Coincidence of the timely message carved on Pumpkin

Famous K.C. And Pumpkin Coincidence Both Broadcast Same Message The unusual hobby of Mr. Sheridan Wood, of The Mount, Farningham, of growing giant pumpkins, upon which he inscribes timely messages, has had an interesting sequel this year. On Sunday evening some few months ago, Mr Norman Birkett, K.C., concluded a broadcast appeal on behalf of the Lord Mayor of London’s fund for Londoners whose homes had been destroyed by bombs with the following words:- “I shall pass through this world but once.  Any good thing, therefore, that I can do,…

Travel Advert: Grey-Green Coach

Grey-Green was a bus and coach operator based in Stamford Hill and operated in London and the East of England. The company was trace its origins back over a century to the foundation of George Ewer’s horse carriage business in 1885.  The business prospered, and summer-only services operated to many South Coast resorts. Before the end of the 1920s, East Anglia was well covered too. The first service to operate throughout the year was a London to Ipswich service that commenced in June 1928. The 1930s started with the introduction…

Shelters Under Water – Orpington Urban Council

Protection of civilians in the event of an enemy attack was an important issue to the Government during World War Two.   In 1938 the Anderson Shelter, named after Sir John Anderson, Home Secretary during the Battle of Britain was designed.  It was designed for use in the garden, and when covered with earth the shelter would give some protection from shell fragments and bomber splinters, although dampness was an ever present problem. These shelters was designed to accommodate up to six people, and were supplied by the government for free…

Police Sergeant David Lionel Grigg honoured

On the evening of the 9th November 1940 at 19:00hrs the sirens began to ring out over Bromley due to enemy aircraft having been spotted flying towards the area.  Half an hour later disaster stuck. En route to Central London a Heinkel He 111 was hit by anti-aircraft fire.  The damage was so severe that the bomber began to break up in the air, with one wing landing in the rear garden of 45 Cranmore Road in West Chislehurst. With his plane out of control, the pilot bailed out, shortly…

End of a Giant: Death of the North Tower

On the 30th November 1936 a catastrophic fire took hold at the World famous Crystal Palace. Within hours, the Palace was destroyed. All that was left standing after were the two water towers. Their final fate came at the beginning of World War 2 amidst fears that they would serve as landmarks for German bombers on their way to bomb Central London.  The South Tower was taken down first; dismantled due to its close proximity to houses and shops, but the North Tower was demolished with explosions on the 16th…

Night’s Heavy Blitz – April 1941

This report describes the aftermath of a heavy night of bombing on the town of Bromley in Kent on 16th April 1941. Due to government censorship of newspapers at the time, no exact location is given, other than a South-East residential location, but we now know this location to be Bromley, St Peter’s and St Pauls’ as the parish church which was destroyed, and the furniture depository being Dunn’s of Bromley which was located on Market Square. Heavy Bombs and Incendiaries in a residential area. Churches raised to the ground…

Conscientious Objector Summoned, 1941

The National Service (Armed Forces) Act 1939 was enacted by UK Parliament on 3rd September 1939, the day the United Kingdom declared war on Germany at the start of the Second World War. It replaced the Military Training Act 1939 (which has been passed in May of that year) and enforced full conscription on all males between 18 and 41 who were UK residents. With a few exceptions, including Conscientious Objectors. When the Second World War broke out, there were nearly 60,000 registered Conscientious Objectors in the UK. Testing by…

Sergeant-Pilot Harold Ian Maxwell

We have with regret to record the death on active service of Sergeant-Pilot Harold Ian Maxwell, R.A.F., youngest son of Mr. and Mrs. W. H. Maxwell, formerly of Firgarth, Edward Road, Bromley, and now of Newlands, Plaistow Lane. Friends and neighbours unite in offering heartfelt sympathy to them. Mr. Harold Maxwell was born at The Avenue, Grove Park and educated at St Lawrence College, Ramsgate.  In business he was first of Sweet and Maxwell, law publishers, Chancery Lane, London. During the Munich crisis of 1938 he joined the R.A.F. as…

Schools prepared for Air Raids

    Air Raid Shelters Keston School Prepared When the scholars at Keston Church Schools return from their Easter vacation on April 1, the new air raid shelter built on the Common opposite the school will be ready for use.  The shelter is a workmanlike job with accomodation for upwards of 100 senior scholars.  There are emergency exits at the end of each passage, and entrance is made by a flight of steps which decend to thejunction of two passageways.  In addition to seats and necessary air-lock and gas preventative…

New Hitler Proclamation!

This article is not what you think.  It appeared in the Bromley & Kentish Times newspaper in March 1941   NEW HITLER PROCLAMATION News comes from Germany that Hitler is about to proclaim himself King of England. If this claim is to be accepted seriously, some apology is due to unfortunates who have been from time to time proclaimed themselves Henry the Eighth, Nero – or a Poached Egg – and have been placed under restraint when their tendencies have been towards violence. The Hitler clique will “Heil” the proclamation…