Nostalgia: Havering in history on June 26, 1955, 1975 and 1995
- Credit: Archant
This week in history – 60, 40 and 20 years ago.
Sixty years ago
A 59-year-old man was fined 10 shillings for being drunk in South Street, Romford.
He was seen lying on the pavement and was picked up by passers-by and taken to the police station.
The man told Romford Court he had lost his teeth and could not eat, so thought he would drink instead.
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Another man was also fined in a separate incident on South Street.
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A mother had all but lost hope in her daughter returning home, as she had been missing for 18 days.
C. McDade’s daughter Catherine, 17, had vanished after leaving their Harold Hill home.
Her mother said: “I have practically given up all hope of Catherine coming home. If she has not returned by now, she will never return.”
A letter had arrived for the family the last weekend signed Kathie, but they had decided it was a forgery.
The previous week, a former neighbour of the family reported they had seen Catherine at Central Park, Dagenham.
A search party went out and saw a girl who was “almost the image of her”.
A man was found dead in a train when it arrived at Romford station from Liverpool Street.
Richard Sharp, 58, of Laurel Crescent, Rush Green, was a printer employed by a national newspaper and had been on his way home from work at the time.
A post-mortem examination revealed his death was due to natural causes.
Forty years ago
An education spokesman claimed truancy rates among teenagers had jumped up to between 50 and 80 per cent at some Havering schools that term.
The claim was made by Bill Bonnen, president of the Havering branch of the National Association of Schoolmasters.
He said: “At the present time, some schools are lucky if they get 20 per cent of the fifth form in on some days.
“I am referring to cases where the absenteeism is definitely truancy – not where they have permission to stay at home.”
Ald Norman Kemble, Havering Council’s education committee chairman, disagreed.
He said: “I certainly do not accept that it is all truancy.”
Road accidents involving children had risen by 21 per cent in a year.
Figures from Havering Council showed slight injury collisions had increased dramatically and serious injury accidents had increased from five to eight.
The figures, which showed no children were killed, were for the first four months of the year and were compared with figures for the same time period the year before.
A 13-year-old girl from a cycling-mad family was making a name for herself.
Peta Marsh, of Orchard Avenue, Rainham, had broken the Elite Cycling Club’s schoolgirl record for 10 miles and was making an impression with her time trials.
Her grandfather Dave had been the first person from England to win the World Amateur Road Race Championship in 1922.
Peta’s father Peter, 48, a cyclist himself, said: “I can’t remember anyone in the family not being a cyclist.
“But we didn’t push Peta into it. She is just interested in all sports.
“We hope she will retain her interest because it needs dedication to be a really good racing cyclist.
“But if she does continue, it looks as if she will do well.”
Twenty years ago
A disabled teenager was set to take on the highest bungee jump in Europe.
Wayne Mills, 23, from Rainham, who broke his back four years previously when he fell from a roof, was all set to complete the challenge of leaping from a crane in Wandsworth, south London.
Wayne, raising money for the Spinal Injuries Research Trust, had already taken part in a bungee jump in his wheelchair, making him only the second person in the country to do so.
He said: “I’ve already done a 150ft jump, which was great. The jump happens so quickly that you haven’t got time to be scared.
“I managed to raise £2,000 from the first jump. This time, with the help of three friends who are also jumping, I’d like to do the same again.”
Parents voiced their concerns about the threat of asbestos to their children after plans were made to refurbish a classroom at a school.
Robert Hadley, headteacher of Gobions School, in Chase Cross, wrote to parents and told them they could keep their children away from the school if they wanted.
Parent Andy Dennis said: “Those buildings are full of blue asbestos and my boy’s class is right next to the two they will be working on.
“I am so angry. Why do they have to do the work this week, when the summer holidays are only five weeks away?
“Although I have kept my boy off with a homework pack, how long will it stay in the air?”
Cllr Michael White, who represented Chase Cross ward, said: “The reason the work is being carried out now is to save the council money and also so that a nursery unit can be up and running for the start of the autumn term.
“A safety officer has told me that it is very safe and they are testing before and after.
“But as far as I am concerned, if one piece of dust could get through, no cost and no amount of money is worth putting a child’s health at risk.”