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Nostalgia: Havering in history on December 20, 1953, 1973 and 1993

Romford and Hornchurch Recorder, December 21, 1973 Romford and Hornchurch Recorder, December 21, 1973

Friday, December 20, 2013
6:45 PM

This week in history - 60, 40 and 20 years ago.

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The Recorder, December 18, 1953The Recorder, December 18, 1953

Sixty years ago – 1953

A 20-year-old was given a £14 fine for threatening a manager and smashing a telephone in a café.

The man was given the punishment for his behaviour at the Bar Maximillian, of Elm Park Broadway.

He was banned from the premises after causing actual bodily harm to the previous manager, but turned up at 11pm one night with five friends.

Romford Recorder, December 17, 1993Romford Recorder, December 17, 1993

After being refused a cup of tea, he left before returning a few minutes later.

Prosecutor K. A. Round said this was when he became “fighting mad”.

The man tried to stop the manager going behind the counter to phone the police and then smashed the telephone down onto the floor.

He raised his arms twice as if to hit the manager, but customers intervened.


A 23-year-old was sent to prison for three months for stealing money from his mother and typewriters from businesses.

The Romford man pleaded guilty to taking £11 from his mother and stealing the machines from the Romford Typewriter Service and the Haywood Typewriter Service.

He asked for a further offence of taking £7 from his parent, to be taken into consideration.

The man, who got £5 for the typewriters at a second-hand shop, told Romford Court he would pay back all of the money.


A fox killed 12 award-winning chickens over three nights at a Hornchurch farm.

It knocked the top off one chicken run, tore open the wire mesh on the front of a second and dug under the door of a third.

Four of the birds had won prizes at the Buff Orpington Club Show and the Royal Agricultural Show in Blackpool.

Forty years ago – 1973

Four-hundred Rainham workers due to lose their jobs were hoping to save their employer’s factory.

Twenty of the employees at the New Road site offered to pay £1,000 each to stop Victor Engineering going out of business.

Others were trying to persuade people to invest money so the assets of the business could be taken over and the company could launch elsewhere.

The building was being sold to Ford.


A school fire which caused an estimated £50,000 worth of damage was declared suspected arson by police.

Classrooms were gutted, walls collapsed and the roof caved in at Scargill School, of Mungo Park Road, Rainham.

The fire tore through seven classrooms, a library, storerooms, toilets and cloakrooms.

Less than an hour before the blaze, children had been leaving a disco at the nearby Brittons School.

Nearly 240 children turned up at Scargill on Monday only to break for their Christmas holiday one week early.

Education chiefs were due to meet the week after to decide where the children would study after the festive season.They were considering a nearby church hall.


Regulars at an Upminster bingo club raised £100 for the widow of their club manager.

Members of the Top Rank bingo hall, St Mary’s Lane, made the kind gesture to Pauline Bell, 26, after her husband John, 30, died in a road accident. The couple had been married for 18 months.

Before coming to Upminster, Mr Bell had been deputy manager at a Chadwell Heath hall.

He featured in the Recorder a few times, including when he arrived at the wrong church for his wedding.

Twenty years ago – 1993

Collier Row residents dressed up as Snow White and the seven dwarfs when they handed over £7,000 worth of gifts to London Hospital.

Punters from the Bell and Gate pub, of Collier Row Lane, delivered televisions, video recorders, video games and toys to sick children after Kenny Molster mentioned his stepson Aaron, 17, was in the hospital with leukaemia.

The televisions were chosen as the children’s ward did not previously have any.

Mr Molster said: “It was fantastic. He [Aaron] is suffering from a particularly nasty form of leukaemia and may be in hospital over Christmas.”


A 12-year-old girl from Romford died after she became trapped under a bus in Dagenham.

Antoinette Gray was on her way home from her Dagenham school when she crossed Whalebone Lane South with friends.

As she lay trapped under the single-decker bus, passers-by tried to help her.

Firefighters arrived in a few minutes and freed Antoinette, but she died of multiple injuries in Oldchurch Hospital after battling in intensive care for 16 hours.

The driver, whose passengers were mainly children, was said to be badly shocked.


A bird breeder had four rare owls worth £2,000 stolen from his Collier Row home.

The man, of Lower Bedfords Road, looked in the aviary at the bottom of his garden one afternoon only to find it had been broken into.

He had last checked on the owls at 9.30pm the previous evening.

The stolen birds, which had been advertised as for sale in a specialist magazine, were two Australian brown owls and two Mexican striped owls, which are similar to tawny owls.

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