Handside Memories

Pre-Campus West Entertainment!

The Cherry Tree
Stanborough Lakes swimming pool

This memory was donated to the Welwyn Garden Heritage Trust by Anne W. and is taken from an interview recorded in July 2009.

“My father had seen an advertisement on Finsbury Park Station where we had been living (not on the station but Finsbury Park) and they had come here in September – I was born in the cottage hospital in December and apart from 8 years I have lived in this house ever since.  My earliest memories really are lying in a cot in the bedroom – my father put shutters up at the windows and hearing the siren go from the Fire Station…”.

“Other earliest memories – arriving at the Convent School with my mother and being taken in by a nun who seemed absolutely enormous at the time.  Another early memory was dancing on the Campus – it must have been VD day and we were doing the Lambeth Walk – I can remember walking to one school  down Parkway  and through Guessens Road – I was at the Convent School until I was 15 and then wanted to be a domestic science teacher so left and went to the Further Education College which was behind Applecroft School  at the time and the principal was Dr Vivian Lloyd who lived in the old cottage and I had a very happy time there – it was totally different from the Convent and my eyes were opened to a certain extent”.

This page was added on 18/01/2011.

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  • Sunday night disco’s at the Cherry Tree, does anyone remember? Held in the function room behind, circa 1974-77?

    By Kim Lakey (nee Layton) (19/10/2018)
  • I lived at No 33 Bridge Road. My father was a dentist (Mr Jenkins) and had the surgery attached to the house. Dr Murray, his wife and children lived next door. He had his surgery there and shared a double driveway with my parents. Whether he used to be at number 39 and moved, I don’t know. But he was our neighbour until his death.

    By Mary (26/08/2018)
  • I have just noticed the reference in the above memory by Anne W to Dr Vivien Lloyd who “lived at the old cottage”. I presume this must be the Old Cottage at 39 Bridge Road. This is well described on this website under “Places” and is the oldest residence in WGC at some 400 years old! Dr Lloyd must have been succeeded by Dr Murray who lived and had his surgery at the Old Cottage from around 1950 (?) until at least 1966 when I last visited him. He was a very “old school” doctor who tended to mumble. Anyone who dared to say “pardon?” was told very gruffly to “wash your ears out”. The cottage apparently looks much the same now as it did in the 1950s.

    By Peter Cockbain (20/04/2018)
  • Remember the jazz club too. Great nights.

    By Bee Wiles (30/08/2017)
  • This raises many old memories of the 1950s , including the swimming pool as in the photo (long before Stanborough Lakes!). The Embassy Cinema, previously the Welwyn Theatre, pedalling madly home up Russelcroft Road after being really spooked by ” The Forbidden Planet” ! Elocution lessons in Handside Hall (?). Spending many hours and days in Sherrards Wood, cubs at The Dell, going up the track from Bridge Road and over the level crossing into the woods and waiting for the little steam trains we called The Luton Flyer. Later on in the late 50s and early 60s , I also remember the great jazz bands that played the Jazz Club at the Cherry Tree, including Terry Lightfoot, Monty Sunshine, even Acker Bilk. Great memories!

    By Peter (05/03/2017)