Filling in the Pits – by KM

The area we called the Pits is now termed Ham Lands. When I was growing up – some would still call it the Pits – because it was a lot, lot larger than it is today – the area –because where all the Wates housing exists now, when I was growing up it was still an open area of waste ground. It was called the Pits because there used to […]

The Pits, a dangerous playground – by DM

I was banned from playing on Ham pits because it was far too dangerous although a lot of my pals went over there, I was actually banned I was told, no its far too dangerous, never go over (laughs) The pits closed and there used to be a little railway, a small steam railway that ran across there and we used to run across the path, the public footpath that […]

Fishing, swimming and the machinery in the Pits – by CL

You used the pits as a playground then? We used to be over the gravel pits all the time over in the pits because what a playground that was with the train going round it, little tipper trucks and stopping every so often to pick up the load and all that we used to take a potato with us and then while we was over there you could drink the […]

Not allowed near the Pits – by SJ

Oh yes, and all the railings round. It was like some kind of bomb site because it was all holes and gravel and goodness knows what else and we weren’t encouraged, although a lot of kids did, to go there and my parents certainly wouldn’t have allowed me to do that.  That would have been really beyond the pale

The Pits…wonderful but deadly – by MF

But, as I say, in those days, especially the gravel pits, you must… Dukey Stevens and Chris, that was a wonderful playground over there.  Well, the fishing, for a start, there was plenty of fishing over there.  We probably all learnt to swim over there. We swam in the pits, that’s where I probably learnt to swim.  Self-taught? Oh, yeah, yeah.  Well, you’re all playing about and… we did go […]

The Pits…playground then filled in – by EB

Well when we were kids we used to play over there, I don’t know if any of the kids have told you, Chris probably called it the pits.  It did used to have water in it and then after the war they used it for rubbish when they were building roads in London and the houses that were bombed they brought all the rubble and tipped it into there, which […]

Memories of Ham 1918 onwards (complete) – by Mildred Howes

I have lived in Ham for over 50 years and have had connections with the area all my life. As a child our family used to come to Ham regularly and had friends here… My story really starts before I was born. My grandfather (who lived in Richmond) was lost at sea in 1918 near the end of the first world war and my father, who was 8, and his […]