At play in Market Lavington in 1940s/50s

We have already considered life for children in Easterton in A lad’s life at Easterton Sands – 1950s and Memories of an Easterton schoolgirl and looked at the experience of a Lavington lad in A 1950s childhood – freedom to roam. Each of our oral history recordings adds a little more to our knowledge of life here in times past.

Our recent blog entries have featured Philip Francis’s memories. He grew up at Grove Farm so, obviously, had many acres of home turf. However, he confirmed that many other local lads played there too. This 1972 photo shows some of the Grove Farm fields, long after Philip had left home, but before the housing estate was built there.

In those less health and safety conscious days, Philip says they played on the farm vehicles too, jumping up onto the trailers. (See also A coach at Grove Farm.)

Broadwell wasn’t such a play zone then, as the area around the spring was full of trees and fenced off. This postcard obviously predates Philip’s childhood, but shows the trees and fencing.

On the village High Street, the lads liked to go into Ken Mundy’s cobbler’s shop and were fascinated by his very sharp knife, used for cutting leather.

The village brickworks had closed, but Philip recalled going fishing at the lakes which had formed in the old clay pits there. (On the clay pit shows this expanse of water in the 1930s.)

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