My memories of when we first moved to Debden are not very good as I was about 18 months old. I can remember my Mum saying that the roads were unmade and muddy.
We moved from Hainault where my Brother and I were born, but Mum & Dad had both been born in London, Mum in West Ham and Dad in Poplar, Mum being bombed out and moving to Laindon.
When we moved in the rents were £25 and Mum was worried about how she would manage as Dad did not earn a good wage. Dad was a Bargebuilder on the Thames and would cycle to work but later he got a Motorbike and sidecar.
We lived in Chandler Road with 3 Bedrooms, mine being the box room, Dad revised the door so there was more room. Mum and Dad had the front Bedroom.
All the rooms had built in cupboards so plenty of room to put your clothes. Downstairs you had the front room,hall and the Kitchen which was fitted with storage, 2 cupboards above a hatch going into the front room.and below another cupboard and drawers.Along side that you had the broom cupboard. The other side of the kitchen by the window you had the sink with double drainer next to that was the Larder, The other side by the back door was the cupboard which the door was in the garden.
Above was the gas meter. Along side the sink was the copper boiler ,where every Monday Mum would do the washing steaming up the kitchen.
Out in the back porch was the coal cupboard and the toilet which would be freezing in the winter and the pipes would freeze .So dad put a door on the porch which he did on a number of the neighbours houses.In the winter the pipes would often freeze as there was no heating other then the fire. The windows would ice up and the metal frames would break the glass.
My brother went to Staples Road school as he was 3 years older than me. I went to both of the Hereward Schools, I can remember having to go to Fairmead School as one of the Hereward Schools was not built but I am not sure which one.
The School photo is at Hereward Junior School with Mr Goreham I am on the back row on the right, the one with the plaits.
Mum did not have a full time job. She would do cleaning for people and at one time she cleaned at the William Brother store [near the crossroads in Loughton], but she would always be there at home when we got home from School.
You could play out in the streets with your friends or go for a walk in the forest or you and your Mum would go blackberry picking .In the School holidays I can remember she and some of the other Mums would come out in the street and turn a big rope so we could all skip with no worries of cars coming around as nobody had cars in those days.
Saturday night we would have a man come round selling the Saturday night paper and he would always have a pocket full of sweets and he would give you one if you went to the door with your dad.Sunday afternoon the Cockle and Whelk man would come round selling ready for Sunday tea.
BOAT IN CHANDLER ROAD