930?

Not the clearest photo, and sadly no one is identified in this picture. This dates circa 1930

Lymposs and Sons

Handcart and milk maid from Lymposs and Son Dairy. This firm operated from two dairies in Guildford, addresses at High Street and Woodbridge Road. Lymposs and Son eventually merged with another diary to create Lymposs and Smee.

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Elstead Football Club 1911

Standing Row - Herbert ELLIS, u/k, u/k, William BIAS, George WARNER, Alfred NOVELL, Guy BOVINGTON, Sandy TILSON, u/k, Henry ELLIS, Lewis NOVELL, u/k.

Sitting Row - first 3 u/k, Hubert HARDY, Jack BOND

Epsom and London Road, Guildford circa 1909

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Order of Buffaloes - George R Stentiford - 24th November 1932

The following was shared with me for the purpose of posting to Guildford & District. A medal awarded to George R Stentiford, a member of Order of the Buffaloes in the Jubilee Lodge (number 3508) at Guildford. Dated 24th November 1932

I was a little curious about George R Stentiford, so decided to have a little look at what paper trail he had left behind.

Firstly, I located a marriage of George to Clara Punter in Kingston Upon Thames

Marriage at Kingston Upon Thames - Image courtesy of Ancestry

George's occupation showed that he was a professional footballer. A quick search on Google revealed a small amount of detail via Wikipedia. This confirmed that he started his football career in Kingston before moving to various clubs in the north of England before returning to Surrey and playing for Guildford United.

A further search on Google revealed that George is buried in Merrow, Guildford with Clara - See HERE for details, and I on a trip to Guildford I located the grave at Merrow, which you can see on Grave Encounters.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Guildford Market Stalls - August 1939

This account comes from -
The Market Traders' Review - A supplement to the World's Fair, dated Saturday, August 5th, 1939

Friday, 20 September 2013

Puttenham Street 1914

This is a recent addition to the study and given to me as a present.

This is an original print from "A Pilgrimage in Surrey", by James S. Ogilvy; Published by George Routledge & Sons, London in 1914

Friday, 13 September 2013

Frederick William Wait & Bertha Agnes Turner - Guildford 1917

So, Who was Fred?.....

This was a question that I strove to answer back in December 2011 when I showed this picture on this blog and on Anglers Rest

A search of the Marriages for a B Turner in Guildford 1916+ to a Fred revealed one such entry. The marriage of Bertha A Turner to Frederick W Wait in the September Quarter of 1917 at Guildford. (Ref 2a, 201).

Working backwards to the 1911 Census. Did that reveal more of Bertha? The index revealed one entry for a Bertha E Turner. I took a chance and looked at the data. It didn't pay off, and revealed a Bertha Elizabeth Turner residing at 144 Walnut Tree Close Guildford, a stones throw of my Grandmother at 114. Isn't research curious?

Anyway, A quick look through the First World War records didn't prove obviously helpful, neither did the Commonwealth War Graves website. So I still didn't know who Fred was. A quick search of the 1911 Census for him and I was surprised. It revealed one entry; just one.

Frederick William Wait, Single and Aged 20 years born 1891 Guildford. On overseas military duty and recorded as in the 7th Dragoon Guards and stationed at Hislop Barracks, Trimulgherry, Duccan, India.

That I had not expected. This is still not conclusive that the Fred in India is the Fred in France. Were regiments pulled from various bits of the Empire in order to fight in Europe. Quite possibly.

Into June of 2013 and Ancestry have just released the Surrey records - a fabulous day! I took opportunity to see if I could locate the marriage record that had appeared in the indexes.

And here we are. The marriage 96 years ago today!

Courtesy of Ancestry.
Marriage September 13th 1917 St Mary's Guildford

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Puttenham in Early April 1993

Described as near Puttenham. This is a photograph of a water colour that I own. Painted by local artist, Jean M Blair in 1993

Sunday, 14 July 2013

The Bride & Groom - 14th July 1928

85 years ago today, this happy couple stood for this photograph.

The photograph was taken by Lanham Photographers, Stoke Road Guildford and pencilled on the back reads -

"With love Fred & Daisy 14th July 1928"

So, who were Fred and Daisy?

Image Courtesy of Ancestry
Stoke Church 14th July 1928

Monday, 8 July 2013

Lymposs and Smee Ltd

"LYMPOSS and SMEE Limited.
(In Voluntary Liquidation.)
NOTICE is hereby given, in pursuance of sections 290 and 341 (1) (b) of the Companies Act, 1948,that a General Meeting of the above-named Company will be held at Central Buildings, Guildford, on Tuesday the 24th May, at 2.30 p.m. for the purpose of having an account laid before the Members showing the manner in which the winding-up has been conducted and the property of the Company disposed of, and also of determining by Extraordinary Resolution the manner in which the books, accounts and documents of the Company and of the Liquidator shall be disposed of. A Member entitled to attend and vote at the above Meeting may appoint a proxy or proxies to attend and vote instead of him. A proxy need not be a Member of the Company.—Dated this 19th day of April, 1955.
(255) G. M. LYALL, Liquidator."

Source - The London Gazette 22nd April 1955

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Wanborough Church circa 1940

A special church, as my Grandfather and his siblings were Christened here during the 1900 - 1917 period.

Monday, 3 June 2013

Guildford and the Great Storm 2nd August 1906

Guildford and the Great Storm was a twelve page pamphlet published on 4th August 1906 by the Surrey Times. The Storm occurred on 2nd August 1906 and caused devastation and was the cause of several fatalities.

I bought the pamphlet in 2006 and as you would expect is does show signs of aging and has foxing and a little rust on the staples!

It is a truly lovely example of Guildford Memorabilia and is yet another way in which local historians can expand their knowledge on the area. Genealogists can glimpse extra information which may assist them on further research.

I have created a small index of the names that occur in the pamphlet. Any errors are mine, and I would urge researchers to confirm any facts before adding it to their research. 

You can read a PDF of this pamphlet HERE

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

The Font at St Nicholas Church circa 1912

I had to purchase this postcard, as at least 3 generations of my family have been Christened at this very font, including me! Even more ironic is the postal date on the reverse indicates the date which is the year my Grandmother was born.

Sunday, 26 May 2013

Mill Mead Showing St Nicholas Church circa 1905

Published by Kromo reference T21402

There was something about this card that had a degree of familiarity about it that "forced" me to buy it. On reflection it reminded me of the laundry tower on the right, but that can not be correct. If the laundry tower was on the right and the houses on the left were those in Walnut Tree Close then the church would be behind the viewer and not in the picture. 

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Elstead and it's Church by Rev Charles Kerry

This booklet was written by Charles Kerry Curate of Puttenham in 1879.

It was produced as a paper, just 11 pages long and read to the Surrey Archaeological Society.

The first and large pages have some handwriting by Kerry himself.

You can read a PDF of this copy of the paper HERE

You can read more about Charles Kerry and Puttenham at the One Place Study site located HERE

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Newspaper - John Addison 5th December 1835

Source - The London Morning Post, Page 1 - Saturday 5th December 1835

Further details from - 

Watch & Clockmakers of the World by G.H. Baillie  - Published 1966

ADDISON - John - Guildford, Early 19th Century Watchmaker

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Portrait of George Abbot (1562-1633) - Archbishop of Canterbury

George Abbot was born in Guildford. The original of this is a steel engraved print produced by W.T. Mote circa 1850. George Abbot, as the Archbishop of Canterbury performed the Coronation of King Charles I.

A well commemorated historical figure in Guildford with a statue in the High Street and George Abbot school