Memories of High Wycombe

I was born at High Wycombe and until I was about eight we lived at Vine Cottage on London Road. I remember being taken by my parents to my father's office, which was on the main road near Sweetlands, the photographer, to wave a Union Jack and to watch the procession celebrating the coronation of King George V.
I attended Sunday School in a little chapel on the main road towards Loudwater; a bridge went over the stream leading to it.

We used to walk to Keep Hill, the Rye and the Duke, across the fields over a stream near a public house to Loudwater village, to a viaduct on the London Road near which was in later years the Transport Garage. This viaduct sent back a marvellous echo.

An uncle always took me to a sweetshop in White Hart Street to buy chocolate butterflies.

My grandfather lived in the Queen's Head, Frog-more and the Orange Tree public houses during part of his lifetime; he also had a greengrocer's shop. We visited various friends and relatives, among them were Mrs Busby at the Railway Arms, Bristows the Chemist in Crendon Street, Worleys the Carriers where the smell of horses, hay and furniture were outstanding, Nurse Drake who lived somewhere along the London Road opposite the Rye, and an old lady who lived in an almshouse opposite the Technical School—a cake was always taken to her.

On Sunday mornings fresh-picked mushrooms were brought to people's houses, for sale, so that mushrooms were always a Sunday breakfast treat.

One Christmas we spent with relatives who lived in Hughenden Road. My father and uncle went along with a sucking pig in the baking tin to the local baker who cooked it and we collected it later.

C. Smith, Denham

Extracted from 'A Pattern Hundreds' (1975) and reproduced with the kind permission of the Buckinghamshire Federation of Women's Institutes

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