Flashback: A premonition, poisonous waste and an initiative to tackle drugs

PUBLISHED: 12:00 06 May 2018

60-years-ago. Picture: Romford Library

60-years-ago. Picture: Romford Library

Romford Library

A look back at the biggest local stories from this day 20, 40 and 60 years ago.

40-years-ago. Picture: Romford Library40-years-ago. Picture: Romford Library


A woman said she had a premonition that she would see her husband again soon.

That Saturday in the early hours, her husband arrived at their Romford home having escaped from Maidstone Prison.

He had been serving a three-year corrective training term for receiving lead, a crime of which he insisted he was innocent.

He had been sentenced in July 1957 at Essex Quarter Sessions.

Since then, he and his wife, had battled for his freedom.

He had returned home to discuss with her unexplored channels in his fight for liberty.

But the discussion was never completed.

Within half an hour of breaking into his Highfield Road, Collier Row, home, police officers entered and took him away.


Three-thousand people called for an end to the dumping of poisonous waste in Rainham.

A petition signed by local people, was handed to Hornchurch MP Alan Lee Williams at the House of Commons.

It was going to be sent to environment minister Denis Howell and transport secretary Bill Rodgers.

Campaigners feared that the dumping site in Ferry Lane, Rainham, could become the toxic “dustbin of the world”.

All 3,000 signatures on the petition had been collected since January, when news leaked out that more than 3,000 gallons of polychlorinated biphenyal (pcb) were to be stored at the site.

Just one year earlier, a plan to dump 6,000 tons of radioactive waste in Rainham was abandoned after a public outcry.

The petition was handed over by three members of the United Action Against Toxic Wastes group - Mark Long of Hornchurch Liberals, Christopher Aylott of the South West Essex Conservation Society and Alice Farrelly of the North Rainham Action Group.


A Havering youth initiative was given pride of place at the launch of a new 
government strategy to combat drugs.

The borough’s Bands Project was spotlighted by national “drugs czar” Keith Hellawell.

Principal youth and community officer at the Broxhill Centre, Harold Hill, Steve Power said: “I felt extremely proud.

“It shows we are in the forefront, tackling this issue using positive initiatives.”

It was the only youth project to be featured at the launch.

Its drug awareness CD, Crave, produced by local bands, was played throughout 
the launch at the Trocadero in London.

Mr Power said: “Keith Hellawell invited us because he was impressed with 
our success.

“It’s an extremely credible way to work with young people.”


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Romford Recorder visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Romford Recorder staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Romford Recorder account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Romford News Stories

We all know that London is experiencing a violence epidemic, with knife crime up by 50 per cent since September 2015.

Yesterday, 15:00

When the fighting ended in November 1918, Havering’s prisoners of war came home. As Prof Ged Martin reports, many had suffered a hard time

Yesterday, 10:00

Wondering what the weather has in store for us this weekend? Watch our Met Office video forecast.

Yesterday, 08:00

In recent weeks we have brought you the stories of families who have found a lifeline in Hornchurch charity First Step.

Yesterday, 08:00

I like science fiction. I grew up wearing glasses so I didn’t have much say in the matter.

Fri, 16:54

A former Bomber Command rear gunner who lied about his age so he could join the RAF during the Second World War died in Romford last week.

Fri, 15:55

The brutal murder of an 85-year-old great-grandmother bludgeoned to death in her Romford home by a debt-ridden gardener has left a “hole in her family that will never ever be filled”.


From November, The Mercury in Romford begins to celebrate Christmas. The mall has plenty of gift ideas, fun events and activities for everyone

Vauxhall has completed its sport utility vehicle range with the third, and largest, Grandland X. We put the SUV, now available at Tony LeVoi in Romford, to the test.

“The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining,” so the saying goes. So if some warm weather is making your conservatory uninhabitable, think about replacing its roof with a flat one and adding a roof lantern instead.

Newsletter Sign Up

Romford Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Education Promo

News from your area


A Romford photographer impressed the judges of a national creative photography competition with a picture of a stunning sunset.

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now