My involvement in local politics – by David Williams

I first got involved in local politics at the 1970 general election just over 3 years after we had moved here. Ham had no Liberal Association, it was one of the derelict wards, to use the standard term, and I was asked would I go round and collect a few memberships, which was a gentle way of getting involved, collecting five shillings off this person and five shillings off somebody else, and nine months after I got involved were the local elections. As far as Ham is concerned what was good about Ham as a local Councillor particularly an active […]

Ham development held back by poor transport – by David Williams

Because it has poor transport it wasn’t developed very much in the 19th and early 20th century so it is like it is now not just like an over-built London suburb the contrast being the southern half of Ham which was transferred to Kingston in 1933 which is now the Tudor estate, completely covered by housing.  There is nowhere that was transferred to Kingston in 1933 apart from the Hawker and sports area which is still open space, nothing at all.  Possibly the Latchmere Lane recreation ground you can include in that but it was given to Kingston Corporation by […]

The Richmond/Kingston boundary went through people’s flats – by MS

You see we’re a funny mixture, we’re basically in Richmond but part of the flats when we first came here were in Kingston but it took an arrangement in the end between Richmond and Kingston that Parkleys would be Richmond.  But the boundary actually went through people’s flats!  It was a bit awkward.  I think Ham Farm Road, the plots there got sold and settled before Parkleys, now I know when we were here they were still building so I’m not sure how it worked because there was a house at the corner of the main road, that’s an old […]

House numbering problems in Lock Road – by EB

Well we did have problem on this side of the road in 1969, one house was sold, (Hermiston) and five houses were built in its place.  Lady Dartmouth worked for the London County Council at the time and they decreed that they wanted to call 55A,B,C…  “Oh no” she said “that doesn’t sound nice” she said” no they can have proper numbers and the houses in the rest of the road can move on by ten numbers”, so that is what we had to do on this side of the road from the alleyway where the doctors alley is, so […]

Council house demand – by EB

From Richmond, it’s a Richmond council house, Mead Road.  They’d built Mead Road, Cleves Road and Lovell Road by then.  They were in rooms in Long’s Cottages which had to be demolished and they were told we will give you a council house if you let us but my mother and father had just married when this order came and they were lodging with my aunt and my father’s brother.  Apparently I’m told that Aunt Maud told the council I’m not moving unless you give Rose and Bert a house as well.  Oh no they’re only lodgers, so she said […]

Fighting to save Ham Lands – by David Williams

The biggest campaign that I was fighting in the 1970s was stopping building on Ham Lands. What had happened with Ham Lands is they were former gravel pits, disregarded and looked upon as ‘the wasteland’, one of the names for it used on the Wates Estate in the 1960s.  But the planning history of it was that Wates got permission to build on the 70 acres which is the Wates Estate now, but were then refused permission to build nearer to the river on the river side of Riverside Drive and in the typical local government way after Wates had […]