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Hullbridge Village History

The memories of Julia Budd

Our arrival

As captured in my sister Mandy's memories the family arrived in the village 19XX.

Hullbridge Primary and Junior School.

Mrs Angel was my favourite Junior School teacher. She had a halo of blonde hair a la Margaret Thatcher style and used to read us a chapter from Paddington Bear every day. I'll never forget, we felt so privileged to have her as a teacher in our last year there as well as our first.
She cuddled us and we all cried together on our last day and she'd bought all of us a little keepsake gift.
She gathered us all together 'on the carpet', and said, "Just remember when you're older and 'courting', and you part with your firstlove and feel as if you are so lonely and unloved - Someone, somewhere in the world is waiting for you and is the right one, you just haven't found them yet". I loved that teacher and Mrs. Angel was such a fitting name. Wish I could've told her what an impression she'd made.
Miss Fairbrass was so scary!
She was a bit overweight and had very short, masculine haircut and dressed very old fashioned in thick checked tweed suits, not very soft and feminine.
She used to throw the wooden chalk duster at you if you spoke out of turn and was always giving detention. We'd argue over who sat in the front because she'd spit, bad breath too, and she shouted, often. Once her false teeth went flying out onto a desk as she was shouting and we got detention for laughing!
I remember people crying literally with humiliation where she'd not let them go to the loo and they'd wet themselves. Also her making us recite the times tables up to 20 times and if we hesitated or got one wrong she'd shout and throw the wooden blackboard eraser at us! Also sneezing and her false teeth flew out onto someone's desk and being punished for laughing. MrHardy was the head and used to live down The Avenue.
Mrs.Chart was the swimming teacher who everyone liked but I remember thinking it was strange as she was completely flat chested.
Mr Rose had black rotten teeth and a bulbous bald head with bulging eyes which made him seem more scary. He was a shouter too. Mrs Alderton had black curly hair like MThatcher too. She was nice from what I recall. There was also Miss Spicer and Miss Allnutt (who had frizzy ginger hair so you can imagine her nickname! Lots of laughs).

There was a lovely dinner lady called Mrs Short who was quite broad and used to have black hair in a french chignon always. She was so kind but firm.

The really naughty boys used to get sent to the head for the cane still.
Sports Days all the Mums turned up and they were really competitive !
We had to say the Lord's Prayer and sing hymns in assembly every day. I loved Harvest Festival assembly.
We had brilliant school plays. We wrote our own songs, sung to the tune of something else and everyone had a role. I remember we played in Cinderella once and I was a guest at the ball as Mickey Mouse! Teresa Bray was Minnie and we did a short dance as we arrived. I think Chez Flinders was Snow White along with Rose Red, it was an excuse to dress up really. Good job our Mums were creative! (Mickey Mouse! Lol not just any old mouse!) Most of the extras were mice trees or birds in every play lol.

Park School.

I was in the first year it opened - 1975.
We only used half the school and were banned from going to 'the dark side' of the school, (The lights were always out!) We of course, used to sneak off from the library which was central and explore the other rooms. Loved the smell of new carpets and furniture and the fancy wall canvas of a forest in the main hall/dining room, all orange in the sunset. Half the orders for school equipment hadn't been delivered yet so we had to share textbooks and equipment for months..

Friends and villagers

Beattie: She was always chatting to everyone, always had time for all and loved children. Shame she couldn't have any, she'd have been a wonderful caring Mum. Loved her x

The things we used to get up to.

We used to go round the back of the Off-licence before it opened, and move and hide cratefuls of R Whites glass lemonade bottles so that we could take them back later and get the deposit money back (again!), I think it was 6 pence per bottle. Lol Good Recyclers we were. ahead of our time.
Having written this I feel guilty as the family who managed the Unwns off-license may read this but as Gary Congram said to me if we had not done it someone else would have, and the manager most likely knew about it and thought it was a way of guaranteeing our custom in the future, well we did buy cratefuls of the sweets from him although they were (Champagne Truffles, Wine Guns and Rum Truffles )LOL !

Playing Games

The following were posted on the Hullbridge Memories and History Facebook forum 2014:-
We also used to go newting/frog spawn in small lake in middle of the fields at the end of The Drive (Riverview Gardens) where we lived.
We'd climb up the old tumbledown fence and jump the ditch into the farmer's fields.
Sometimes he'd be growing wheat which scratched all our legs, another time corn, which grew so high we could hide in the field, like being in a maze and the only way we could be spotted was by the movement of the top of the crops as we crawled around.
We used to play 'Planet of the Apes', lol.
Divide into 2 teams (humans and apes) and a length of rope appeared from nowhere. The apes would get a headstart to hide, including up trees, and the humans would try to find the apes and capture them. They would then be tied together with the rope (or probably string!) and sometimes would be shut in a parent's garden shed. The other apes had to rescue their team and we'd swap roles when everyone was caught.
The thing is, in those days the older kids would look out for the younger ones but now thr different ages don't seem to mix, including siblings.
We'd also collect conkers and play clackers which hurt our knuckles!
I remember the new farmer put barbed wire up to keep us out but we just used to step between the spikes, very carefully ! and climb over anyway.
One day some naughty boys were showing off to the girls and thought it was a good idea to roll a giant hay barrel along together. It ended up in a ditch the river end.
Once they made a campfire and set fire to part of the haystack. I ran to report it, what a scary adrenaline rush!
Like the time the farmer chased us on his combine harvester and we thought we were going to be mangled! I'd never been so scared for my younger sisters.
Riverview Gardens was a private road, the council didn't pay to get it concreted, so it was all mud, stones and ruts. We thought it was fantastic when a 20 metre strip was tarmaced outside our house where the residents had saved up and clubbed together to pay for it. I remember it being about 1976 and feeling so proud. We used to go out on our rollerskates and skateboards practicing stunts as hardly any cars came along as it was a dead end.