Nostalgia: Havering in history on September 3, 1955, 1975 and 1995

The Recorder, September 30 1955

The Recorder, September 30 1955 - Credit: Archant

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

Romford and Hornchurch Recorder, October 3 1975

Romford and Hornchurch Recorder, October 3 1975 - Credit: Archant

Sixty years ago

A 21-year-old man was remanded in custody for eight days, charged with stealing a car valued at £770.

The Hornchurch man, of Aintree Grove, who worked as an electrician’s mate, was accused of taking a vehicle belonging to a company director. Negotiations were to be held between a group of more than 1,000 strikers and their employers.

Almost 1,500 employees had remained at home for a fortnight after walking out of an office machinery factory in Roneo Corner, in a dispute over the management’s insistence that it would only deal with the representatives of relevant departments when discussing internal problems, rather than consult the seven-union Shop Stewards’ Committee.

Romford Recorder, October 6 1995

Romford Recorder, October 6 1995 - Credit: Archant

One of the workers said: “Our main aim is to get back to work with the strike at a satisfactory conclusion.

“But we are prepared for the strike to last for a considerable time.”

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A sympathiser in Hornchurch had collected hundreds of signatures from shopkeepers and tenants calling on the management to step down.


Forty years ago

A community was in mourning after an entire family died in a horror crash.

Bernard Callcutt, 46, his wife Jean, 44, and their six-year-old son Ian died instantly after their car collided with another vehicle on the Southend Arterial Road, Upminster.

The family, of Swift Close, Cranham, had been driving in difficult conditions.

The accident, which saw both cars become mangled wreckage, left the driver of the other vehicle, John Connoley, and his wife Linda, with serious internal injuries.

They were said to have been in a “fairly satisfactory” condition at Basildon Hospital.

British Airways worker Mr Callcutt’s brother Edward, 45, of Canvey Island, said: “They were a wonderfully happy family.

“Bernard and Jean had been married for about 18 years before Ian came along and they were absolutely devoted to him.

“It’s a terrible, shocking tragedy. None of us in the family will get over it.”


An Oldchurch Hospital employee was receiving treatment for typhoid after catching the disease in the hospital’s pathological department.

The senior laboratory technician, of Chadwell Heath, was being looked after at Rush Green Hospital’s special infectious diseases unit and was said to be in a “comfortable” condition.

Oldchurch Hospital, in Romford, had already been hit by a salmonella outbreak, with two elderly women dying after contracting it.


Twenty years ago

Giving birth to her son Alexander was certainly not how Kimberly Stubbings imagined it would be.

The Collier Row mum was being driven to Harold Wood Hospital when she realised the baby was on its way and she would have to give birth in the car.

She said: “As I walked out of the house I realised the baby was coming.

“I got into the car and I sort of sat on the baby and pushed it back in, I thought, ‘Oh no, I’ve just sat on its head!’

“But then I felt another push and his head popped out again!”

Alexander was then born, weighing 7lb.

“I saw the cord was wrapped around his neck and tried to get it off, but I seemed to pull it the wrong way,” said Kimberly, of Collier Row Lane, who already had a six-year-old daughter.

“I thought I was going to kill him at first, but then I managed to get if off. It seems like a comedy now, but at the time I was really worried.” Kimberly’s mum Rita was so shaken she started driving the wrong way to the hospital.


A father was left devastated after his wife and daughter were killed in a shock accident abroad.

Cletus De Frietas, 51, of Chadwell Heath, was with Lynette, 35, 16-year-old Lisa and other family members at Portugal’s Algarve coast when a car crashed into the pair as they walked along the main road leading out of their resort.

Cletus’ sister-in-law Norma, 46, also died.

His brother Finbar, 49, of Highland Close, Hornchurch, Norma’s husband, had been walking ahead of the group, with his daughter Fiona, 10, and Cletus’ son Jason, 12.

He said: “Where my family should have been there was only dust and smoke.

“I rushed back with my daughter and nephew and I saw the car. There was a huge dent in the railings.

“My wife had been knocked over the railings and had ended up on the slip road, about nine yards from where my brother, who had also been knocked over, was lying.

“Lisa was lying on the pavement, with my sister-in-law lying two yards away from her.

“My wife and Lisa died later that afternoon in hospital. My sister-in-law died about two weeks later in Oldchurch Hospital, never having regained consciousness.”