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Thread: Rochford / Southend

  1. #41

    Default Re: Rochford / Southend

    I use to live in Southend but now live, and ring, in Hertfordshire. I must say, for both a bellringer and an aircraft enthusiast, that tower is Utopia and I wish my local tower was as well-placed as that! I certainly think that the word tintinnabulous sums it up nicely!

  2. #42
    Senior Member Southend Spitfire's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rochford / Southend

    Two German destinations have been announced http://www.echo-news.co.uk/news/9909...erman_flights/

  3. #43
    Senior Member Southend Spitfire's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rochford / Southend

    Quote Originally Posted by REF View Post
    Hi SS, nice to see Easyjet have finally arrived at Southend. I didn't know about the church spire, is there anything at the church to record this? A memorial plaque or notice maybe?
    I sent an e-mail to the church asking for some information and got a reply.

    When, in 1956/57 major repairs were being carried out to the building, the cedar shingles to cover the tower and spire were donated by the Canadian Government in thanksgiving for Canadian servicemen.
    There are no memorials in the church or in the graveyard to Canadians. There are a number of War Grave Commission Graves but they are all English.

    During the summer of 2008 the tower and spire were reclad using riven oak shingles as the cedar shingles had become porous and had also been damaged by woodpeckers.

  4. #44

    Default Re: Rochford / Southend

    Thanks SS, I was sure there was something in Rochford Church though, perhaps I mis heard it and its another local on the the airfield.

  5. #45
    Senior Member Southend Spitfire's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rochford / Southend

    I dont know about the Rochford Church yet but will try and find out.

  6. #46
    Senior Member HF Dave's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rochford / Southend

    Vulcan and Type 22 pillbox on the perimeter of the airfield (beside the railway):
    vulcan&pillbox.jpg

    Zooming in on the pillbox the internal anti-ricochet wall is visible:
    pillbox.jpg

  7. #47
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    Default Re: Rochford / Southend

    I grew up in Eastwood during the 60's and the airfield and it's surrounding defences were a natural magnet to all the kids. I especially remember a wall mural inside a hut which was on the golf club side of the airfield that had a beautifully painted mural of the RAF oval and eagle with the wording 'Remember the few' underneath it.

    Over to the East was the shooting range which is now near the Cherry Orchard Park. As kids we used to dig all kinds of spent ordnance from the large back-stop, everything from .303, cannon rounds and even a grenade on one occasion. We were told that the range was used during the war for testing planes guns. I'm not sure if that was true as the range was only 50yds and gun convergence must have been at least 150yds?
    Near this range to the South there was an area of tunnels stretching out across the fields to a huge concrete block with fixing bolts. As kids we used to go down the tunnels but you couldn't go far before they were blocked. Apparently this area was an AA site with underground storage, though I have no idea if this were true.

    We loved all the pill-boxes as they gave us natural forts when playing soldiers. I remember the mushroom ones at the end of Aviation Way as they were an odd design, perfect for us kids though as they were shallow inside so we could easily see out.

    I remember there was a rectangular pill-box virtually buried by the fishing lake which a passing old boy told us was the main HQ for the airfield. A lot of the pill-boxes were demolished when the Astronaut estate was built along Whitehouse Road.

    Another memory is of a chap just off Aragon Close in Prittlewell who had a Spitfire minus it's wings in his back garden. I heard he had worked on them during the war and was doing this one up.

    Also we had a field day when the aircraft museum was being setup and a lot of it's planes were parked along the railway line where the Vulcan is now. A group of us sneaked across the railway line (yes incredibly stupid but we were about 8 years old) and into the planes which were all unlocked. We were in one plane, I think it was a bomber and of course we were recreating raids over germany etc. when sitting in the pilots seat I suddenly saw a police car rushing across from the apron complete with flashing lights.
    We bailed out of there quicker than if it was on fire, hopped back across the railway line and hid in the pill-box. They must have known where we were but they just checked all the planes then left.

    Excuse my ramblings but that time was fun for my generation, a time when the Summer break seemed to last forever and when parents would come out to the fields to scream and shout and try and get their kids in before it got too dark.

  8. #48
    Senior Member Southend Spitfire's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rochford / Southend

    Thank you for sharing you memories that was interesting to read.

  9. #49
    Junior Member unclebirdcage's Avatar
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    Default Re: Rochford / Southend, golden days of youth

    Quote Originally Posted by Georgio View Post
    I grew up in Eastwood during the 60's and the airfield and it's surrounding defences were a natural magnet to all the kids. I especially remember a wall mural inside a hut which was on the golf club side of the airfield that had a beautifully painted mural of the RAF oval and eagle with the wording 'Remember the few' underneath it.

    Over to the East was the shooting range which is now near the Cherry Orchard Park. As kids we used to dig all kinds of spent ordnance from the large back-stop, everything from .303, cannon rounds and even a grenade on one occasion. We were told that the range was used during the war for testing planes guns. I'm not sure if that was true as the range was only 50yds and gun convergence must have been at least 150yds?
    Near this range to the South there was an area of tunnels stretching out across the fields to a huge concrete block with fixing bolts. As kids we used to go down the tunnels but you couldn't go far before they were blocked. Apparently this area was an AA site with underground storage, though I have no idea if this were true.

    We loved all the pill-boxes as they gave us natural forts when playing soldiers. I remember the mushroom ones at the end of Aviation Way as they were an odd design, perfect for us kids though as they were shallow inside so we could easily see out.

    I remember there was a rectangular pill-box virtually buried by the fishing lake which a passing old boy told us was the main HQ for the airfield. A lot of the pill-boxes were demolished when the Astronaut estate was built along Whitehouse Road.

    Another memory is of a chap just off Aragon Close in Prittlewell who had a Spitfire minus it's wings in his back garden. I heard he had worked on them during the war and was doing this one up.

    Also we had a field day when the aircraft museum was being setup and a lot of it's planes were parked along the railway line where the Vulcan is now. A group of us sneaked across the railway line (yes incredibly stupid but we were about 8 years old) and into the planes which were all unlocked. We were in one plane, I think it was a bomber and of course we were recreating raids over germany etc. when sitting in the pilots seat I suddenly saw a police car rushing across from the apron complete with flashing lights.
    We bailed out of there quicker than if it was on fire, hopped back across the railway line and hid in the pill-box. They must have known where we were but they just checked all the planes then left.

    Excuse my ramblings but that time was fun for my generation, a time when the Summer break seemed to last forever and when parents would come out to the fields to scream and shout and try and get their kids in before it got too dark.
    How good it was to read the memories, i grew up in southend and would cycle to the airport at weekends. there were all sorts of broken planes to the far left- as seen from the terminal, we would go there and 'collect' any interesting looking bits we could find.
    on one occasion we saw what looked like an oversized circular manhole coverwe tried to lever it up but never suceeded. i have since been told that it was the roof of a hydraulic machine gun emplacementb made by a firm called 'pickhavent'. i've never seen one of these, perhaps someone may have information about it. i wonder if the one we saw is still there- an obvious candidate for preservation.

  10. #50
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    Default Re: Rochford / Southend

    That manhole would be a Picket Hamilton Fort, we have a thread about them here http://www.airfieldinformationexchan...Hamilton-forts & the Pillbox study group have a good page about them here http://www.pillbox-study-group.org.u...hamilton-fort/

    Heres a preserved one in its raised position Attachment 15472

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