My father was sent to St Paul’s School but was rather a lonely boy, taking long walks on his own. When he was in his teens he walked along the river to Petersham meadows and sat in a field, reading his Bible. He was spotted by the local farmer, from Secrett’s farm, and after some conversation was asked if he would like to come to the small church in Lock Road (then known as Ham Evangelical Free Church) and help in the Sunday School. The church had recently been set up by various local people and representatives from local churches. […]
As a family we came over to Ham, from Kew, every Sunday and often were invited to lunch with various people. I have memories of lunch at Secrett’s farm. The farmer was then Lewis Secrett and our families became friends. I remember his wife, who was a bit eccentric I think, feeding a mouse that appeared out of hole in the wainscoting while we were eating. It is difficult to remember exactly where the farmhouse was – although I believe that a bit of the wall (opposite the end of Sandy Lane) is a remnant of the original farm boundary.
Mainly I suppose, those caused by the war because I didn’t know that it was war time and I thought that that was normal life. Just across the road where the grass is wider we had a public air raid shelter and some nights we would have to go and sleep there. We had a British restaurant in South Lodge on Ham Common and we would go and have lunch there, sometimes. I thought that was normal life. I didn’t realise that was not the normal state of affairs. It was a very busy, of course, and probably a very […]